When to Skip a Workout..
I was asked a very interesting question during the week. What is the thing that stresses you out most in life? After thinking about it for a while, my answer was... missing a workout. It's funny that something so insignificant came to me as the thing that stresses me out the most in life, but it is true. Missing a workout is stressful. If I have a plan, I want to stick to it, and anything that gets in my way is a huge inconvenience and is setting me back from achieving my goals. With that being said, this week tested my stress levels. It is rare that I ever get sick, but this week I just couldn't fight it off. I was left questioning whether I should push on through my training plan or take a day or two off to make sure I recovered properly. Eventually I decided I was going to push on and a little illness wasn't going to slow me down. After putting my running clothes on, I headed out the door and ran down my street. Then I turned around and ran right back home. It took me starting my workout to realize that there was no point in continuing. The risks of costing myself more time to recover far outweighed any benefit I was going to get from that session. Those are the decisions you have to make as an athlete, and sometimes you have to pull the pin and recover before pushing your body again.
Thankfully by Sunday I had taken a couple of days off and was feeling pretty good about my health and ready to tackle my long ride. I had a day trip to Indiana planned to see my Alma Mater, SDSU play tennis in Valporaiso so I decided I'd sleep in and make sure I had fully recovered before riding when I got home that afternoon. Given the way my 2014 has started you can probably guess that our car broke down, my phone was run over, and we were stranded for the night in Middlebury Indiana. I was so annoyed that I was going to miss another workout. Bryna is used to me obsessing over my workouts, after noticing my frustrations, she took it with a smile and said "life happens." It's true, life does happen and maybe this was a sign that I needed another day off to fully recover from my illness.
This past week was a big mental test for me. After a slow start to 2014 and only 2 weeks until my first race of the season getting sick was the last thing I wanted. After some reflection I have come to realize that sometimes you do have to miss workouts and the smartest athletes realize this and don't try to push their bodies too hard when they shouldn't. Life does happen, sometimes you have to embrace it, recover, and live to fight another day.