An alternate title for this blog post was going to be "How I Fell Off the 28 Day Challenge Wagon." It's disappointing news I know. And it KILLS me to tell you that I didn't make the 28 day challenge. I did every day up to the Mardi Gras Half. I even got in more than a mile walk the next day.
So what stopped me from doing it the next day? I was sore. And not just a little sore. I've been sore lots of times, but never like this before. I've been trying to figure out why since the race. In addition to being sore, I was exhausted!
This was the first race I've ever run that I feel like I treated it as a race. Every other time, I feel like I've treated it as a training run with a medal at the end. Not that there's anything wrong with that, I just wasn't prepared for the toll it would take on my body. Usually during a race, I do exactly what I do during training runs.
Not this time. I ran the half a minute faster a mile than I run my training runs. I also ran a lot more than my intervals. Frequently I skipped the walk interval or at least cut it short. I think the additional running and speed (I have to laugh a little when I say speed, because I'm by no means fast!) made me really sore and tired. Now I understand why you need rest days after a race. The general rule is one day per mile. I took about 10 rest days.
Other contributing factors to my overly soreness:
- rough terrain - the last 2ish miles had lots of gravel on the road, essentially making it a run and a core workout
- lack of hydration - I was plenty hydrated before and during the race, my mistake was not hydrating properly after the race
- walking lots for 3 days before the race - I have no idea how much we walked but I would guess it was at least an equal distance to the race
After being so sore, I'm slightly worried about the back to back races I have planned (and already registered for) on April 30th and May 1st. Hopefully, I've learned from my last race. I won't be trying to set a PR at either race, so I'll have to tell myself to take it easy. I'm also planning to try the feared ice bath and hope it helps.
My next race is Tom King this Saturday. I'm hoping I can stick to my plan and not be sore the next day. I really need it to build my confidence for my back to back races.
I'm so proud of everyone who started the 28 day challenge and everyone who stuck with it and completed it, especially my little sister!