…I love post-marathon recovery time.
I’m not one of those runners that gets itchy when separated from running for more than 48 hours. In fact, to sustain my love for running, I deliberately shoo it out of my life every once in a while.
Post-marathon life has felt like one gigantic exhale. I’ve tucked away my foam roller and massage stick, weaned myself off the ibuprofen, and let a few dust particles settle on my training log. I don’t get anxious if I stay up past 9:30. It felt strange at first, but soooo good. Liberating.
I don’t know if it was some sort of reaction to the events in Boston or what, but after the marathon, I had all this weird energy. Energy that needed spending. You know when you’re tired, but still feel a stubborn restlessness? That was it. I don’t remember feeling that way after other marathons, but Lord knows every marathon is different.
I’ve been spending that energy. I went out with a friend on a weeknight, and stayed up past my bedtime. I attended a Pampered Chef party. I visited Lowe’s, went on a plant shopping spree, then came home and planted what I fondly call my “Patio Ranchito.” Fingers crossed that the plants flourish, because my mouth is watering already at the thought of home-grown peppers and herbs.
But all planting and no play makes Shannon a dull girl, no? After getting my hands satisfactorily dirty, I washed up, pulled on my boots and went out to a country bar with three friends. After a couple of Shiner Bocks and a few high-spirited numbers played by the band, the following happened:
1) I rode a mechanical bull.
2) I attempted two-stepping.
The bull ride was FABULOUS. I’d had reservations about it, but with my marathon [i.e. concerns about injury] behind me, and seeing that the bull was encased by cushiony mats akin to a moonbounce, I put my fears aside. I slung myself on that thing, and I’m proud to say I stayed on for longer than 8 seconds!
The two-stepping was…well…I stunk. Luckily, my dancing partner could two-step quite competently, and was very patient. I’m just glad I didn’t step on his feet – and it turns out, a lackluster dance experience isn’t so different from a lackluster running experience. I want to try it again and do better, darn it!
After the bull-riding and two-stepping [and, ahem, staying out past 1 a.m.; my training self was squeaking in panic, but I shushed her up], that restless energy still buzzed under my skin. Fortunate, since I had agreed to crew for my friend Charity at a hot air balloon event the next morning. I’ll just say that strong coffee is a wonderful, wonderful thing. And I got to enjoy another benefit of post-marathon recovery time: after everyone finished their flights, I could actually hang out and enjoy the tailgating, rather than my usual routine of relaxing briefly, then dashing off to do my run.
I’ll get back to running soon. Very soon.
Until then? I think I hear a beginner’s Zumba class calling my name. Heaven help us.