Runner's high / runner's low

What, never heard of a runner's low?

I've had one for about the last month. And I had even a few acute attacks on this morning run.

Nobody ever talks about the runner's low but I'm pretty sure it's a thing.

I got a cold in December and have been battling ever since. Sure, I did a few park runs, and while that's nice and all, it's hardly the kind of preparation I should be doing for The North Face 100.

I finished antibiotics earlier this week and while this time hasn't been completely sans training, I'm a long way off where I should be. I've lost a lot of fitness so even short runs are difficult, physically and mentally.

This kind of setback, similar to injury, I think results in a runner's low. Motivation wanes as physical assets decrease.

Every run I've done recently has felt hard, and I've told myself more than once, just to get myself out the door, "it won't get any easier by NOT doing it".

So this morning I was determined to get 20ks into my legs. According to my Garmin it was 26 degrees by the time I left home and it only got hotter from there. Mostly, my run felt hard. At times, so hard that I stopped. Just stopped. For no reason. Just because it felt too hard to continue. (Because, I'm sure, I was suffering from a runner's low.)

Each time I reminded myself, "it won't get easier by NOT doing it, remember", so got going again and completed just over 21ks.

Despite the ongoing low, today was punctuated by a few highs. I had a bit of a chat with a fellow runner, who was in rehab from an injury and therefore walking to the gym. We exchanged our thoughts on hydration packs and distance running, in an interaction kept me running for a couple of ks after.

Closer to the end I passed and was passed by a woman who chugged her way through 5ks. She runs regularly to keep some cardio fitness to deal with altitude on her frequent trips to Nepal. (She appeared to be running naked* - if she was doing an out and back run, she ran further than that today, and maybe does every time.)

While my body has been on a hiatus, so has my writing. There are a few stories I still have to tell you.

  • You need to know about why my fear of birds is not going away any time soon. 
  • You need to know why I've hired a trainer and how I'm slowly but surely eliminating my fear of gyms
  • You need to see the pictures and video from my run on the Dularcha - Ewan Maddock circuit.
  • You need to know the agony of shopping for mandatory equipment for a 100k run in potentially cold conditions

(And by "you need to know", of course I mean "I want to tell you".)

So hopefully I'll be around a little bit more, with some retrospectives and some current updates.

*Naked running does not mean running without clothes. It means running without devices such as GPS, heart rate monitors, pedometers, etc.

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