'I want my runners to run at a relatively even pace. Given this, they should view those who bolt out early as foolish people whom they will catch at the end.' -- Tom Grogon, running coach.
It's nice to have energy. It's better to be smart.
Some days, you get up, full of spit, feeling as if you can run with the wind. So, you go out and challenge the wind to a match race, and that's the day you feel a twinge in your leg. Or you enter a race. Primed for a new personal best, you roar out of the gates like Secretariat. You push the pace, but before long the pace begins to push you. As runner after runner passes you, you wonder how all that enthusiasm and energy could dry up so fast.
But it does. Energy waxes and wanes, like the tides. So does enthusiasm. Look at young runners. If energy alone won races, they'd be unstoppable. But just as the hottest fires often burn out the fastest, impulsively energetic runners are the ones who flame out come race time.
The best runners are a potent mix of energy and experience. They run smart, evening out the ups and downs, knowing that enthusiasm will carry them only so far. They may push the early pace, but only for tactical advantage. They know they're going to have to back off at some point or they won't be able to compete at the end.
You (like all runners) have a limited storehouse of energy. Learn to use what you have. Take advantage of early enthusiasm, to be sure. But know, too, that it won't last forever, and adapt your strategy accordingly.
The rush of energy doesn't only refer to a specific training day, but could also be the training week or month..... When we take on something new, we sometimes tackle it with such zeal that it is easy to burn out...... and lose our steam. I find that in the course of the week, I slowly run out of steam.
And today, like most Fridays... the week has caught up with me. I am spent.
My new running/training program gives me Fridays off. And I feel ready to tackle the weekend and the rest of the week.... my tri program gives me Mondays off, which leaves me a little conflicted.....
Rest is important to me. If I am tired, I sleep. And my schedule, at times, is madness waiting to happen. In that, I am in need of an afternoon nap from time to time.
So.... to keep me healthy, I have just chatted with both coaches to revise/adapt the programs, so that I can continue to have an easy/rest day on Friday with BOTH protocols. And what is nice..... I can then use Fridays to explore other activities.... and rest.
Remember rest does not necessarily mean doing absolutely nothing..... it means (to me at least) the potential of doing other activities, and relax.....
So, this morning..... i did a comfortable ocean swim.... and will enjoy a nap later.