It was not the best spring for me as far as running goes. I ran a few marathons and they were not terrible, but they were nowhere near as fast as they should have been. I was dealing with some hip issues, but I did not think the issues were bad enough to be slowing me down that much.
I had been making weekly trips to Tulsa to see Dr. Chris Barnes and he was taking care of that problem. I continued to run, and run a lot. I was working way too many hours and not sleeping nearly enough. Looking back now, I see that was the root of all my problems. I had to find a way to get more rest.
But, being a competitive athlete, that was the last thing I wanted to do. I felt like every second I wasn’t working, I should be running. Even if that meant only getting 4 hours of sleep at night. Yes, it was that bad!!
Things improved a little after the OKC Memorial Marathon. My training group was over and we were not quite as busy at Red Coyote where I worked. I was able to work a few less hours and sleep a little more. My race times improved a little, but were still not as fast as I wanted them to be. I was still constantly tired and sore. I realized I needed to make some life changes.
One afternoon, I was visiting Tulsa and was enjoying a nice afternoon bike ride on Riverside. I took a break and checked my messages. I had a message from Dr. Barnes, the very same one who helped me get over my hip issues. He asked if I was interested in moving to Tulsa and working for him. Of course I was interested!! We set up an interview and the next thing I knew, I was packing up and moving to Tulsa.
What does this have to do with running? A lot! I have lived in Tulsa for 3 weeks, I am working in a less stressful environment, and I am not on my feet all day. As a result, I am getting more sleep, and I am overall, just a happier person.
I ran 15 miles last Sunday morning and I have not felt that good while running since last fall. I am very hopeful for my fall races. I anticipate seeing some improvements!
Remember this: when you are training hard for something, the mental portion is just as demanding as the physical portion. If you are stressed out and tired from life events, you are not going to feel good while running. Before you can hit it hard on the roads, make sure you are feeling good mentally.
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