The Post-Marathon Blues

The fall marathon season is about to wrap up.  The weekend cluster of marathons will soon diminish and the cold days of winter will follow.  Sure, there are a few marathons to choose from, but those are usually for more hardcore marathoners.  It ‘s not that far off until the winter and spring cluster of  marathons consisting of Disney, L.A. and the super bowl of marathons – Boston, plus many more.

Post Marathon Blues

Post Marathon Blues

This past weekend I was checking Facebook, and it seemed that everyone on the planet did a marathon.  Post after post after post by my friends relaying that they completed their race, celebrating a PR, or relaying their pure satisfaction at their accomplishment, and even some bemoaning their disappointment with their result.  I could hardly keep up with all the posts and that got me thinking; after all those months of training, now what for them?  Of course, my mind immediately triggered “Post-Marathon (or Half-Marathon) Blues.”  I’ve been there and know the feeling all too well.

It’s amazing the amount of time and energy us runners commit just to compete in a 3-5 hour race.  Months of training; long runs, speed work, hill repeats and nutrition tweaking.  Some of us get up ridiculously early to train, some train in the evening, many of those times in the cold and dark by ourselves.  Our families think we are nuts, but usually support us in our quest.  Then race day arrives, and like a blur, it’s over and we feel somewhat lost… and rightfully so.

The “Post Marathon Blues” can be tough, but rest assured it’s temporary like a cold or the flu.  It will go away, you just have to ride out the time.  Take that time to reconnect with your life and do some fun things you did before you sold your soul to the running world.  Enjoy your accomplishment!  It will not hurt you one bit to take a few weeks or even a month off before you lace up again, and when you do, slowly build back up to avoid injuring yourself.

Then get motivated for the tough winter months which is a lot tougher than summer;  short days, cold nights, layered clothing and frozen fluids!  Less people run but if you are looking to maintain your personal running fitness create a winter maintenance plan or find a running buddy.  Most local running groups keep the doors open with some sort of winter maintenance program or they keep doing what they have been doing.  Jump on board and YOU will be back in the swing of things full steam ahead keeping that burning fire inside lit.  All that will matter to you is your next marathon or half-marathon (the late winter/spring choices are abundant), oh, and the fall race that gave you the “Post-Marathon Blues,” well, it’s just a distant memory only to be brought back by glancing at that beautiful finisher’s medal!


Baby image courtesy of Justin Wellman.

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Categories: Boston Marathon, L.A.Marathon, Marathons, Running Groups, Running Motivation, Running Related, Running Tips, Social Media, Twitter, Why I Run
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  • May 07, 2013 4:53 PM

    I have been looking for some summer runs myself and the pickings are slim here in SoCal. Definitely feeling the blues until my half marathon season starts up in September. Great post!

  • Austin says:
    May 07, 2013 4:56 PM

    I’m one of those many people who recently ran a spring marathon (Eugene, in my case), and I have a fall marathon lined up too (MCM). I used the week after my race to reconnect with my life, and I plan on using the coming weeks to recharge and ease back into running before I have to start training for the fall. But it has felt amazing to just enjoy life without worrying about squeezing in training runs and other ancillary workouts! Thanks for posting this!

  • May 08, 2013 2:53 AM

    You would think we would learn to expect this every year, but nooooooo. There I am still, two weeks after my Marthon PR, pouting over ice cream and watching movies in the dark.

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