Post Race Blues. Is That a Thing?

3 weeks ago I ran my 8th marathon. For 9 days after I had family in town to occupy my time and help me recover. 10 days later I ran for the first time following the marathon. I’m currently participating in my 2nd week of a combination HIIT (high-intensity interval training), weight training, core work with Tony Horton’s 22-minute hardcore and 3x run a week. I’m getting a groove back but I’m also feeling like I’m missing something.

I wouldn’t say I’m suffering from depression in my current state. I know this is a medical diagnosis, and actually yes, I was diagnosed by my PCP and treated with medication and psychotherapy in college. Thankfully, I have been off medications since college with self-management of exercise, meditation, and improved nutrition without any setbacks (treatments vary from person to person). Depression is a combination of genetic, biological, environmental, and psychological factors and for some medication is one of the treatments necessary to improve one’s quality of life. However, do I think some physicians know a “little about a lot of things” and overprescribe without getting to the root or seeking out specialists, maybe. But I’m going off-topic.

I’m no specialist on sports psychology but I can just tell you my feelings post-race, as a simple blogger. When you set goals for yourself in a competitive nature such as marathon training, you work on that goal anywhere from 16-24 weeks. 3-6 months of your life is a schedule and build-up for a 1-day event. When the time comes and you meet your goal and it’s all over, just like that, and your time is no longer consumed with a plan, I personally feel lost. I’m not sure what to follow next or what my purpose is going forward. (I’m not saying that if I don’t run I don’t have a purpose but as someone who has always exercised it is part of my life, just like eating lunch or going to sleep). I can tell you this feeling occurs after every big race that I have trained for so I typically sign up for another race. So far I haven’t done so, but I probably will and that gives me a light at the end of the tunnel.

I’m not sure if my feelings and actions are a sense of drive, fear, or addiction, but what I do know is, while I may not love the training, I love the schedule and meeting my goals. Why is my goal to always run? I like to think that it keeps me healthy and it’s something I can do that a lot of others think they can’t but really there is no deep-rooted answer other than it gives me something to do.

Anyone else in the same boat?


2 thoughts on “Post Race Blues. Is That a Thing?

  1. Yes absolutely! I ran my first half April 3rd and afterwards I had no motivation to run! It was so weird, I just felt so blah about it! I finally ran this week and it felt amazing and so comforting! I am on the hunt for my next race and am definitely getting out of the rut! I hope you feel better soon! 🙂

    1. Thanks Jenny for your comment. It’s nice to know I’m not the only one who experiences this. I just entered the London Marathon lottery for 2017 and I found out there is a half marathon in the town I live in in October. Let the road to recovery begin!

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