Getting sick during Marathon Training

After traveling for almost 2 weeks, months of stress at work, and not eating my usual healthy diet, my body gave in last weekend. It started with me feeling dizzy and lightheaded. Then became a hoarse voice and congested head, and then came the fever. At one point, I wasn’t sure I was ever going to get better. My fever wouldn’t budge, and I was completely exhausted, all the time. 
After the first couple of days, I reached out to my running coach to a) let him know I was missing runs because I was sick, and b) get his advice on what to do. Only 3 weeks into marathon training, and only a couple of weeks out from Rock n Roll Chicago, missing more than a week of runs was not exactly how I’d planned training to go. 
My coach reminded me that having this happen now is so much better than in another 10 weeks when I should be sharpening my skills as opposed to now, when I’m still adding to my base. My concern is that I’d picked up some serious speed over the last few months, and was really happy with how my runs had been going (minus the terrible 8 miles in Virginia Beach). 

So how am I going to get myself back into the swing of things? 

  • Listen to my coach. He suggested that I get back into my runs slowly. No pushing for speed, or back to where I should be distance. He suggested lots of stretching and foam rolling while I was still down and out. I didn’t do it daily, but enough to keep my flexibilityas normal as I could. 
  • Listen to my body. My goal is to get in a few easy miles this morning, and then go to yoga in Milennium Park. I’m not going to push anything hard, just see where I am, and getting the kinks back out. 
  • Refocus on healthy foods. When I’m sick, I do try to fuel with healthy stuff, but inevitably, I end up with some less than healthy stuff too. By getting back to normal, my body will be field to get back to normal too. 
  • Be prepared. I will dedicate some good time this weekend to getting my home back in a state of order. This helps my mind be clear, and have healthy, go to foods ready to eat. Meal prep and workout planning are both happening this weekend.
  • Remember my why. I decided to run Chicago this fall because I wanted to mentally and physically challenge myself. Did I know the craziness that I’d be facing at work? No. But in reality, that’s exactly why I’m doing this. When everything around me is going crazy, I can count on my runs and my workouts to be there, and be only driven by me. I get in what I put out. Period. But I also knew I wanted to run for Girls on the Run Chicago as a SoleMate. They are an amazing organization, and I’m proud to be helping them reach more girls, teaching them to bethe next generation of badass women doing amazing things. 

So, back to training I go. It won’t be pretty, and it’s going to take some time rebuilding my speed, but getting back to it will feel amazing. 

Have you gotten sick during marathon training?

Best advice for coming back?

Have you donated to my GOTR page yet? 

3 thoughts on “Getting sick during Marathon Training

  1. kristenk

    Good luck! I’ve been right where you are (with a half instead of a full) and I know how scary it is to lose a week of training. But your coach is right, at least it’s happening now and not later. I think it’s so awesome you’re running for GOTR and those girls are all rooting for you!

  2. I’m right there with you! Didn’t finish out my first week of training because I came down with a stomach virus. Just finished a strong second week of training, but now I feel a cold coming on (my husband is getting over one). I’m keeping in mind that it’s better for this to happen now when I’m just building a base instead of during the higher mileage, but it’s still a bummer!

  3. The Dude Run Run

    Sorry to hear you are sick and I hope you are getting better. I agree with you on the runs. I travel a lot myself and work and real life get the better me of me all too often. The running is my center, my calm, my time to focus. I have faith in you. You will adapt and adjust to whats needed and meet your goal! The important thing is to keep trying. Speed and time be damned just getting out there is awesome like you!

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