Friday, September 20, 2013

School - Sick - Race ... Beating the Usual September Cycle

Ah, there is nothing that says Fall Marathon like two sick kids in the house.  How many years have we approached fall goal races, which as luck would have it take place about three weeks after the school year begins, with some germ or bug terrorizing us?  The timeline of course is set up to make us fail.  Train all summer in the warm, outside air. No one gets sick for about three months. School starts, the kids start mixing and mingling with all those other kids, and before we can say "cover your nose when you sneeze" one or the other of them has picked up a nasty hitchhiker of a bug.

This year, we seem to have two different bugs in the house - one for each kid.  I could be worried about how that would impact my big race. I could lament about how this always happens, and gnash my teeth.  But I won't. Because I have figured out how to beat the dreaded school starting-sick kids-fall race cycle. The key? I will tell you.

It's not a magic pill.  

It's not some special herb.  

It's not through manipulations of diet or exercise routine.  

It's not more sleep, vitamins, or lemon water.  

The secret for me was .... 

Shh .... 

Come closer ....

Here it is...

I already ran my goal race.

Yes, folks, I do believe it is that simple.  By scheduling our goal race in either August or the first weekend of September, I think we have finally figured out how to not get sick for our big race.

You may call this cheating or think it is throwing in the towel.  I prefer to think of it as a "if you can't beat 'em, join 'em" type of thing.  I mean, if your kids were constantly getting sick in September, wouldn't you eventually stumble upon the idea (even if just by accident) of saying screw it and race in August instead?  You're welcome for that handy tip.  Now, if I ever do actually figure out how to keep everyone healthy in September, I will let you know.

In the meantime, I can care for my kids without that selfish, niggling feeling of "gee, hope I don't catch this."  I mean, don't get me wrong, I really hope I don't catch either of these bugs, but now at least I won't have to worry about it undermining all the training I have done this summer on top of just making my life a living hell.

So, that's my life in a nutshell.  Besides feeling like I am living inside some germ factory, it's race weekend here locally.  I won't be running the Half or the Full, but I am scheduled to be on a relay team I threw together at the last minute with the help of some friends.  A big five mile segment is all I can expect to run on Sunday, and at this point that is a good thing.  With the kids sick, I haven't run since Monday and I have no expectations of running before Sunday.  I could hit the treadmill, but I am so not a fan that I think I would just rather take the rest days.  We'll see. In either case, five miles on Sunday will be about all I will want to handle.  The saddest part to this weekend is that the kids will miss the kids' run for the first time since I think they could walk.  Their streak is coming to an end.  I guess it had to happen sometime.

If you are racing this weekend, have fun! And stay healthy!

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