Friday, February 6, 2009

When doing less is doing more


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My son has had a tough week. Last Saturday he injured his big toe and he has been slowly recovering since then. He's also been feeling under the weather and is staying home from school today. Many kids stay home from school when they're sick but my son always plows through. He's in 4th grade but, up until today, he hasn't missed a single day of school. He won a perfect attendance award at the end of 1st grade and never looked back. I respect him for his dedication but I admire him more for deciding that his well being is more important than an award.

I wasn't feeling great yesterday and left for home a little early in hopes of getting some rest. I went to bed fully prepared to take a real rest day today; no running, elliptical or any other kind of workout. I have not done that since mid September which was the last time I remember feeling ill. I rose at my regular time and felt a bit weak. I got some coffee and planned to go back upstairs and watch the news rather than run.

Of course I didn't do that. Instead I decided that I'd run an easy mile just to get my heart rate up. Once I started I didn't want to stop and ran my regular distance. I even tried a speed technique that was suggested by one of my more experienced runner friends..

It might seem like a noble thing to press on when you're feeling ill but there are situations when pushing can make things worse. I'm feeling okay but not great after that hard workout. Running instead of resting could have backfired and put me out for the entire day. I think I can learn a lesson from my 9 year old son who understands that taking care of yourself is more important than an award or a goal.

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