You have trained so hard over the past few months to reach an incredible goal of finishing a half or full marathon. However, the feelings you have after finishing can change. Post-marathon blues is a common feeling a few days after a big race. You may feel lost, a complete lack of motivation, fatigue and maybe depression. These are very common feelings many runners go through after a race, but there are ways to get you back on track quickly. Here are a few ways to stay motivated after your race:
- Rest - Your body just went through a beating the last couple months. It needs to recover. Taking a week or two off will help your body repair and recover. You will feel antsy, but it is important to be free of running and working out to reset your body and mind.
- Cross Train – After one or two weeks, you need to get moving again. Do not push yourself back to running too fast, but have fun with cross training. Go for a walk, bike ride, elliptical or swim to start to mentally get back into it. Start slow so your body can adjust accordingly.
- Plan a New Event – You are ready to start thinking about the next race or vacation. Looking forward to the next event on your schedule will curb the down feelings. Plan a shorter race or one that is the same distance. Schedule a short or surprise vacation with your spouse and kids to make sure you are always looking forward.
- Set New Goals – After 26 days, most runners are ready to get back to it. Start by setting new goals (short and long term goals). Short term goals could be adding strength training for the next couple weeks to change things up or training for a shorter race. A long term goal could be a half, full, or ultra-marathon. You can start looking at new training programs to change up your running to reach new times also.
There is not one combination that works for everyone to shake the post-marathon blues. However, by using a few of these ideas, you should be able to curve the blues.