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When PIDS sets in


Clean up after runners in the marathon

We call it PIDS.  Post Ironman Depression Syndrome.  There is also PMDS - not what you think - Post Marathon Depression Syndrome.  And really then PTDS - Post Triathlon Depression Syndrome. And it goes on and on.

Just when you were on cloud nine, you finished your race, and you were ecstatic, suddenly everyone around you stares at you blankly when you begin that twentieth telling of how you passed that 18 year old at the water stop.

September and October mark a sad period for endurance athletes.  We give up our regular workout plans and begin life as we used to know it.  For a few days, it's actually nice to sleep in instead of run.  It's nice to not HAVE to swim.  But, after a few weeks, we begin to miss it.  You are not alone.  Most endurance athletes experience some sort of sadness about each season coming to an end.

Actually, the off season is a great time to try new things, maybe mountain biking, hiking, or cyclo-cross.  It's also time to work on the imbalances that have occurred from months of pushing your body.  Try hitting the weight room, or taking that yoga or pilates class that you didn't have time for.  Focus on moving in ways you haven't for months - move in different planes, work your flexibility, and do it in a way that's not rhythmical, or doesn't have a pattern to it.

It's also time to focus on unstructured training.  Most endurance athletes spend their season counting duration and distance and feel guilty when they miss a workout.  It's time to let the guilt go.  It's tough not to regret getting a daily workout in, but it's important to get back to the balance of your job, your friends, and your non-athletic life. (There is more to life than endurance sports.  Swear.)  So, if you feel like working out, great, if not, now is the time to skip it without guilt.

Spend your off time celebrating, fixing your imbalances, working your weaknesses and enjoying life.  After all, 2010 is only two months away.