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The Rest Day: a true day “off.” Also: Ninjas invade the World Cup Final.

07/12/2010

Yesterday I took a day completely off from working out. It was my first official sweat-free day since April 25th, and before that my most recent day off had come after the marathon in March.

I still got a little sweaty tromping around through the woods, but I didn’t do anything else the rest of the day except putz around on the internet and watch the World Cup final.

 

Rest days. What’s your take?

 

I dread them.

I haven’t needed one in a while, and I didn’t really need one yesterday, but somehow, I woke up and realized that, short of allowing myself to feel entitled to eat more than the average person, I wouldn’t accomplish anything by rowing or running my requisite 20+ KM or 11+ miles (respectively) that day. And the idea just got into my head. Oh yeah. Rest days. I used to do those on a sort of regular basis. Then I decided to commit to it. A real, true, rest day.

The thing is, I’m always tired. Truly. Always. Even though I get plenty of sleep. Maybe this is just how life feels now? Perpetually foggy and sluggish?

Even so, a day off, for me, is just that: a day “off.”

A day where I’m guaranteed to feel sleepy, groggy, a little bit cranky, slightly hungover for no reason, and antsy for the next day to arrive so that I can get back to my lovely elevated-heart-rate burning muscle mania.

Partially, it must be an identity thing. I’m not me without running.

In fact, I’ve been trying to take a rest day for a while. I tell myself I’ll stop after 30 minutes, but the first 30 minutes is the crummy part. Once I hit about 40’, I don’t want to stop and settle for that rest day anymore. I get greedy for more miles, more meters, more minutes, more madness, more me-ness.  

Today, I was back at it with a medium-distance run of about 11.5 miles, and it felt like garbage but my pace was a bit quicker than it has been. When I reached the driveway, I was eager to surrender. Often I’ll get there and decide to tack on a few more miles, but today I was so over it.

Anyway, enough about bad runs and rest days, let’s talk a little bit about the World Cup final yesterday. Since the game was fugly, let’s not actually talk about the game.

Let’s talk about how everybody on the field looked like a character from a movie:

There were vampires:

Vam Piresie. I mean, Van Persie. He really is a kinda scary-looking, bloodthirsty dude. I can't take credit for this one; my mom pointed it out first.

There were pirates:

And when he gets tired of being a pirate, Carles Puyol will have no trouble fronting an 80's headbanger band. Dude's got options.

There was a riveting ninja scene, featuring Xabi Alonso and Nigel de Jong doing their own stunts:

Nigel de Jong and Jet Li: one and the same.

And to keep the ladies interested, there was even a cameo appearance by Spain’s most famous boy band:

Little known fact: Fernando Torres is the fourth Jonas Brother. Missing from photo: Cesc Fabregas.

All in all, not a bad show, even though the game was icky just like my impromptu rest day. I’m always regretful to see the World Cup come to an end.

Rest days and days off: How often do you take them? What is a “rest day” to you?

(Also, are Arjen Robben and the rest of the Dutch team a bunch of whiny babies or what?)

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. 07/12/2010 14:23

    i HATE rest days too. i try to avoid them as much as possible. unfortunately i’m going away this week and they might be making a reappearance in my life

  2. 07/13/2010 11:24

    Wow. You are tough. I NEED rest days. And I LOVE rest days. In fact, during just marathon training, I take two a week, otherwise I get injured. My body does not take high volume running well. It’s a good thing I can cross train with cycling and swimming.

    Also, do you own your own erg? Or do you go to a gym and erg? I just can’t get myself to erg at the gym…

    • 07/13/2010 15:30

      Ah wait, I should clarify!: For me, a rest day is a day without a long workout — running or otherwise. Training for the marathon I was only running 4 or sometimes 5 days a week; cross-training on the others. Now I’m running about 4 days a week. I try to never run more than two or three days in a row because I don’t handle high volume well either. On my non-running days I’m doing an equivalent amount of rowing, and occasionally, other xt. So it’s almost like the rowing days are “rest days” from the running days, and vice versa. If I were exclusively a runner, you bet yo booty I’d be taking at least a rest day per week. These knees can’t handle it.

      I have an erg at home when I’m visiting my parents, but living on my own, I use gym ergs. I tell myself I’ll do some other machine, but they’re always full and have that silly 20 minute limit nobody likes following. The erg seems to be the only machine that’s open… hahaha

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