Tuesday, 20 July 2010

Addiction and Fatigue

If you could personify an endorphin, I think it would be a bouncy, over-excited puppy with legs a bit too long for it's body and boundless energy. It's that post-exercise rush that's been fuelling me for a good while.

I was browsing in a bookshop today, and I was reading that people can actually get addicted to endophins and the buzz they get from them. Sally, from my running club has been telling me this for weeks but I laughed it off - surely an addiction in it's very nature should be something that's unhealthy?!

I do love the feeling of doing lots and lots of activity and as I've mentioned in the past, rest days cause me all sorts of problems as I'm bored and tired, twitchily waiting for my next fix. Like a smoker who says they'll give up after they finish the packet, I say I'm going to rest, but just after one more workout.

Unfortunately, endorphins don't last forever. I suppose it is sort of comparable with drug addicts, in that they start needing more and more as they are not satisfied with smaller doses. I keep wanting to work harder, and longer to get the fully exercised feel, to get that pumping post-training surge.

Gettin up at 5am to go swimming is all good, but following it with a day at work, post-work run, spinning class, weights session and swim probably is a little bit excessive..

I never thought I would be saying this, but I am absolutely exhausted. Today the body just said NO. I've had a niggly knee issue during running which I have mostly ignored - resorting just to icing it as much as possible. It got a bit worse in the last week so I have actually taken the advice of other people and I'm scrapping running for a few days - until the triathlon on Sunday anyway. It's a common overuse injury that people get when they're just doing too much too fast. 

I realised today that it's not just a niggly knee. My whole body is in a state of fatigue and one rest day a week with this much exercise is simply not good enough! When you're yawning in the gym you know you've hit the wall.

The very heavily pregnant Kathy, who works in the gym, informed me that recovery is actually the body's way of getting fitter, and unless I give my body time to adapt to these changes, I've never progress quickly in the fitness stakes. As much as I didn't want to listen (she's told me many a time to stop and rest), now is the time to take heed.

So, as part of being healthy I'm obviously not giving up, but I'm certainly gong to cut down, and try to take an "everything in moderation" stance. So, this evening I came home from the gym early, got into my pjs and settled down with a cuppa and my cuddly hippo.

Time for some R&R.

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