Guys. I’m so tired. The Bad Boy Reunion concert last night was unreal but I literally had to peel my eyelids open this morning. I only had about five hours of sleep so I am pretty exhausted. Oh, and there is no air conditioning at work. It’s going to feel like 42 degrees with the humidity today…KILL ME NOW. I will find a way to get my hands on a Starbucks iced venti something something on my lunch break.
Anyway, with my race just over two weeks away (!!!), it’s time to start what a lot of people dread: THE TAPER. I know a lot of people go crazy around this time – the reduced mileage and race day countdown can mess with you for sure. I truthfully don’t mind the taper one bit. I do love running but I appreciate the downtime just as much, especially because I know it’s necessary in order to have a successful race.
Here are five things I love most about tapering:
1. The extra downtime allows more opportunity to focus on food and hydration. When I’m running a lot of miles, I make all kinds of excuses to eat whatever I want, whenever I want. I like going back to basics in the weeks leading up to my races to ensure that I am well-fuelled for the big day. I make sure to stock my fridge and pantry with all of the things that make me feel good: fruits, vegetables, tofu, tempeh, whole grains, and water. I’ve been chugging Boxed Water when available (you can read more about it HERE and HERE). They are so supportive of healthy and active lifestyles and bonus: they plant two trees every time a photo is posted with the hashtag #ReTree. They are also committed to reducing our carbon footprint by using paper from well-managed forests for their packaging. A brand that supports both me and the environment? Yes, please.
2. I am able to vary my workouts a bit more. If you haven’t noticed, I started and stopped BBG practically in the same week. After trying out a few of the workouts, I decided I’d commit at another time because I felt like it was too much to handle with my current running schedule. Now that my mileage is reduced, I can do other things if I feel like it. I don’t know if I will necessarily do BBG as those workouts leave me pretty sore (probably not a good idea right now), but I am able to cross train a little more if I feel like it.
3. I get to strategize! The Golden Ultra is a crazy race and I’ve sort of been trying to stay away from some of the details because they terrify me. The elevation and the cut off times are kind of nerve-wracking. I think I just feel like I don’t want to slow down Emz and disappoint her if we miss a cut off because of me. I know this is not the way to think but I am just being honest. We’ve been talking a lot and I’ve been asking all kinds of questions about her experience last year so that I can try to mentally prepare myself/strategize for all three stages of the race. Look at the elevation for day two (LOL WHAT THE HELL?):
4. I can prioritize self-care and wellness. This means putting time aside to stretch, foam roll, maybe even get a massage! I’ve mentioned lately that I have trouble sleeping so with less intense training, I can (hopefully) do a better job at trying to get some extra minutes (maybe even hours) each day.
5. More social time. I can’t even count the number of times I’ve said “I can’t, I have a long run tomorrow.” Seriously. Two weekends ago, for example, I had to wake up early on both Saturday and Sunday to run 19 miles each day. Who wants to go out and stay up late the night before doing something like that? It affects my mood, my run, my energy levels, everything. Now I can say yes a little more while still squeezing in those not-so-long runs!
Do you love or hate the taper?
Disclaimer: This post was written in collaboration with Boxed Water. All opinions are my own. Thank you for your support!
Boxed Water is available at Loblaws and Sobeys locations across Canada.