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Feeling a bit weary, any advice?

Hi lovely running fiends,

Sorry, long post alert!

So, it has not been the greatest week of my running career. Not awful, just not great. It all started with a grumpy 4km run on Wednesday, after a PB on reaching 12km on Sunday. I should have been on a high, but I wasn't. Got out of the wrong side of the bed, and had a miserable run in the rain where I felt that 4km was quite enough and I was happy to finish. Had a Pilates class on Thursday, and felt a twinge in my piriformis, or, as Fishypieface charmingly calls it, arse-cheek-itis. Was still twingy on Thurs and Friday, so didn't run. Also a little sore in the hip and hamstring. I rested, I was good. Made it out today and managed 7km, but it was a bit of a struggle. Nothing hurting as such, just hard. Didn't feel like going further, and because of recent piriformis twinge, decided it better not to.

Have been mulling over my sudden fatigue and lack of drive with running, and have decided it must be mental/emotional. I have been a bit achy/sore in places, but nothing dramatic – I just don't feel strong. And this makes me a bit sad after a summer of feeling really resilient and fit.

Work has been awful this week; really awful. I have been coming home with real mental fatigue from the day. So I wonder, do you think mental / emotional strain renders you weaker when it comes to running? Especially running longer distances? I am just trying to find a reason for why, all of a sudden, running is very hard for me, and I am feeling so physically weak? I know you need mental resilience to get through a long run, so can only think I have drained my reserves of it this week at work, where everything has gone wrong and people are behaving like A-holes!

Any thoughts, running pals? I am a bit worried my mojo has packed its bags and left me for a more positive runner. :-(

Sadie-runs x

P.S. I am pleased I ran 7km this morning though. That's something.

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Sounds to me like your thinking is a bit more wonky than your running there Sadie. You've run a 12k a 4k and a 7k in a week - and you think you're not doing ok?

If you're exhausted from work getting out at all is an achievement and perhaps some of the loss of mojo is caused by a bit of a dip after achieving your 10k distance and now not knowing what you're working towards? Perhaps it's time for a new goal?

Whenever I am feeling exhausted after work, but feel I need to get out there I aim to do something short and fast (for me). My favourite is audiofuel's 180 pyramid intervals. It's done in 20 mins but I always feel a sense of achievement at the end and weirdly energised.

Don't over analyse it - it's not been a great week. Next week will be better and we've got lots of mellow, misty autumn running to look forward to.

You'll soon find your happy running place again. Xx

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Aw, thanks Deb. 😘 While I have been getting out there and doing it, I suppose it is the lack of enjoyment and the struggle that is worrying me. And feeling weak. Every run has been hard fought! Wonky thinking though, is probably at the root of it. My goal was to aim for 15km, but I am just feeling too unfit to get above 7km right now.

Maybe some intervals and short runs for a week might be a good change that I need? I’ll try it. I’ll try anything!

Thank you so much for replying. 😘

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How long is it since you had a week off running? That’s recommended a couple of times per year. Alternatively it may just be that the 12k PB took more out of you than you realised.

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Thanks for replying, Arthur. I did have a week off in late August, but I think you might be onto something; that 12km may be the culprit! I should have rested longer, or did shorter runs for a while after maybe.

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🙄 What Debs said, with bells on. You've had a great week achievement-wise. Got through hell at work and put in some fantastic distances. I'd take that!

Perhaps pull back a little next week to let your body rest up a bit, good to do every few months and maybe learn to love it again!

All the best 😘

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Oh yes. 😁 I suppose my despair came from how hard it felt and how little I was enjoying it. 😞 That was not an unusual running week for me (in fact it was less kms than normal), couldn’t understand why so fatigued! Lightbulb moment - work stress interfering with head/body = dial back on goals! Doh! Thank you for your lovely reply, Sutsha. Hope all is well with you. x

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I'm great Sadie. Was keen to push on after my op in the summer but had to do some dialling back myself as my calf was starting to niggle and I know better than to keep going and end up out of the game. I've decided to do some winter training with a max of around the 10K mark, so that come Spring I'm ready to do some serious work and increase my gains. That's today's plan!! X

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That sounds like a great plan! 👍 Happy running, dear. x

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I have a few thoughts on this:

1. If you are emotionally drained I fund running much harder and I’m just not on form.

2. As you say with a recent PB and a full on Summer I suggest a full week of v v little just to allow your body to fully recouperate. Even if you feel ok just do 2 or 3 v slow and v short runs.

3. Do you take vit D?

4. In the future you could factor in some strength exercises if you haven’t already, that will help.

Take care xxx

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Thank you dear ju-ju for your thoughts. I am going to try a week of very short, slow runs, just to keep my hand (legs?!) in, but not to exhaust myself further. I have seen you do this, and I look up to you as a runner, so if it works for you...:-) I think I was shocked at going from so, so strong to feeling weak as a kitten in just one week. Maybe the 12km was a bit much for me right now.

I haven't been taking Vit D because of the hot, sunny summer - figured I had built up my reserves! But I have some in the house, so might start taking them again as the sunny days are fewer. xxx

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I would get some early nights, catch upon some sleep, rest from running and eat and drink healthy Restore yourself sorta thing. Sleep is a good cure I find 😃👍💪🏃‍♀️

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I am a good gal and eat healthily – think sleep is part of the issue. I go to bed pretty early, but have been waking up really early worrying about the stupidest work things. I need to find a fix for that. (New job!?!) Thanks MissW. xxx

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I was thinking the same as Deb and Ju-Ju said - firstly that is not a bad week at all for someone whose mojo has gone! In comparison, I had a couple of times last month where I went over a week without running - that really got me worried! And also as Ju-Ju said, there are always going to be ups and downs along the way.

I'd throw in a couple more things - I have found that I am most susceptible to loss of motivation (aka gremlins, aka loss of mojo) immediately after reaching a new milestone, so (e.g.) when I was pushing my distance up last month, it was after doing my 12k, and then my 14k, that I hit the buffers.

It's at those times I think that we need to remind ourselves it's OK to get out and just do a short and/or slow run (whatever short and slow means to us, personally), so long as we keep the momentum up. Take a leaf out of Ju-Ju's book - she's out every day, but sometimes it's a very short run, which is fine, as she's still running.

The other thought is that when I am struggling for motivation, I don't think about the run ahead, I just tell myself that all I have to do is don my running gear and step outside the front door, everything else will take care of itself. Somehow by just thinking about taking that first small step ("just step outside the door, how hard can that be?") it makes the whole thing seem less daunting.

Hope that helps (a bit) and as the song goes.... keep on running :)

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This helps a lot, thanks Hoagy. x It is good to hear from you lot that short, slow runs for a while will be a good thing. I must not forget that in the grand scheme of things, I am still a new runner, and need to dial back sometimes. My relative "youthfulness" as a runner shows in my fear of not constantly building up. I worry that if I don't keep the long runs up, then I will rapidly lose the ability to run those distances. Duh – if I don't cut myself some slack and give myself a break now and then I run the risk of ruining it for myself (both in terms of mojo and the physical side) for longer. God, what a learning curve, eh?

Yes, I managed three runs this week, but that is because I am a foolhardy, determined little bugger. 😬 Who is a bit stupid too, and should practice what she preaches!

Thank you so much for your kind advice, it is so useful. xxx

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Oh Sadie. I feel your sadness. After a summer of great achievements I too fell into a lull. Calf injury made running miserable and was disappointed in myself for not achieving what I hoped.

I ran A LOT after 10k graduation and clearly my body wasn’t ready for it. I was forced to take a week out and now slowly getting back to it. 😊

I find running relieves any stress I’m feeling. I am interested in ju-ju- advice on vitamins - worth a go?🤔

I’m rambling. I would say take some time out. Rest extra days and run when you really FEEL like it. Forget about distance and time. Sending hugs. 🤗 🤗 xx

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Oh Rip. Thank you for the sympathy and the empathy, so needed right now. I think I too felt unbreakable after reaching 10k, and maybe over-did things. I just wanted to keep progressing I suppose. But there is such a thing as too much too soon! Is your calf healed now? Well done on dealing with it by taking a break – I hope you enjoy being back out there and get all nice and strong again. Big hug. xxx

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It’s lots better thank you. But now I’ve pulled back on mileage. Foam rolling like crazy and taken up yoga 🧘🏻‍♀️ . 😊 I’ve only been running since April so think too much too soon for my ageing body! 😂

Pop a good movie on, huge bar of chocolate and relax. You’ve achieved so much already there’s no turning back. xx

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Oh pleased to hear that! I have been foam rolling too, and also calf raising like a loon. 😁 Glad you are getting into yoga. It’s great for us runners. Thanks again for your loveliness. I feel much better about how to proceed now. xxx

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Sadie, I feel for you as your post is one I was going to write myself today. I said to my husband after running yesterday, I just feel fatigued. Definitely not enjoying my running at the mo and finding the effort to complete runs just too much. I am going to take the advice of both ju-ju- and ArthurJG and take a week off but I worry that I will lose the fitness I have worked so hard to achieve.

You have been doing brilliantly and maybe just need a rest too. Take good care, mojo just needs re-charging :) :)

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Aw Lori, sorry to hear you are feeling it too. Don't worry about losing fitness after taking one week off. I did that in August, and was able to run the same distances with the same ease immediately after. (I think my problem was I went a bit crazy when I came back refreshed and maybe pushed too hard.) A week will not make a difference, trust me. Keep active, but don't run.

After reading all the great advice on here, I am going to try 2-3 really short runs a week until I feel back up to strength again. No more than 3k at a time for me for a while. I think a week off will do you the world of good, if you haven't done that for a while. Hope you are feeling much better soon, dear Lori. xxx

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Thanks Sadie, I will follow the advice. Must be something in the air :( . Hope you too feel back on top soon :) :)

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Oh Lori sending hugs! 🤗 Maybe it’s the time of year? Taking a week off will not affect your fitness. I took a week off recently and legs felt better after being rested. If you’re not enjoying running a rest is good. Xx

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Aw thanks Rip, hug appreciated! Will heed the advice. Life and work posing challenges out of left field so probably hasn't helped. Hopefully just a blip! Glad you are feeling better but keep taking good care :) :)

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more sympathy comments here - maybe Ripcurlrana71 is right. Change of seasons? So many people feeling similarly, here and elsewhere, that I know :(

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Thank you icklegui, grateful for your sympathy and support. I hope things pick up for you son too, sending virtual hugs :) :)

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virtual hugs all round, thank you xx . We'll be right again soon!

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Ah Sadie, sorry to read this. Looks like you've got some great advice there too.

I'm also feeling similarly. Work is absolutely taking it out of me and I am quite down and stressed - to which running should be a help but I can't get out there, some sort of mental block for sure, I don't have to spare a whole hour to aim for those long distances, just 5K would be great, but...

I'm also trying to get back to my GP, but it's so hard to get an appointment with a particular doc :( and I want the one I've been seeing about my thyroid!! I know my Vit D is suspect (I take after my dad, apparently), but need to make sure everything else is right otherwise I'll never cope with work as well.

Anyway - sympathy comment! You've been doing so well and I'm sure that running-wise this is just a blip. And also - you have actually gone and run!! So, you've run when it's tough, which is even more impressive mentally. Physically - maybe the others are on the money with dialing it back briefly, but you'll work it out, I'm sure. x

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Thank you for the much-appreciated (and much needed) sympathy reply, icklegui, and so sorry you are battling similar issues. 😞 Work stress really plays with your head, and after a bad week at work, I can really see the difference in my running mojo. Which in turn makes me realise how much of this running malarkey is mental. I too am feeling down - mostly due to unsupportive bosses. So that means a difficult conversation, if I ever build up the courage to having it!

I do hope you get in to see your GP soon. And that you get back to the running. It is hard fighting a mental block, and I smell one coming my way, so going to keep running regardless - but just short ones, but with the intention of keeping the routine going. Can you run before work? Or do you have to start super early? Hugs to you, my lovely. xxx

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Oh that's rough. Building up to a tough chat with a boss is really - well, I can definitely sympathise. Some of mine are the opposite problem - one of my bosses I consider a friend and I'm terrified of letting her down, she trusted me to work with her. Another has his own problems right now and so I'm trying to step up without badgering him too much - and without worrying about him as well! Do you have supportive people at your level that you can talk with before you have to approach your boss?

I could run before work but at the moment getting up is a massive struggle. It's as if someone's switched my thyroid hormone, which I take on waking up, for sleeping pills!

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Hi Sadie. It all about perspective( my least favourite thing) I guess.. normally a 12, 7 and 4Km would have you smiling and bouncing around ..

Obviously work stuff is weighing on you mentally, been there done that , not easy to shake that off especially when running and tends to amplify minor twinges into the worst case scenario's.

You have come along way and accomplished some big milestones ..

In the scheme of things a week or 2 off running won't have to much affect ..

Be kind to yourself, rest, relax and treat yourself 😀😀

The work stuff will sort itself hopefully and your normal service running wise will resume ..

Take care and we will see you back running soon 😀

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Oh thanks Rob, really wise words there. I have a terrible habit of over-analysing and worrying, especially with my running that I love so much. I will be kind to myself (and pray that work is kinder to me next week 😬). Thank you so much for your thoughtful reply. x

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Run shorter.. run different routes... run backwards or sideways...run slower and longer, then run shorter with a bit of speed...shake it up :)

But firstly.. be kind to yourself.... :)

Aches and pains, twinges and soreness... a horrid debilitating and wearing week at work...Blimey! It is a wonder you could stand never mind run:)

12... 4...7... all adding up to a heck of lot of running when you were not feeling wonderful!

So..make sure that pain in the Butt is going... there are some great exercise on the NHS site for piriformis stretching.. ( I did them when I had my trapped sciatic nerve! )

Rest up... a few good nights sleep.. good food, hydration and bit of TLC.

Huge hugs from me... and all of us rooting for you.

You will get there... this is just a blip.. and there is a reason for it:)

Chin up.. cheer up... the mojo is just around the corner xxx

PS

I did a really slow 8K today, repeating, yet again, after being on the IC, Ju's plan... and if it is any consolation the last 2K were really snail stretching!!! xx

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Thank you darling Flossie. I shall try all those things! Shorter runs do sound tempting right now, and it is heartening that all you wise lot think this is the way forward in the short term. I am being quite hard on myself, but that is definitely my go-to when stressed at work. 😱 You have made me feel so much better, so thank you, from the bottom of my heart. 😘

Side note: so happy you are out there doing your thing again! You are such a resilient 🐌, a runner I truly look up to. Hope things start to feel easier as you progress again on Ju-Ju’s fabulous plan. xxx

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I think you have ran great this week!! Much more than I have achieved. Chill out today and try not to overthink it. Fresh start next week . Happy running

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Thanks Deals! I am amazed I managed to run; I just don’t want to lose the joy, and freaked myself out by running grimly. 😬 Rest and going a bit easier on myself is the cure maybe. 🤞

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Oh Sadie ☹️ Yes I do think mental stress definitely affects us physically, it's draining. You said yourself you don't feel strong. That's your body telling you something, ie be gentle with yourself, lots of rest and TLC until you're feeling stronger.

The work thing is undoubtedly causing a dip in your energy levels so don't fight it. These things happen to all of us and life gets in the way sometimes. Also, the longer distances can take a toll on our bodies. I always prepare for when I start to do longer distances again by getting more sleep, eating more protein, drinking more water, etc in the weeks beforehand and obviously during. This makes a big difference for me so it might be worth trying something similar.

But you're a runner so after a little rest you'll be good to go again. The roads and trails will wait for you.

When you're feeling a bit better why not run somewhere different and beautiful. No time or distance restraints. Relish each step and wonder at what your body can do. Enjoy it. If you run only 1K that's fine. If it's more that's fine too. Just "feel" your way on the run and listen to your body. Leave the watch at home.

This is a blip. You're a runner so you'll get back to it soon. Take care of yourself xxx

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Thank you so much, IP, for your lovely reply. This running lark is strange, and just when I thought I was right in the swing of it, it throws me this little curveball! It is just the fear of losing the joy of running that got to me, but I will woman up, accept that I need to adapt a bit by listening to my body, and not get all fatalistic about it. The replies on here have really talked me down from the ledge – this place is magical for that. Thank you for the great advice. xxx

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You're still doing great. Don't lose sight of that for one minute. I hope the work situation improves soon, but in the meantime take the pressure off and run for enjoyment only - no PBs, no demanding distances - you will find your rhythm and your happy place again. Huge hugs x

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That's good advice, thanks Linda. It has been a summer of brilliant new achievements, doing the 10km programme, running faster and feeling more confident. I just have to learn that taking a step back before embracing the next challenge is the wise thing to do. I guess i am still learning! There is always something new to learn about running, right? xxx

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Indeed. And there you have it - already imagining the next challenge - mojo not lost, just taking a well timed rest 😀

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You’re physically drained from your epic run last week, you’re mentally drained from a taxing week at work; it really is no surprise you’re mojo is flagging a bit. But don’t despair, it’ll return. I find, as important as running is for my mental well-being, when I’ve had “one of those weeks” sometimes a little break is in order followed by a “be what it may” kind of run when I'm ready to run again....no pressure, no worries, run as far as you want, as fast or slow as you want, just listen to your body.

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Thanks dear Sask. Yes, I am sure this is the case, but it is so helpful to have other people confirm this to me. Even if I can see the cause, I am rubbish at believing that is what it is. For now, I am going to try and just go out and run a bit when I feel like it; and if I don't feel desperately like it, I will go out and just listen to some good music and run around the block a few times. :-) I don't know why I am feeling so worried about it – I have to remember I run to keep fit and because I like it. I am not planning to run a marathon nor have any kind of race coming up, so why the flipping pressure?! Thanks for replying. xxx

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Hi Sadie-runs....this definitely sounds to me like you’re drained from work, without a doubt and being drained affects your emotions which then affects your whole being so it’s no wonder your running is suffering, you have been so busy pushing yourself over the summer & have made amazing progress & achieved so much so maybe you ought to stick to shorter runs? Somewhere between 5 & 8k instead of pushing for 12, which is amazing btw!! You know about listening to your body, so choose your distances accordingly....your mojo has gone nowhere, it’s just taking a backseat while your tired body tries to keep up with your demands!! Go easy on yourself Sadie...don’t be sad, you are a strong runner who we all admire, being surrounded by A-holes would drain anybody’s reserves...have a few days rest, I’m sure you’ll be back on top form very soon & I’ll be watching for that triumphant Sadie-runs post xxxx

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I have been horrible to my poor body, that is true! It was fun though, but you are right darling MC, I need to dial back on the old drill sergeant routine a bit, and rest and be a bit kinder to myself. It would probably be healthier, like you say, to not always be aiming to go further every time. I have got to 12k; so I think for a while just running for fun is a good idea, and then when strong again, consider what goal next. I was feeling so strong, and maybe underestimated how hard 12k would be on my body! A time to recuperate, from what you good folks on here have been suggesting, should sort me out! (And the sports massage I have booked for Friday. I am going to get the beefcake to sort my arse cheek out, that's for sure.) 😂 xxx

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Lol...we know what wonders a beefcake can do!!! Just remember the joy of running for a while xx

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I haven’t trawled through the other replies yet....... but! When work is hard, and you are mentally drained every day, it’s like fitness.... your brain isn’t used it for such prolonged periods so when you sleep, you have so much more sorting and filing to do, that the brain itself isn’t resting....

I have periods of this (in the middle of one at the moment) and I just run shorter or take short little walk breaks (20-30 seconds) which seems to offer a reset of sorts.... also helps the toe cramp which is still bugging me after 5/6k!

As you say, the good thing is you went out and still did 7k and that in itself will help your mental well being!

Have tried running with the “headspace” app for mindfulness? My daughter swears by it (haven’t tried it myself)

Big love and hugs to get back to your supper Sadie self! ❤️⭐️⭐️⭐️🏃‍♀️🏃‍♀️

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You make a good point, Mitch, and it was kinda what I was thinking too. I find emotional stress so much harder to deal with than physical – but when it starts to impact the physical too I freak out!

Sorry you are still toe-crampy. How annoying! And perplexing! I do get that on my middle toe of one foot when I run beyond 10km sometimes. Meh. I blame it on my long toes. Have you got long toes?!

I have tried Headspace – does it have some extra function for running with? I only did the short course in meditation. It is so hard! I am trying to build in some yoga relaxation at night before sleep, which does help a bit. (What would help a lot more is to have some strong leadership at work!)

Thank you for your kind reply, Mitch. xxx

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I think I’ve seen specific Headspace free guided runs on the Nike app, Sadie...

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Yeah my daughter uses the Nike+ app as well. We were talking about headspace and mindfulness only yesterday (as she fleeced me for a new pair of ASICS 😂).

Funny thing is that she also runs around Beckingham Place!!!

Like MD says, try the N+ app first but Sian says they’re good!

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I use Headspace a lot LL! And I would strongly recommend it Sadie-runs! Brilliant for clearing the head while you run!! That’s my go to when my light is on a low eb! And I need to have time away from any more thinking in my bulging mind! 🙂❤️

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I’ve had some motivation issues after a fantastic summer of reaching my running goals and feeling fantastic. I had a week off around the same time as you and found on my return home that my routine had to change due to other family commitments. This meant that I only ran a couple of times over about 3 weeks. I think I lost my confidence a bit and being forced to go back to road running due to the darker mornings I really wasn’t feeling it. I struggled one morning to get to 4K and felt awful. Last Sunday, running a bit later along the river I felt more comfortable and managed 7k. This week I planned new routes along the road and did 4 then 5k. This morning I was quite looking forward to getting out and planned a longish leisurely run in my favourite place - along the river and through the fields. I managed 9k which was fine and next weekend I feel confident about getting back up to 10. I enjoyed being out today, very slow time but thought more about the sensory experience, taking out my ear buds and appreciating the sounds of the early morning and the feel of running against the wind and the rain through the trees. My running journey has been amazing but full of highs and lows. I think it might be the unpredictability that keeps me interested. I usually get easily bored and look for something new! I’ve really enjoyed your posts over the months Sadie, so descriptive and often full of real joy and infectious enthusiasm! Be kind to yourself - the negative feelings will pass I’m sure xxx

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😘 Oh thank you so much, Sarah. Sorry you had to get through a blip too. Hearing about your experience has given me hope though, so thank you for sharing. It’s a bit of a shocker when you have not had a blip for a while, isn’t it? And thank you for your kind words. I am normally cheery and enthusiastic, so the lows do hit hard. xxx

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Loads of great advice above from people much wiser than me, but just wanted to send over some extra hugs. Even without added work stress, I think the rapidly darker evenings make such a difference at this time of year. Be kind to yourself. xx❤️❤️

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Extra hugs always appreciated. 😘 Thank you my lovely. I was worried about moaning on, but it has been the best therapy, and so helpful to get such kind, non-judgemental advice. xxx

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Oh poo balls SR, doesn't sound like much fun, am sorry you are going through all this :( . It's tough this running lark, full of highs and lows and sometimes difficult to manage. How can something so straight forward be so complicated?? Everyone has already said it all already but hopefully you don't feel alone with it so much now. I think that's it, we can all support each other through the tough times and be there to celebrate the good times and that way, we can keep on running. A problem shared and all that... Work doesn't help though, miserable pigs! I am useless at confrontation and probably because of that get put upon more, so I feel your pain.

Take care of you, that's the most important thing. Make the effort to be kind and nurturing to yourself. Running will wait for you and you won't lose any fitness if you don't run for a week or 2 honest, I know. By then, you'll be desperate to get back out! But it might be good to have a rest.

P.s hope the arse cheek sorts itself out xxx

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Poo balls indeed, FPF. Thanks for your lovely response. The highs are so good, the lows are soooooo, well, low. I need to be more resilient, just so hard sometimes. This forum is so helpful though, and to have the sympathy that comes from a real place of understanding is invaluable...sob! I don’t feel so alone now, you are right. Good to get it out of my head at last, been feeling so blah since Weds; feeling more hopeful now. xxx

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I think your current low is really exacerbated by nasty gits at work though.... which can make such a massive difference to our daily sanity.... seeps into and affects all areas of our life making everything else feel just bluuuurrrrrgh and such chuffing hard work.

It takes practice to be resilient... you need to be kind to you first and foremost. Take care and I hope things improve for you pronto, meanwhile vent all anguish here, we understand! xxx

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It seems to have coincided beautifully - bad week at work with bad week of running. 😞 Hmmm. I do have to find ways to cope, as it’s not going to get any better any time soon. I am saving up to take a two-month sabbatical next year though - so not all bad. Cannot. Wait. And thanks again buddy, you are the best. 😘 xxx

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Hello Sadie-runs, I do hope this week goes well and am so encouraged by all your helpful running buddies with their wise words. I do hope that Oldfloss is right and that your mojo is around the corner.

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Thank you. The advice has been so helpful, and I am feeling more positive that I know what to do now. x

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Aww Sadie I’m sorry you’re feeling a bit weary but I’m sure it won’t last and hopefully you’ll be back on top form again!

I do know exactly what you mean though! I tend to push myself too and feel I must keep going further and faster for absolutely no good reason as I don’t intend running very much further and I don’t enter races!! I used to run 3 times a week and last month I pushed myself to do a 50 mile virtual challenge which was hard going with work etc!! (My job is quite physical!)

Anyway I’ve hardly run this week as I had a tooth out and was advised to avoid running for a couple of days which I’m really quite pleased about as it’s meant I’ve had a good excuse not to go!! I find longer runs take it out of me too and I definitely need a good few days to recover after! I’m going to try shorter runs too as I always feel I must do at least 5K when I go out which is silly!!

Hope you are feeling better soon and things improve for you at work too! Take care! 😀🏃‍♀️xx

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Aw, thank you so much, Sara. 😘 I’m the same - I always feel a bit disappointed if I don’t do at least 5k, and that is just silly! The rules we impose on ourselves, eh? I am going to try and let that all go for a while, and just try and run for The enjoyment without focusing on pace and distance.

Hope you heal well from your tooth extraction - am sure your legs will thank you for the rest and you will come back springier! xxx

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I always think it is quite ironic that although running is good for stress it’s the very time you don’t feel like running. They say that running is all about positive mental attitude and that is not something you have a lot of when you are stressed. Don’t worry I’m absolutely sure you will be back on form when your work situation has calmed down, in the mean time, just take it easy :)

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Thanks so much for replying, OG. I have noticed that I actually get proper physical symptoms when under stress - extreme fatigue (no matter how much I sleep) and even aches and pains. And I think that running through all of that last week has led to loss of mojo and more fatigue. So yes, I definitely need to take it easy, I recognise that now. 😕 xx

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You are right, there is also a whole host of horrible physical symptoms too, perhaps with fatigue right there at the top of the list . . . maybe if you do feel like running just do short distances, but if not don't do it, a week or so break isn't going harm your fitness.

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Hey Sadie!! First of all big hugs!! 🤗 You sound as though you’re in the wilderness and going through the motions. Which I have to say is a huge credit to you and a sign of more resilience than you may realise right now! 🙂

Can I just say that I find that life is usually more mentally and emotionally challenging when I’m simply tired. Tired, but refusing to stop! Tired and pushing through and feeling that I should just press on until things feel better. But I’ve learned over time that giving in is sometimes the best thing I can do. Letting it all go and just taking a step back.

Sadie, it’s simply being human! You have achieved amazing things and there will be more. 😍 Set everything down and rest a while. No pressure, no requirements, no judgements. Just be tired and rest. You deserve that. I’ve always come out the other side sooner than I thought possible and with so much energy and clarity in my thinking. Warning, it can be a bit annoying that it took so long to do it. ⚠️

For now, I’d say just rest. This time will pass and you’ll know exactly what to do! 😉😍❤️

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😘 That is such a good description of exactly how I feel - in the wilderness and going through the motions. I am exhausted. Not from running, but from the mental stress of my job. 😕 Sometimes when I am mildly stressed a run really helps, but this current tough patch is draining me to the point of heavy limbs and heavy heart. It will pass, for sure, but I really resent this interfering with my running. When I feel up to it I may go for a short burst one morning, but keep it short, see if that helps. But you are right, for now I need to lay off pressurising myself, especially when I am getting so much pressure from other areas of my life! Running will always wait for me, right?

Thank you darling Fab for such a thoughtful reply. I really needed to hear the things you said. xxx

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I think you should do whatever you feel like doing and be bold and not do what you don’t want to!! 😉 One thing for sure Sadie is “you can run”!! 😍

Just remember that you deserve to be happy, you deserve to be excited about life and although it seems challenging right now, don’t allow anyone to take that away from you. They’ve had their time, now take it back!! And when you next go out there to run, run feeling that freedom to be wonderful you! ❤️

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Thank you lovely lady. I am crying now (but in a good way!) Pressure off; snooze button on. x

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😉🤗 You’re gonna be just fine!! ❤️

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Hug 🤗 xxx

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Hi Sadie, I wrote a reply yesterday but it got swallowed up in cyberspace when I posted it! How are you feeling today? I'm sure you know what a great runner you are and that you have the support of this lovely running community.

I wanted to add that I get that mental fatigue too from my job and totally understand that wilderness feeling. I would recommend you trying mindfulness/meditation. It is weird at first & can feel like it's not 'working' but if you persevere I think it will help.

I started it about 2.5 years ago in somewhat of an emotional crisis (my mum had dementia for 6 yrs before she died & the last 3 in a care home 130 miles away were tough) by doing an online course. I can honestly say that it has helped me in every aspect of my life - dealing with job stress & difficult people to believing in myself running.

I have tried lots of apps but have settled on using a super free app called Insight Timer. It has courses for all levels, hundreds of meditations, inspiring talks & relaxing music. The sleep & sleep quality ones are brilliant! I usually listen to one as I'm stretching in the morning or before a run & have been known to shut the door to my room at work for a 1-2 min breathe & calm down before continuing the day!!

Hope you don't think I'm being preachy - I just identified with the stresses you had written about and thought I'd share what has worked for me. I hope you find a way forward and look forward to hearing about your future runs. Big hug. X

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Oh thank you so much, Slinky, this is a lovely reply. I am feeling a bit better about things today, despite a truly awful day at work yesterday. I can cope really well with a heavy workload, but some difficult personalities at work (upper management) are making things pretty unbearable. The fact that it was draining me and affecting my running really got me down. 😕 But, I had a lovely run this morning - on the suggestion of a friend on this forum, I ran using the Nike+ Mindspace app. It wasn’t revolutionary, but it allowed me to run without focus on distance or pace, and that was liberating. I felt energised after rather than fatigued.

Thank you so much for the meditation app recommendation - I shall download it immediately and give it a go. Things at work are not likely to change soon, so I do need to find ways to cope. I didn’t find you preachy at all. You are so helpful, thank you so much for taking the time to reply (twice!) xxx

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Glad to hear you had a good run - I will check out the Nike app, sounds good. You've hit the nail on the head - there are so many things in life which we cannot change, it is how we view them & deal with them which is important.

I'm off for a run to help my sanity whilst looking after my dad post surgery - let's just say he's not the easiest patient! X

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😘 Wishing your dad a good, speedy recovery. And have a lovely run. Look after yourself as well as your dad. xxx

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Sadie, i've only just seen this, but you are describing what I went through last month. i jut wonder if our bodies sometimes need to catch up with themselves after a lot of activity. I'm ok again now, but I was almost in despair about my lack of energy and enthusiasm. i was going out the door intending to run 6+k and doing 1.5k instead, and all downhill, just no energy and felt off.

Right, now to read your follow up post xxx

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I remember your despair, Flick. :-( You feeling okay now? What did you do to get through it? Did it just pass naturally? I think I have a beautiful combo of mental fatigue (due to work strain), with trying to keep pushing myself through long or hard runs – which require some mental stamina (at a time when I have zero mental stamina). Pffft. Running this morning with no pressure was just the medicine I needed. xxx

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I have mental pressure too. The fatigue lifted of its own accord. Such a relief. Xxx

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I've just gotta say: I've learned a lot from this thread! I've been feeling kind of the same lately, I managed a pb of 6k a couple of weeks ago, but then because of feeling grizzly and generally under the weather last week, only did one run of 5k, which I didn't run all the way through! Pace was all over the place, (in my defense it was a colour run on a route I've never done before) and I strained my right hamstring which meant I couldn't run yesterday. I've generally felt the same as you Sadie, down in the dumps, lethargic, generally crappy. But you guys have cheered me up and made me look forward to my run later this morning! So thank you. 🤗

And Sadie: your not an ever improving machine. Stop expecting your body and mind to act like one. Go do something silly for no reason. Sing a song, paint a picture, pick some conkers or something you love doing. Bake a cake in a rude shape, watch starwars and play drinking games to it! Just do something... Daft. Stop thinking. Feel. Breathe.

You'll be fine. You've got this.

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Sorry to hear you have been feeling the same, Jundal. But so happy that you also benefitted from the responses! Some great advice on here, and so much lovely, much needed support. I have been running a year now, and still have lots to learn. Running is a funny old game, with so much at work, both body and mind. I just discovered that when I am mentally exhausted I cannot go chasing PBs, and have to get back to running for the joy until I feel resilient again.

I do hope your hamstring injury heals soon. I pulled a hamstring at the start of the year, and you do have to take care of strains and rest up.

I ran this morning with no pace or distance in mind, and it was back to being enjoyable again. I am going to go easy on myself for a while, and see where that takes my running legs.

Take care,

Sadie xx

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I just came back from a run and feel much better about it. I too stopped chasing the distance on, stopped pushing, picked a new route and just went with it. I'll admit, I did turn around at the top of one hill and look down wondering how I'd managed it, but twas a good run, in all. Glad you enjoyed yours Sadie. 🤗

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I've really dropped the ball on this one Sadie, so sorry :( We've talked since then, so it's all good, but sorry I wasn't there when you needed me. We really should organise ourselves better so that we don't both through a rough patch at the same time!!!

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Oh not at all, Neil, don’t worry about it! x

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Oh and P.S. how are you doing now? Update needed! x

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Haha it’s ok, on it. I’ll post shortly :)

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