Taper tantrums hit

So I’ve been raving about how much I looove my taper, and how my body needs the rest, and

Dear Teaism salty oat cookies: Why are you so delicious?

Dear Teaism salty oat cookies: I love you. I'd just rather wait til after the marathon to indulge in your awesomeness.

how I was silly to get all taper-crazy in the past. I even wrote a post yesterday called How to avoid Marine Corps Marathon taper tantrums.

I kind of jinxed myself, and yesterday, I found myself in the midst of a full-fledged taper tantrum.

What I did well: I stuck to my training schedule, running only 30 easy minutes, which meant I had to skip out on my group run barely halfway into last night’s route. I think I’ll skip my group run altogether and run on my own on tomorrow, to avoid temptation to push the pace and/or run longer than I mean to. Which, in case you’re wondering, is 20 minutes easy, with a few pickups thrown in, which is my last workout of any sort before the marathon. Gah!

What I didn’t do so well: I ended up walking around downtown DC for a good 45 minutes during the day from various Metro stations to various lunch and interview destinations. I know a little walking doesn’t cancel out my restraint on the run, and probably doesn’t matter in the big scheme of the taper, but having to think about whether I should be walking so much just annoyed me. I’m sick of thinking about how much I should or shouldn’t work out, what I should and shouldn’t eat, how much I should be sleeping (the late Yankees game last night didn’t help with the last item on the list).

Speaking of what I should and shoudn’t be eating, one of my stops in downtown DC was Teaism, a gorgeous teahouse/restaurant I’m writing a profile of for Specialty Coffee Retailer magazine. I had a cup of Teaism’s best-selling chai, made the traditional way: by boiling spices and black tea, then adding just enough milk and sugar to reach the perfect balance of creamy, spicy and sweet. Awesome and calming — just what I needed! The store’s other best-seller: the salty oat cookie, which turns out to be somewhat of a DC institution. The big, salty, chewy, dense hunk of delicious wasn’t in my plan for the day. But I ended up buying a six-pack of the cookies, and called my husband to tell him was the lucky recipient of six cookies, minus a bite or two I’d taste for research purposes.

I actually did need to taste the cookies to accurately describe them in the story. What I definitely didn’t need to do: down two of the addictive little monsters after my 30-minute easy run failed to wipe away the funk from a stressful day, leaving me feeling slightly sick to my stomach and annoyed that I’d broken my pre-race plan of being reeeally careful about what I ate this week.Plus, even though the ingredient list is delightfully wholesome stuff, these babies can’t exactly be low in calories, making me wish I could add a few minutes to today’s workout, not subtract, making me annoyed at the taper all over again.

As if in an act of conscious protest, I stayed up until the end of the late Yankees game last night (please let my legs channel Mariano Rivera’s post-season arm during the race Sunday!), knowing full well I’d wake up at my regular time and miss out on valuable pre-race-week sleep.

But: Today’s a new day, with plenty of opportunities to eat good, light, carby stomach-friendly food. I can ease my restless legs with a bit of time on the stationary bike, during which I’ll be prepping mentally by visualizing miles 15 through 20. And I DO get a massage this afternoon — the taper ain’t all bad!

Wish me luck not losing my mind over the next couple days. And bear with me — I’m messing around with the format of the blog and my home page again, and things may look a bit messy in the meantime. Some of the changes I’ve made already: I’m making the home page the home of my professional Web site, with the blog a side page. And I’m making the blog itself more running-focused, so I’ve “hidden” all the links to my friends’ non-running blogs. To my buddies with blogs: I’m still following your adventures in France, Germany, Elkton, Md., etc.  I’m just not flashing your Web site around for all the world to see (which I’m not sure how you felt about, anyway, now that I think about it).

Any tips for taper tantrums? If so, post them here!


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5 responses to “Taper tantrums hit

  1. Ya know, it seems to me that any healthy, active person is going to throw a little taper tantrum of some point when they are forced to sit tight and not do much at all. I do “injury tantrums” very well, “illness tantrums” are a close second, and any time I can’t expend the energy I have, I get pissy. So, post away. You’re going to be such a bundle of pent-up energy when you finally run, you’re going to be amazing.

  2. Kim

    I think you are doing very well!

    I am having a rough time this week not running. I ran a half on Sunday, then off Monday and ran 3 miles on Tuesday (all while sick with a cold/cough) and took today off to “recover”. I am itching to run. I hope that I feel like I can run in the morning tomorrow. This is killing me! LOL! If tapering before the half wasn’t bad enough!

  3. trialsoftraining

    Now I want one of those cookies! I’ve been to Teaism and didn’t have one – agh!

    Your taper-updates are very entertaining 🙂 and so honest. you are ALMOST THERE, Amy. just a few more days to hang loose and then it’s ALL about those 26.2!! You’ll be fiiiiine

  4. Pingback: Marine Corps Marathon race-day logistics replace taper madness « Amy Reinink

  5. hang in there, only a couple days to go! i personally wouldn’t worry about those cookies – at least you stopped at 2 (unlike i would do), and just make sure you are get a good balance friday and saturday.

    cutting back on mileage always seems so weird. remind yourself that you’ll make up for it on sunday!

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