After my Labor Day workouts I couldn’t seem to recover. I had a feeling of constant nausea all week and couldn’t get any real food down, yet I didn’t feel that sick? My body ached – but that was nothing new, (not at all!). But, yet I knew something just wasn’t quite right? With each day that passed I got weaker and by Friday I went to the pool and I could NOT finish my swim :-/ (And, that’s not like me?). I was too dizzy to press on and my head was pounding from the water pressure. Not finishing felt like shit.
I went to work and tried to take down my recovery shake despite the nausea. Nothing sounded good for lunch and by 3pm I thought I had a fever! Crap. Was this the beginning of the end?
I went right home and into bed. I basically stayed there until my alarm went off the next morning for my long ride. I knew it was going to be UGLY … but I had to at least try? I arrived with minutes to spare and was wheels down at 6:30am with Frisco Tri Club. And let me tell you… it was ugly indeed. I literally had NOTHING to give. The guys were concerned (in their own sarcastic way!) and kept giving me bailout options but I continued on trailing way, way behind almost getting dropped. Big thanks to my new Tri Club friend “Jason” who stayed back with me.
At each stop light I prayed I could keep going… even though I knew better. By noon I could feel my fever creeping. My stomach still dull with nausea wasn’t handling anything well and soon hydration and fueling came to a halt. I was in the danger zone, I knew it… but couldn’t let go. This was one of my last big weeks of training before taper… So important!! I was angry, tired, frustrated and a little scared too.
The guys left me around mile 50-60 and I continued looping McKinney and eventually finished at the Tribute to complete my century. (Yes, I went 100 miles with a fever and very little hydration…) It was damn near 2:30pm and I had only got down two bottles and half a bonk bar. My lips were chapped and blue and I had the shivers up and down my body. I didn’t want to see anyone, embarrassed that I was breaking down so badly. I just wanted to crawl into bed and be alone. But as I approached the garage Paul was there setting up a bike rack.
“You’re back, how did it go?” He smiles and looks up at me.
I immediately start to cry. He doesn’t walk towards me – he doesn’t say anything for a minute. He just stares. Eventually he makes eye contact and blurts, “You’re just sick! This is the mental part of the training right here. You are stronger. Don’t break now!” I want to just cry harder but somehow hold it together… and reply, “I know. I just hate that I feel like this – and Coach Soria has me running off the bike today too…”
Paul, still keeping his distance says, “Well, decide if you’re gonna run or not – otherwise get in the shower, go!” I look at him, tears starting to fall down my cheeks and reply, “I’ll try… I need my shoes.” I walk away knowing he’s giving me the tough love or I would probably fall apart even more – but a small part of me just wants to let it all go and cave in his arms.
I did run two miles and then went right to the med center. 🙁 They fixed me up for the time being and even though I thought the med center was overreacting a bit, I promised to see my doc that week too for a follow-up. I feel like doctors don’t seem to really understand endurance athletes…? (Although, I completely admit 100 miles with a fever isn’t the smartest decision ever…?)
But to cap it off, on Sunday I did my 18 mile run… I know, I know – “What was I thinking?” Probably the second worst decision ever – and maybe worst run of my life? This was the most challenging run – physically and mentally – I’ve ever faced. I felt “paralyzed” – my body was not moving and I was just shuffling by the end. Soria keeps talking about “IM pace”… Well, I think I found it? If anything, I think I’m prepared for the mental fortitude of Ironman!
After that run I was down for the count… My fever spiked, my body was completely broken down, and I could not eat/drink without gagging.
What had I done?
After consulting with my coach we decided I needed to shut it down for the next 2-3 days- surprised? Well, long story short I was actually out all week – yes, a whole week of IM training LOST! My doc really thought I had mono – which would of ruined me!! So, I am very thankful that all the tests came back favorably. And, thank you to everyone who prayed for me and checked on me while I was so sick! Also, a special thanks to my sweet husband who had to deal with a sick, crabby, difficult wife for a week – I was no picnic…
While I’m on the mend, it sure feels like I’m starting over :-/ I’m more scared and nervous for Louisville than ever. I’m taking one day at a time and praying for strength, endurance and courage to get me to October 11…
Don’t be afraid for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand. Isaiah 41:10