Friday, January 6, 2012

Taper Thoughts Part I

Taper madness hasn't yet set in.

I'm still running almost every day, though not quite as long and not quite as fast. And there has been plenty to do at work and at my house over the last few days, like taking down the Christmas decorations. Usually this makes me really sad, but with the Houston Marathon coming up it's hard for me to feel down.

Here is one big thing I'm concentrating on as the taper goes forward:

*Avoiding getting sick.*

Last cycle I improbably caught a cold the week before the Top of Utah Marathon (who gets a cold in early September? my kids and myself, apparently). It was mostly gone by the time the race rolled around, and I don't think it was a major factor in how I performed. But it was a stressor while I was dealing with it, and it interfered with my sleep. So I really don't want this to happen again. Here are the steps I'm taking:

1) I'm not taking my kids to indoor playgrounds, malls or even playdates this week. They still could pick up a virus at school and bring it home--I can't do anything about that. But I can keep them (and therefore myself) away from unnecessary exposure. I am normally NOT a germophobe at all. But this week? I've been tempted to put all of us in surgical masks. :^)

2) Caroline recommended probiotics. I eat a lot of yogurt, so I get these anyway. But I've heard this advice from other quarters and I know Caroline eats a very healthy diet. So earlier this week I picked up some Jarro-dophilus powder and I've been taking it once or twice a day with food.


3) I'm drinking as much vegetable juice as I can. I always have V8 low-sodium juice in the morning, but I don't think I normally eat enough vegetables. Well, for this two-week period I've been having a glass of V8 in the afternoon, too, and I've been buying and downing juice combos that include greens as well. In addition, I'm taking my usual women's multi-vitamin and two Omega 3 capsules every morning.

4) I've been really trying to go to bed early and sleeping in just a touch when I can. There's been only one night in the past week where I got interested in reading something and stayed up past 11. Most nights the light has been out by 10 and last night it was out by 9:30. I will try to improve that to 9 p.m. at least once this week before I leave.

5) I've been more obsessed with hand-washing than I've ever been (with the exception of when Will and Ruthie were tiny infants fresh out of the NICU). My hands are dry, but they are CLEAN.

That, I think, is all I can do! I'm worried about the plane ride, but that, like preschool, isn't something I have any control over beyond hand-washing. Fingers crossed that my strategies work.

Thanks so much to all of you for your advice about the Trials! I'm going to try to hit some of the media roundtables with the athletes on Friday so I can get some of your awesome questions out there. I was bummed to miss a conference call held yesterday with Meb, but I had to tour a school we're interested in for kindergarten next year (yeah, I washed my hands when that was over!).


  1. Fingers crossed for a health next couple of weeks -- sounds like you are being smart about what you can control.

  2. I am getting so excited for you!

    My son starts kindergarten in the fall and I am so excited for him. he will get to do a practise day this spring.

    Enjoy the taper!

  3. So my daughter comes home the day before NYE and is sick and spends the night with me in my bed. Then she spends the next two nights here but thankfully stays in her bed. I washed the sheets each day she was here and Lysol'd the house to death - everyone was gagging on Lysol fumes all day. Then Brendan got what Abbey had and was home from school the first day back on Tuesday. I Lysol'd the couch to death as it's where he spent the whole day on Tuesday. Now the kids' dad is super sick and again, washed everything and Lysol'd everything. I just KNOW I'm going to get the stomach bug they all had the second I step on my plan to Carlsbad. Which really, would be a great thing as it'd give me the excuse I need as to why I had such a sucky race :). Wouldn't it be nice if we can stay in a bubble all week before race day? Don't forget to pack wipes with you to Houston and wipe off all those germy hotel elevator you know where those fingers have been when they then go and touch those buttons?

    Happy-ness here in Centennial to hear that you're feeling good. Was going to text ya today to see how you were, but now I know :). Keep it up, girl, you're doing everything perfectly!

  4. So I have lots and lots of catching up to do on all that is going on with you! I really hope you stay well before the marathon. It is so hard with little kids. I feel like we always either just had something, have something, getting something, or recovering from something. I will send healthy thought your way! Now I have to go read about your Olympic Trials media pass!

  5. Yes, stay healthy! It's so close! Sleeping a lot is a great way to boost your immunity... and I'm glad you're not feeling taper madness. :)

  6. you are doing everything right
    I do all that you do all flu season long
    my hands are also really really dry!

    thanks for mentioning me..:)
    yes wipes and hand sanatizer for the plance and bring your own food no eating plane food just in case!

    School germs are the #1 enemy that is for sure

  7. I think the good turn in the weather will make a big difference - stay out of the gym no matter what!!! I'll block the evil-doer germs on the plane (got to believe I've been through the worst of the germs between my kids and work).

  8. Probiotics rock!!! Sending you healthy vibes for sure. Have fun with all of the Houston madness :)

  9. I work in a hospital and it is all about the hand washing! Remember to sing Happy Birthday for proper duration.

  10. Avoid getting sick is the greatest challenge. Other 2 tips, if I can, until the big day take vitamin C and drink bilberry juice.

  11. I'm with Sarah - washing the hands is important. If you don't like Happy Birthday - sing the ABC's. I thought of you when I was running in Houston over the holidays. ;)

  12. When you get on the plane, use hand sanitizer on the seat armrests and where you will touch. I do this when I fly with my kiddo and we never get sick from the flight! Good luck :)