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!).