Fitness Update: Overdoing It

This week I want to address the question of overdoing it? How does one know if one is overdoing it? And what does it mean to overdo it?

This week I swam 2000 yards, ran 17 miles and biked 120 miles, so it isn’t the total amounts of things I am talking about, but specific events.

The event I was thinking about was 13 of the 17 miles ran.  I was doing a test run of the route for the upcoming half marathon on April 23. It was morning, warmer than I’d been practicing, a very stiff wind, and I was apparently less over-hydrated than normal.

About halfway through the run I started feeling dry in the mouth. Well, not really dry, but so my mouth was sticking to itself and could seal my lips shut. I don’t normally need to drink on my long runs, I’m usually so hydrated, so this was an obvious sign that something was different.

I’d been waiting to find my second breath, but it never came, and when I found myself, about 9 miles in, almost starting to walk for the third time in the run, I finally gave in and started walking.

Of course, this happened when I was on a point the furthest out from the end of the route, where I had left my water bottle and bicycle. So I had to walk all the way to the end.

I had enough energy to make a leisurely ride back home. But later that afternoon I ended up with sudden diarrhea that lasted throughout the afternoon. Since I didn’t have any other symptoms besides tiredness, I am assuming it was a stress-induced incident, from overdoing, and probably not being hydrated.

That shouldn’t be a problem during the race coming up, since they should have some hydration stations, and I will also be more hydrated to begin with.

So, obviously, I could have run more, but the run that I did created a stressed situation. So was it overdoing it, or not? How do we define it?

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