Tuesday, May 1, 2007

How to Beat the Post-Ironman Blues

You planned your whole life around the event--maybe even for an entire year. Then it's all over in a single day. It's easy to feel lost and uncertain after the post-IM endorphins run their course. What's your purpose now? What are you doing? WHAT DO YOU DO WITH ALL THIS FREE TIME!?

Here are some suggestions, in absolutely no order of importance:

  1. Plan a wedding. If it is yours, you won't even have a second to think about what you're doing with your time. Your new purpose: to be an Ironman Newlywed. And it's going to happen in style. Of course, you can always offer to help plan a friend's wedding--complete with bike-chain sculptures and FRS cocktails.

  2. Try a sport you've never done before. Surfing? Mountain biking? Rollerblading? The thought of getting back on your road bike a week after IM could make your mind (or other places) go numb, so forget about "training" and just try something new.

  3. Go to the gym and do some random machine (no treadmill!) like the elliptical or those silly walking dual treadmill things so you can show off all of your finisher gear to the gym rats. Wear your new jersey, hat, socks, shorts, and bring your IM waterbottle. You are so cool right now.

  4. Invent a new sports food. In those weeks after your Ironman, the thought of eating another sports drink, bar, or gel will make your stomach turn. If you're TriDiva, the thought of eating massive amounts of anything chocolate or related to chocolate will make you salivate and jump for joy. Heck, you could even bake a chocolate cake and pass it off as the new super-fuel of 2007. You just finished an Ironman. Nobody is allowed to question your post-race re-fueling methods.

  5. Sign up for another Ironman. Hey, if you know you're going to do one next year, you can continue to call whatever you're doing something related to your future Ironman. You are not being a fat, chocolate-eating slob right now, you are in recovery. When you go to the gym to show off your gear, you're not becoming a gym dork, you are "cross training" or "base-building".

You can beat the post-Ironman blues. Remember, it's a common affliction, and although TriDiva is not familiar with any PIB support groups, your triathlon buddies and family are here to help you through it, just like they were there for you all through your training. And all through race day...maybe you should bake them a chocolate cake...

Happy Recovery!

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