The Hay is in the Barn

I can’t believe that marathon week is almost here!! In one week, Christina and I will be meeting friends and family and preparing for our race.  It’s so hard to believe after all these months!

It’s also hard to mentally imagine because I’ve been sick with the flu this week.  It really came on all of a sudden.  I ran Monday night with my friend Christy, and had a great 4 miler.  During the day Monday I had a little bit of a tickle in my throat, but otherwise, I felt fine.  After I ran, showered, and ate….I was sitting on the couch and my tummy felt funny, and my head started hurting.  I just went to bed to sleep it off.  I woke up Tuesday morning with the full blown flu.  I initially actually just thought it was a stomach bug, but quickly realized it may be something else.  I went to the dr Tuesday morning because I needed a note….I was actually scheduled for Jury Duty Tuesday!  The Dr took one look at me and told me it was the flu.  I got Tamiflu and a Zpack from him, and have been sitting at home ever since.

Tuesday was rough because I couldn’t really keep food down, so I felt very weak.  It is so crazy how you can feel so strong and then within less than a day barely be able to walk.  It’s a really humbling reminder at how fragile our bodies really are!

Since then, I’ve (thankfully) been able to keep food down, but still have a high fever, cough, congestion.  I’ve gotten a lot of messages and phone calls from my friends which has helped me for sure.  I have to admit that I had a little bit of a freak out this morning though when I woke up STILL sick and Googled “running after the flu”.  Spoiler: runner’s world says that it’s really hard for a couple weeks after.

I mean, the taper crazies are a real thing.  Now imagine being stuck at home, alone, for 4 days straight sick as a dog during your taper.  Now you’re in my state of mind. It’s hard to think that there is a good chance that I’m not going to be 100% on race day after months and months of training.  There’s a chance I will be, too (I mean, it’s still eight days away!) but you know…

I’ve gotten some great advice from my runner friends.  Ariana (a friend from college who is also a big runner) sent me the sweetest email on my first day of being sick, totally unprompted, that totally made me cry.  She told me that she knew I was probably feeling like crap and getting really worried about the marathon, but she knew I would rock my marathon.  She collected stories from her running group up in Columbus, Ohio and sent them to me.  Here’s an excerpt from her email:

“I woke up the morning of Toledo sounding like an 88 year old smoker…deep cough ended up being sinus infection & some respiratory infection, just kept my breathing in check & shallow for 26.2 & Hilary pumped me full of some allergy medicine. Bad chills the night before…basically I expected the worst but it came together for a 3:33:something. I just had to put it out of my head as soon as I started running. She’s got this, the hay is in the barn.” -Katie, 2x BQ (running it this year)

“The week leading up to Columbus (my 1st full) I contracted strep and was bedridden that Sunday til Friday. I didn’t run at all and was sleeping 15 hours a day. I almost pulled the plug on Wednesday evening. She’s done the training and the hay is in the barn. Marathons have a funny way of mentally defeating us the weeks leading up but if she gets adequate sleep, stays hydrated and eats well she will do great!”  -Cory, Finished Columbus in 3:49:16

“I ate a burger at the Circleville Pumpkin Show and it either gave me food poisoning or didn’t sit right in my stomach. I was up the entire night throwing up the night before Columbus. I was really worried about being dehydrated. I went out focused on just finishing and surprised myself with a BQ.” -Nicole, 1x BQ, also ran the Chicago Marathon with a double ear infection (not recommended.)

“I did something to tweak my back about 2 weeks before Toledo last year and didn’t run pretty much until the day of the marathon. I was nervous out of my mind because of it, but it didn’t end up being a big deal at all – I really don’t think I lost any fitness whatsoever. Still PR’ed with a 3:38 something and kept up with Katie and Chirdon until the hellacious winds and sandstorm of Toledo at mile 22. The “hay is in the barn” – the taper doesn’t have much contribution to training outside of rest and recovery anyway!” -Megan, currently training for Boston


hay is in teh barn

Ariana told me that “The hay is in the barn” is a big saying in their running group and I totally love that.  I truly don’t have a time goal for this race, so I don’t have to worry about not hitting a time goal.  Our goals were to finish, feel strong, and have fun.  I can figure out how to do all of those, but first, I need to get better! I have done my training, and that training will get me to the finish line, one way or another.  In the meantime, I’m working on final preparations for the race to try to get myself mentally prepared.  Today, I’m working on my packing list for DC as well as my race-day playlist. Christina and I are also working on organizing all our spectators for the race.  We have a great support system who will be joining us, and I am so grateful for that! I just can’t believe that in 8 days, we’ll be marathoners!
Tell me: have you ever gotten sick before a big race? What’s your favorite motivating song right now?


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  1. You know this already but I believe in you and your strength. This race is going to be amazing. Hard. But amazing. I believe we can do it. Also. You rock. Hugs! -C

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