Embracing Exhaustion Sometimes Means Rest

Pretty much how I felt all day. But older. And more achy.

I woke up this morning feeling not just tired, but absolutely and completely 127 million percent exhausted. It sucked. I yawned. I yawned again. And if that weren’t enough, I yawned some more. My duvet felt especially heavy. My pillows were the strongest magnets that ever existed – strong enough to keep me pinned purely on account of the iron in my blood. Opening my eyes pretty much demanded the use of a crowbar.

I really am not a fan of waking up like this. In fact, I rarely ever wake up like this.

Once I managed to get my sorry ass out of bed, I stumbled to the bathroom to splash some icy cold water on my face. I stretched, and then I stretched some more. Normally this is about the time in the morning when I reach down and grab Elliot for an energizing good morning hug. That was not a good idea today. Doing so alerted me to something very quickly – everything ached. My back was stiff. My legs were lead. My everything was tired.

I headed downstairs to pour a hot glass of go-go juice down my gullet, hoping this might wake me up and shake me out of whatever sleepy time funk I was wrapped in. Of course, that required that I make said go-go juice. Which meant that I needed a mug to hold the go-go juice. But I was so un-freaking-believably useless and my brain was running in such super-duper slow motion that I couldn’t make a decision to save my life. That is, I couldn’t pick a mug. Let me repeat: I couldn’t pick a mug. A mug! They’re basically identical save for colour. And I couldn’t choose one for a time period that I would only call ridiculously unhealthy.

Oh lord. I have to go to work.

So there I was. Standing in the kitchen without go-go juice. Achy. Indecisive. Annoyed with myself. I felt old. Older than my 36 decimal something years. I was not amused.

As I pondered what the hell might have happened between when I went to bed and when I got up, I continued to stretch and try to bring some sort of life back into my system. For the life of me I couldn’t figure it out. Perhaps a lack of food, perhaps a lack of sleep, perhaps the month of January just caught up to me. Maybe all of the above. Whatever it was, I did not like it. I did not like it one bit.

It was at that point that I made a very wise decision – perhaps my wisest in a while. I decided that, although my training schedule insisted I run 10+ km this eve, I was going to call in sick from running. I couldn’t actually call in sick to work because 1) I wasn’t actually sick, and 2) I had class to teach. But I could call in sick to running. I try not to use these ‘call in sick to running’ days too often because I don’t want to get into the habit of it. You know, today I call in sick because I feel like a bag of smashed hammers, tomorrow I call in sick because I’d rather have a beer and scratch while watching the boob tube and eating bonbons. It’s a slippery slope.

Point is – I decided to make today an impromptu rest day. And as I said – wisest decision in a while.

Slow moving mammal; thy name is sloth - Dan the sloth.

I think it wasn’t until about 5 this afternoon that I started to feel somewhat myself again. My body didn’t ache. My head was a lot clearer. I had focus. I had determination. Better still, I had energy. It’s amazing what a little rest will do for the body. Of course, a rest day wouldn’t be a rest day if I then went home and ran for 10k. So I stuck to my guns – although I was tempted to do otherwise – and made sure I spent this eve chilling. That included coffee time with Dr. Mark and Dr. Julie, a fancy pants new hair cut, and some very needed snuggling time with Elliot.

Anyway, I’m sure my body is thanking me for taking today off. And I hope it appreciates and enjoys the reprieve. But take note body; while tomorrow is a new day full of the possibility of learning and adventure, it’s also the day we get back to training. And don’t think I’m going to take it easy on you. Tomorrow we get back to embracing exhaustion.

7 Comments Add yours

  1. Beth says:

    Excellent choice to rest, Dr. Dan. Sometimes our bodies just need rest so that the next day they can go out and be even more awesome than before!

    And I can really appreciate the level of exhaustion that results in the inability to choose a mug. Yesterday, after a 3 hour homework session with a classmate, I went into the grocery store because I had absolutely no food in my house and I just wandered around aimlessly because I couldn’t remember what it was I wanted from there. I knew that I wanted something in particular to eat, but had no idea what those things were. So I wandered around for a ridiculously long time, picked up a few things, went home… and then remembered the two things I wanted, neither of which I bought. Le sigh.

    1. dangillis says:

      I hate when I’m that tired. It turns us from our normal awesome selves into zombies of the 3rd degree. I’m actually not sure what a 1st or 2nd degree zombie is, but 3rd degree sounded bad – but not so bad that we couldn’t somehow be unzombified.

      Hmmm, perhaps I’m still tired. Let me check.

      Yup. Yup I am. Sigh.

  2. You have just described every single morning of my life.

    1. dangillis says:

      My mornings aren’t always bound out of bed ready to take on the day, but it’s very rare that I feel as bad as I did yesterday. Thankfully today was much better. I was still tired, but not knackered.

      I think the next time this happens, I’m just going to stay in bed. With a scotch.

  3. Well said; in your own unique style! Thanks for the pingback too. Love your style, just keep fit too. Smiles.

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