Last Thursday I missed my run because I was coming down with a cold. It has only gotten worse since then. I tried to do my scheduled five-mile run on Sunday, but it didn't go well at all. I was winded almost immediately and had trouble breathing throughout. I took a couple of walk breaks and only completed three miles. At that point I decided not to push it too far and just walked one last mile to get home.
It was only after I got home that I did a bit of internet research and discovered the "neck rule," which basically states that if your symptoms of illness are all above the neck (nasal congestion, sneezing, runny nose, headache) it's safe to exercise, but if your symptoms are below the neck, it's probably better to rest. Most of my symptoms were above the neck, but I did have some chest congestion which worsened after my run.
Under ordinary circumstances, none of this would be any big deal, but with my first 10K coming up this Sunday, I'm taking it more seriously. I understand I'll need to adjust my expectations for the race, and that's fine. I was only ever attempting it just to finish in the first place. But I do want to be well enough to at least do that, so I'm taking it easy for a few days until I can breathe more easily. I skipped my swim today and have already decided to skip my run in the morning. I don't know yet about Wednesday's swim, and I'm hoping to be able to do a short, easy run on Thursday. I'm also trying to get a little more sleep than usual.
I'd be lying if I said I'm not disappointed at this turn of events. The timing stinks. I really felt like I was on a roll after my successful five-mile run a week ago, and I thought I had a good chance of being able to run most of the 10K, with only a few short walk breaks. But the big picture is what is most important to me. I know I'll get back into the swing of things once I'm well, and I'll continue to make progress in the future. So I'm trying to stay positive and just focus on getting better so I can enjoy my experience on Sunday no matter what happens!
A side note: I finally have my photos from the Semper Fi 5K, and I will post them later this week!