How much is too much (we need your help on this) + I hairsprayed my body.

(Shorts, shirt ((inside out ha)), shoes and socks)

8.64 miles @ 9:02 pace for my Tuesday morning.

It made my day to see blossoms!

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I’ve been using this Aquaphor spray every day after my shower until yesterday…  I picked up my hairspray instead without realizing it and sprayed my entire body with it.  It did not feel good.  I will now pay a lot more attention to what bottle I pick up.

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Yesterday involved a lot of Trader Joe’s items.

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I love adding this to my egg burritos.

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Pasta + marinated mozzarella balls + bruschetta = heaven.

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So good.

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The highlight of their day was a birthday party!

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Time to try these today.

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Annie brought this question up last week, and I have been thinking about this a lot… How do we know how much fatigue is good for our training and how much is simply too much?

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I think I used to be a bit better at this because I was in marathon training more often and had a better idea of what my body could handle, but this Boston buildup is feeling like an experiment again with ‘fatigue.’  I do have random thoughts on this topic and I would love to hear what you have found in the comments.

*Fatigue is part of the game when training for a marathon (unless you like to pull an Andrew and max out at a ten-miler before running a marathon;).  I like to remind myself that it is just part of what I signed up for, but I will pull back if it affects my everyday life too much.  If I can’t keep up with my main priorities, the running is too much. Being a bit more tired than usual is fine for me until it cuts into my family life.

*This is one of the many reasons why having a coach is the best.  You can tell them what you are feeling, and they can help guide you on whether to keep going with the plan or if you need to back off because the fatigue is too much.

*Make sure you are taking your down weeks EXTRA seriously.  Many plans/coaches have a cut-back week every 2-4 weeks, and during those weeks, I make sure to cut back even if I start to feel better and want to sneak in a few extra miles.  Those cutback weeks are a necessary part of the training!  The same goes for your rest days, when I am in marathon training, I pretty much sit or lay for the bulk of my rest day.

*Don’t forget how much life stress can play into the fatigue you feel, and sometimes the two don’t go together.  I pulled out of CIM training in 2013 because my body and brain couldn’t do both the life stress of divorce and the training stress at the same time, and it was a great decision for me at the time.

*Are you feeling like you are getting injured often or constantly feeling almost injured?  I would take that as a sign that the fatigue is too much stress on your body.

*When in marathon training, I don’t feel like I ever go into workouts feeling fresh.  It is part of training for the workouts to build upon each other so that your body will be ready to go the full distance on race day, but you know your body better than anyone… if you are going into these workouts/long runs feeling like you are past the point of normal fatigue, skip it.  I’m pretty sure everyone has missed a key workout or two throughout their training cycles.  For my PR marathon, I missed one of the key speed workouts and our longest long run of the cycle, and I still hit my goal on race day.

*Don’t let your pace scare you.  Sometimes our paces will be getting faster in training, and sometimes they won’t because of the accumulative fatigue that is building.  Don’t let that freak you out, with a proper taper, you will be faster than ever on race day.  If you need, forget your pace altogether and run based on feeling if the fatigue is getting too much. Maybe you need to slow down a bit?  Remember that our body is different each day which means our paces will be too!

*I feel like with the physical fatigue also comes mental fatigue at points during our marathon training!  For that, the biggest key for me is getting on the dirt.  Road running can feel monotonous when my mileage gets too high but throwing in the adventure of a trail run always helps.  For one marathon training cycle, I would do the first half of my long run on the trails and the second half on the roads, which helped with any mental burnout I was experiencing.  You could also switch up your running route, add in new training partners, switch up the time of day you run etc.

*Are you showing signs of overtraining (source for 12 signs)?  These signs would tell me that it is time to cut back!

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Each of us is so different with our training, and what might work for one runner might not for another!  Pay close attention to how you are feeling, and I think if the fatigue is lasting for days and days, it’s time to cut back.  It’s normal to feel tired after hard efforts, but if you are experiencing the above symptoms on the overtraining list and it is causing problems in your everyday life, be confident and take a step back!  Training isn’t easy, and it definitely can make us tired but I think it is better to show up to the starting line feeling a little undertrained vs. overtrained!


How do you know the difference between good fatigue and bad fatigue with your training?

Ever dealt with overtraining?

Tell me something ridiculous you have done recently because your brain was turned off.

Favorite TJ’s items lately? 

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I just dropped marathon training (for an April race) about three weeks ago. I’ll run the half instead. (I was going for my first BQ.) I could check off pretty much everything on that list of signs of overtraining… When I made the decision I immediately felt a weight lifted off of me. If it’s not fun anymore (within the normal ups and downs) then what’s the point!!?? All the training and work that I put into this cycle will carry with me to this half and beyond. My longest run in this cycle at this point was 18 miles and it’s not wasted time at all – it will absolutely build another layer of fitness for me and I’m not disappointed at all.


Hey Carly! You absolutely made the right decision and I am SO excited to see what you do in the half! You are so right, the training keeps carrying over and that is something I really love about running. Let me know how the race goes, so excited for you. Have a great day!


Ha ha! Inside out shirt :)
Feeling tired is so universal, right? I have a low-tech and a high-tech “test” about fatigue. When I’m feeling really tired, my posture and body language show it; if I look/feel like I’m slumping through the day and can’t really perk up, I know I’m truly fatigued. I also use the data from my Garmin Instinct; if my “body battery” is consistently low and my average resting heart rate higher than normal, I take those as signs that I’m due for more rest.
I overtrained and under-recovered last summer, and it turned out that I wasn’t feeling muscle soreness in my shoulders, it’s tendinopathy. Spoiler: tendons take a long time to heal, and they’re still painful, which means I can’t do any upper body training at all.
TJs buffalo cheddar is amazing!!! It’s cheddar cheese spiced with buffalo seasoning (like wing sauce flavor).


As I read your comment my posture was terrible… what a great way to tell! Thank you for that reminder, I’m going to get in bed extra early tonight. Great tips on how to tell if we are fatigued, thank you. I am so sorry about your tendinopathy… that sounds so hard and I hope you are able to do upper body training again soon. Next time I go to TJ’s I am sprinting to that buffalo cheddar, that sounds heavenly. Have a great day, Corey!


First of all, I love all the stickers on Skye’s face!
Oh I have definitely overtrained and suffered because of it. I overtrained for a marathon a few years ago, and it showed on race day. I felt tired from the start, my legs felt heavy, and I couldn’t get my mind flipped to anything positive. I actually ended up run/walking most of the second half, then was very sore for a week. I often don’t take my easy run days easy enough, which is so important! I agree with the fact that if it’s no longer fun, then what’s the point? If I start to dread about going out for a run or feel like I am forcing myself, I know I need to take a break or step back a bit.
Such a great topic to discuss every so often.
I need to go to Trader Joe’s. I love the blueberry goat cheese on crackers. It such a yummy little treat for me.
I’m still working on my hip flexor, which is kind of a bummer. It’s a tricky little thing for sure!
Have a good day Janae ?


Haha she does it every time we go to TJ’s. Thank you for sharing your overtraining race experience, those 26.2 miles must have felt like they went on forever. Such great tips, thank you so much. Ummm how have I lived without the blueberry goat cheese on crackers, that is calling my name. I was really hoping your hip flexor would be better by now. I am so sorry! Thanks Wendy, you too!


I agree, it’s really hard to tell the difference between “normal” tired and too tired. One of the things I didn’t see on your list was nutrition. I know for myself, I can sometimes underestimate what I should be eating to support the hard training. Most nutritionists say that you need more protein on a heavy training regimen, but I would also double check that you’re eating enough of everything.

I think it’s also important to remember that athletes who train hard (much, much harder than me lol) usually have naps to support the extra effort. So there’s probably a sweet spot between training + sleep that people have to navigate individually.


Thank you so much for sharing, Christine! You are so right about this and I hope it is okay if I include your comment on tomorrow’s post. Thanks for helping us all and have a great day.


Good morning, Janae! Skye’s face stickers for the win!
I feel like these last couple of years have upped everyone’s feelings of fatigue in one way or another (thanks, COVID). I can usually tell “bad” fatigue with things like not being able to keep my eyes open at my desk or struggling to stay awake on my commute home which is only a half hour. Usually getting some extra sleep for a couple of nights in a row helps a lot.
Last ridiculous thing I did because my brain was turned off happened on Sunday – I sliced my thumb with a kitchen knife. Not severe enough for stitches, but it’s quite tender and reminds me daily how helpful my left thumb is!
We have no TJs anywhere near us, but every time I see one of your posts about it, I want to take a road trip!!
Happy Hump Day, Janae!


Hahah every time we go there she puts the stickers all over her face, I hope that doesn’t end for a while. I totally agree about the last few years making us more aware! Thank goodness extra sleep is free because it sure does so much for us. I am so sorry about your cut but thank goodness that you didn’t need stitches, I hope it heals up 100% asap. I need to ship you my favorites from TJ’s. Thanks Janine and the same to you!


Thanks for the tips on deciding if it’s good or bad fatigue! Very helpful.

That TJs meal looks so good! Definitely need to try. I haven’t been there in a while, adding to my list!


Yes yes yes and let me know what you think about it! Have a beautiful day, Mariah!


Oh my gosh, I am laughing (nicely) at spraying yourself with hairspray! Does it rinse off easily?

I think bad fatigue is when I feel tired on every run–no matter what the pace. Yes, I have runs that aren’t great and it sometimes takes me 1/2 hour to warm up, etc. But if I have a consistent 3 days of runs where I have no pep and feel drained afterwards, I know I need to cut-back. On that note, how accurate do you think the Garmin is at saying you are “peaking” “overtraining”, etc.? I am fascinated by that feature on the watch (I just got mine a month ago). However, I have no idea if it is accurate at all.

Back in 2012, I was overtraining, but I was also underfueled, high stress, and not sleeping enough. I know some people say there is “no thing as over-training, just under-recovering” I used to disagree with this wholeheartedly, but now to some extent, I believe it is true–especially if you listen to YOUR body. What is overtraining for some is an easy workout for others. But looking at my training. for the past 2 years, I have ran, biked and lifted weights more than I ever have, but I am also eating more, sleeping more, relaxing more and taking more days off if I need them. I make my rest, recovery and nutrition as or more importing than my workouts. I am not saying I am perfect and there are days that I push it too hard, but I know the next day I will need to back off or I face injury.

I have so many things I have done because my brain was turned off. Last week, I was calling a co-worker “Kelsey” and her name is “Cassie” I knew it didn’t sound right, but I couldn’t figure out what it was. I returned my childs permission slip in with the top half (with the field trip information) and kept my signature part at home. I also have the tendency to think I only have 2 kids, when I am overly stressed, I find myself saying “well at least I only have 2 kids to keep track of” or “I have both kids with me” if my husband asks where everyone is.

Have a wonderful Wednesday Janae!


Hahaha I was in a rush so I really did not get it off well haha. That is such a great tip on whether to know if you are overly fatigued or not. SO so true that if every run is feeling terrible/exhausting, there is a problem. I’m not sure about the Garmin feature because it definitely has told me different things than what I am feeling ha. AMEN to what you said about under-recovering. I fully agree with you and I am so happy with where we both are at now. Thank you for sharing your off brain moments, I feel less alone haha. Thanks Becky, you too!


Regarding fatigue…I think it is very important to also note…check with your doctor and have blood work done!! There are a variety of factors (all outside of training) that could have a larger impact on fatigue (such as low iron…thyroid issues, etc).


I cannot thank you enough for this reminder! I’m going to share this in tomorrow’s post if that is okay. Hope your day is a beautiful one, Aimee!


I’m digging through the Endorphin book, and found the bit about overtraining in it, and what it is….and yes I’m taking more cold baths and showers… yeah, not sure if that’s ridiculous or not?….not sure of bad vs good….good is your happy with it, bad is a headache?……


Are you talking about Dopamine Nation? I still can’t get myself to do the cold showers yet but maybe someday ha. Have a great day, Warren!


Thank you for another great post, Janae! I completely agree with what you said about making sure running doesn’t leave energy for what’s most important in life—spending time with family.

And the sunscreen mistake is too funny! I’ve accidentally washed my face with conditioner. It took a couple washes with face wash to get the slimy feeling off!

And I’m curious to read your Maurten review. I’m running Boston, too, and need to get in trials with it, too! Have a great day!


You are so welcome! Yes yes yes, running just can’t take over our main priorities. Thank you for sharing your face washing with conditioner haha… I feel less alone. Kelly, I feel like I need to call you on the phone right now to express to you how much I loved them today. I couldn’t even believe the difference. I didn’t taste them and didn’t feel them in my stomach at all (or that film that normal gels do in my mouth). I felt the energy though. It was shocking! PLEASE try it and let me know what you think. Happy tapering!


Hi Janae! One thing I haven’t seen mentioned here about fatigue is iron! I was having the same issue before where I was so tired I’d literally nap during my lunch break. Runners need more iron than regular people, and women tend to have lower iron. Eating more red meat and iron containing foods didn’t help me much when I was low, I needed to supplement with iron for a few months and now I only supplement during my period. But this needs to be done with doctors supervision so you don’t overdose. I would recommend that every runner who is overly fatigued have their doctor check their iron (ask for ferritin test and the value should be over 40 even though 20 is technically not deficient). It made such a huge difference for me it was night and day so I make sure to tell everyone!


OH MY GOODNESS…. yes yes yes. I can’t thank you enough for bringing this up. Thank you for sharing your experience and what helped you so much and I need to get tested, it would be interesting to know. Have a beautiful day Amy! I am going to share this in tomorrow’s post if that is okay!


List of fatigue symptoms incredibly helpful. Thanks and no TJ’s run lately ?. Hopefully soon


I am so glad but I sure hope you aren’t feeling any of them! Hoping you get to TJ’s soon and have a beautiful day, Karen!


The hairspray- ha! That’s awesome.

We are from Charleston, SC and heading to SLC next week for spring break!! Staying with my cousin who I know lives near Alta Ski area. I have 4 kids aged 3-11, all very adventurous! Any things you think we shouldn’t miss while we’re there?


Oh my goodness! I hope the weather is great and that you all love it here! My favorite food and things to do are in this post and I really hope it helps. You have to let me know what you think of SLC after!


Such an important (and hard!) question. I think it’s also important to think about *when* during the training cycle you’re feeling exhausted or fatigued. It’s very normal to feel worn out during peak training weeks or in the weeks leading up to the taper. But feeling exhausted early in a training cycle or right after a recovery week is a red flag!

This is something I’m still working on. I pushed through feeling very run down during my last training cycle–I felt exhausted from day 1. In retrospect, I would have been better off taking more recovery early on so I’d actually be able to push myself later. Currently enjoying a low mileage off-season to recuperate!

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