There’s a guideline in running that states if your body needs sleep, it will tell you.
It is something that I never really understood as a new runner. I mean, of course you’d know, right? How could you not know if you were tired and should nap or simply go to bed? Sleep was sort of a luxury too. The demands of a young family mean that sleep is a second choice at times to other activities. I have logged a few sleep deprived years; this nerd is part of that club too.
I would lie awake some mornings and wonder if I was too tired to run. If that comfortable feeling in bed meant that I should stay and wait for sleep to return. I can always switch around a rest day if I need to. Pushing yourself could cause an injury and getting a bit of extra sleep might be what I needed.
Then, there are the nights that disappear because sleep demanded its time and you wake up only to move to bed and resume your activity. I believe that those are the nights that body has said, you need it and it’s good for you. I don’t have many, thankfully, as it prevents much from happening. But when I do, I take it in stride, and tell myself that my body knew better and sleep was better than the book I had planned to read.
Runner is a label I’m starting to feel applies to me, especially when talking with someone who is starting out. I have about four years to my credit. As with many things, practice makes perfect. I’m still slow and probably always will be. I’m satisfied that I’m out there, competing with myself.
And I follow the guideline that my body will tell me when I need sleep.