Have you ever experienced PRSD?

PRSD stands for Post-Race Sublimity Deterioration… and I just invented it.

You set a unique goal, and train for months. Your goal could be a new or uncommonly-long distance, or maybe you want to focus on setting a PR (personal record) in a familiar distance. You run the race, and proudly bask in the sublime glory of completing your goal! Way to go, you!

But how long does your outward exuberance last?

PRSD didn’t become apparent to me until RVRR superstar Mike Dixon broke the mold. Dixon finished his first 100 mile race, and promptly got in an RV to travel across the southwest with friends. (More on that race later.)

Crazy, right?

Well… let’s think about that. What are your usual options after a big race?

  • Go back to work.
  • Go home and hang out on PTO for a day or two.

The problem with these two options is that they’re maddeningly banal. You’ve just accomplished something extraordinary, yet you’re jumping (well, hobbling) back into ordinary life. That post-race high you’ve got is declining. Quickly.

Your TPS reports can wait! You know the office chatter will only be who won America’s Next Top Bachelor in Tiaras! (err…) And so what if there’s a sweet 10 for $10 sale on Chobani yogurt at Stop & Shop? None of it matters right now- you just achieved something exceptional! The mundane is irrelevant, yet that’s what we normally get back to after a major race. I can’t say I’d be thrilled to be cooped up in an RV, incapable of most mobility while my friends hike Yosemite, but at least I would get some incredible views and fresh mountain air!

What a view!

I want to go back to So. Lake Tahoe after my next big race!

Finances and PTO approval permitting, my plan is to follow Dixon’s lead and spend at least a day or two somewhere out of the ordinary after a marathon or other remarkable race. I’d like to avoid PRSD in any way possible, even if that means something as simple as further exploring the city I just ran through (slowly).

Fight PRSD! You earned that glory!


8 thoughts on “PRSD

  1. See, that’s why events like the Kauai (Hawaii) Marathon exist (it’s not too late, people: Sept. 2, 2012, 6 AM start time! Best men’s time: 2:30:52; best women’s time: 3:08:29). You run the marathon, and before the finish sinks in you look around and notice that possibly you’ve died and gone to heaven. No PRSD in Hawaii, I’m betting!

  2. I hear that, after I finished Boston in 2010, I didn’t want to walk away from the finish line. Every step further away felt like the glory was escaping me faster than I might run to catch it. But you hold it in your heart, and that’s the place from where it will never fade. Now and then I think about it during the middle of a long run. After a great long race, I usually walk a little bit slower coming through the chute than I need to, kind of like the home run trot. 🙂

  3. Nice post Lianne! Part of me wished that I hadn’t burnt myself out in one day but after I had let go and accepted that I would just need to take a break… it got easier. You are forced to learn to embrace the downtime. It’s important for the body and the mind (or at least I keep trying to tell myself this). I need a support group!

  4. Good stuff here Lianne; nice blogging. This if my first time tuning in to your blog – which I only just discovered tonight. Your PRSD theme is enjoyable, keep it up. I don’t remember ever seeing a link to your blog in any of the RVRR groups, by the way. Nice.

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