There’s a foolish pride in pushing ourselves as far as we think we can go. The thing is, our limits are usually not that far off, so we tend to break long before we’re satisfied with how much effort we’re putting in. (Burnout, anyone?)
And recovery is much harder than preemptive rest, just like pumping a flat tire takes more time than topping up the air when its pressure is slightly lower than it should be.
There’s no shame in catching your breath before you’re out of air. This is the one place where self-sacrifice doesn’t do any good:
Breathless people don’t finish anything well, if at all.
Inhale with a break as often as you need it (trust me, you’ll know when you do). Don’t postpone your rest.