second wind, to get one's

second wind, to get one's

To proceed with renewed vigor after a lapse. The allusion here is to athletes who, after initial breathlessness, warm up and resume their regular breathing. In the early twentieth century this phenomenon was transferred to other kinds of undertaking in which, after an initial flagging of energy, one is able to continue with fresh vigor. Josephine Tey used it in The Franchise Affair (1946): “Perhaps it was the presence of an ally . . . or perhaps she had just got her second wind.”
See also: get, second