"I think we've got more to give but I think it's a good thing. In the short term it's not very nice but in the long term it's a very healthy thing."
Britain's Laura Trott was fastest in the sixth and final event of the omnium, covering the 500m time trial in 35.799 seconds, to finish 11th overall behind Canada's Tara Whitten.
A third event this week proved too much for Pendleton as she struggled in the heats and needed two qualifying races even to reach the semi-finals.
Former Great Britain sprinter Craig McLean told 5 live sports extra: "She was stuck on the outside and sometimes you can get away with that but it's a quality field in the semi-finals and she just ran out of steam."
Pendleton, who won the three sprint titles at the World Championships in 2007, battled to victory in the the minor final of the keirin before Meares avoided a crash in the penultimate lap of the gold medal race to win overall.
FINAL MEDAL TABLE
1. Australia 8 gold, 2 silver, 1 bronze
2. France 2 gold, 1 silver, 4 bronze
3. Belarus 2 gold, 1 silver
4. Great Britain 1 gold, 3 silver, 5 bronze
5. United States 1 gold, 2 silver
"I was really disappointed with my performances in the early rounds. I was hesitant and that's the worst mistake you can make in the keirin," Pendleton told BBC Sport.
She said of Meares: "She had a fantastic competition, she's in the form of her life. I don't feel too despondent because I know I'm not in the best form of my life. I know when the training and preparation is right it will come together.
"The goal I'm looking for is an Olympic medal. None of this seems to matter in comparison. That's what I'm, aiming for and that's what I'm dedicating my whole life towards."
Meares, the Olympic 500m time trial champion in 2004, followed team sprint gold with her first world individual sprint title on Saturday.
And Australia coach Gary Sutton believes the victory marked a change in the 27-year-old.
"Anna's a very special athlete. To me she is the package, as Sir Chris Hoy is," he told BBC 5 live sports extra
"Before she lacked a bit of confidence but now she believes in herself and more importantly she believes in the people around her.
"It's one she really wanted to win and I think that's a turning point for her. You could see the emotion. Victoria has always been a step ahead [before]."
Leigh Howard and Cameron Mayer won Australia's other gold of the final day, in the Madison, while Stefan Nimke paced his race perfectly to win the men's 1km time trial in one minute 00.793 seconds to give Germany their only gold medal of the five-day championships.
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