Tuesday, April 19, 2011

A New Perspective

I've tried to be really positive about my injury. And yes, I'm actually calling it an injury. I haven't even wanted to do that for reasons I'll discuss later. But when Saturday came and it was officially two weeks since I had ran, and it still hurt, any progress that I had made was gone from my mind. And I just focussed on the pain that remained there. I had a really bad attitude. I didn't want to go to the pool. I didn't want to wait until the day was half over to get my exercising done. (Our pool doesn't open until one on Saturdays. Don't even get me started on that one!) It was raining and I didn't feel like riding my bike in the rain even though I really could have. It was warmish. I really just wanted to run. I talked with my workout buddy, Heather and she thought she might go on a walk and maybe even a short run. I really wanted to do the same but knew that I'd regret it later. So I sulked. It stopped raining and my husband said he'd ride his bike with me. So we did a 7 mile loop and though I had planned to go back out, I was done. I sulked some more. There were even a few tears.
I texted with a good friend (you know who you are) and had her talk me out of running on my hurt foot. I promised her and myself that I would not run until I have no pain plus one day. Then I went and saw a movie with my daughter that changed my whole day. And there were more tears. Soul Surfer is a true story about a 16 year old girl who lives in Hawaii. She was born to surf. It was her whole life. She had a fantastic future ahead of her. And then there was a shark attack that took her arm. Her recovery and what she continued to do with her life after the attack is simply inspiring. There's one part in the movie where her religious leader is teaching the youth through an object lesson. She shows them pictures of things magnified and has them try to identify them. She then points out that it's hard to see things clearly when you're too close. Sometimes you need a new perspective. And that's what I came away out of that movie theater with. Some perspective. And it came during my 26 mile bike ride that I did as soon as I got home.
The whole thing that started my freak out session was seeing a countdown until the Ogden Marathon. It said 35 days. If you take into account a good taper period, there's only a few weeks of real training left. And though I've had some really great training runs, I don't feel ready. And I really don't want to run through pain and cause further damage. I've done that before and hope that I've learned my lesson. The thought of NOT running that marathon is devastating to me. For so many reasons. But it all boils down to pride. I have something to prove, if to no one but myself, and not being able to do it seems like a failure, yet again.
But with my new perspective and the big picture, it's not all about the marathon. Simple running is what I love. Yes, I love the challenge of the marathon. I love seeing improvement in myself and my abilities. And I love the life lessons I learn each time I run a marathon. But it's not the only thing I love about running. In fact it's just a tiny portion of why I run. And I get caught up in the little things and they can ruin it for the big picture. I love having my body be in motion. I love the feel of movement against something. It feels like progress. Whether it's the treadmill or a hill or my favorite dirt road. Movement frees my mind and allows me to think clearly. Sometimes it's about nothing at all, which I love. I love that no one is asking me to do something for them. There's no, "mom! I need..." While I LOVE being a mom, I also love my time when I'm out in nature, free for an hour from responsibility. Free to be myself. I love running with friends and letting the miles erase worries of the day. It's therapy. I love running by myself. I feel like an athlete when I run and I've never considered myself an athlete at any other time in my life. And running barefoot has only enhanced that love. I love feeling what's beneath my feet. It's pure joy.
For now, my foot feels better than it ever has. This weekend was a turning point. I'll still be good and wait until there's no pain plus a day. But there is some hope there. If this injury ends up ruining my marathon plans for this year...I will be disappointed. I won't lie. But it won't be the end of the world. I will have time to run in the future. I have years and years. And I'm going to follow my heart and see where it leads.

Push up challenge week 2!
Monday: full body weights, 65 minutes pool running
Wednesday: 16 mile bike ride outside with trailer, full body weights
Thursday: 60 min spin class
Friday: upper body weights, abs
Saturday: 35 mile bike ride

31 comments:

Julie said...

I dislike sulky days SO much. They make me appear so ugly :-( Sorry you had a sugly day (like my combination of the words?)

Mai wants to go see that surfing movie SO BAD. I totally forgot about it and I just posted a shark cake picture this morning and now, thinking about that awesomely brave girl in the movie, I feel really bad for laughing at mermaid eating sharks.

I remember when that arm loss went down. She did an interview on the Today Show and she was just so sweet and brave and totally a role model for daughters everywhere. I can't wait to see this movie now!

SO happy your foot is feeling better today!

chris mcpeake said...

Hopefully you are pain free and still able to get enough training in. good luck

Mamarunsbarefoot said...

Oh boy do I get where you are at this moment! This marathon i gave up was #3. i have had to bow out of 3 marathons due to injury, it is extremely hard and yes my pride has been shattered more times than i care to even count. Somedays I cry as I'm driving, others I feel like I can rise far above this. The whole process frankly sometimes.. sorry but sucks. ((hugs)) rest, heal, pray.. one day at a time.

Penny said...

I hope your foot is better soon. Dont rush it. Sorry you had a bad week. Hopefully this week will be better. Hang in there.

misszippy said...

Injuries are such an emotional roller coaster! You are doing great, though, and behaving maturely, which is so hard to do, I know! Glad you made some progress and hopefully you are close to a return. I'll be thinking of you!

Julia said...

I think I need to see that movie because I REALLY need help getting out of this mindset I am in. I literally do not know what is "real" pain or my imagination any more. Plus I am constantly stuck in the future and how if I can't run the marathon it will be the end of my life.

I wish we lived closer to each other. I would totally work out with you every day! I just feel like I relate to you so much every time you post. Plus I would swim and bike with you and we can talk about how we can't (or in my case...probably shouldn't) be running and how that is okay. Then we could go get ice cream.

It would be amazing. I need to go on a road trip to see you soon. This is the only solution.

I am SO impressed that you still got such quality workouts in last week. It is tough for me to stay motivated when I am not sure if I am working toward anything or not so my workouts have been not great lately. I felt inspired after reading your post though :)

have a good evening!

Sam {fitnessfoodandfaith.blogspot.com} said...

you are AWESOME. love your posts...always.

the movie sounds great, adding it to my list.

Julia said...

Jen: I never wanted you to post on my blog "if I ever run again" eeek. But I understand because my attitude has been that way just about every other day recently.

Also LOVE that quote by Dean's dad. amazing. WHEN we run for real again we can use that quote all the time :)

Rachelle Wardle said...

Jenn this post is amazing. You speak from your heart and I love it. You are just truly inspiring to me. Keep your head up and stay positive and have faith that things happen for a reason.

Great job on the workouts without running. You are just great! Have a good night.

bobbi said...

I was so glad to get to the bottom of this and read that your foot is feeling better. I hope that it continues to feel better! You are in my thoughts - I totally hear you on "running is therapy" and it sounds like you have a good honest take on all of this.

Still crossing crossable parts that you can toe the line in May...

(Just) Trying is for Little Girls said...

Thanks for this post, Jen. I'm inspired to take a step back and appreciate the big picture.

Hope your foot feels better soon.

katie thompson said...

im really feeling this same way. what do you do when you have an injury whether small or big? how do you decide? i really really want to run the marathon and im 98% sure i will be able too. im going to try running for the first time after my leg felt like a guitar string went off in it on friday. cross your fingers that it goes well.
we do need to meet up if both of us show up on may 21. you say what is the best way because this is new to me with the whole marathon thing.

Shelby said...

Just as you said you have to get the bigger picture. Whenever I feel down or sad about something, I think about how thankful I am that I have what I have. I am thankful that I have 2 legs and 2 arms. I am thankful that I am able to walk.

Jennifer said...

Such great perspective! One marathon or injury does not change who you are or all the accomplishments you've had. As with life, running is about the journey, and we can either accept what we're dealt and move forward or we can sulk and wallow. I'm happy to hear you are doing the former :)

Samantha said...

This is a wonderful post! That sounds like an inspiring movie. I really hope that you feel better soon :)

Missy said...

I'm sorry you had a rough day! But you seem like a very strong person and you will make it thru! I have faith and so do you!

Stephanie said...

I'll be thinking about you Jen as you deal with this. I feel very blessed to have run for the past two years relatively injury free. Reading about bloggers with injuries makes me realize that I ought not take it for granted. Positive thoughts your way!

Joanne said...

Injuries come with running. They really put a crimp in our style and sometimes ruin our plans. But maybe there's a positive side. You can strengthen your running by cross training (you're doing that). And.. you are SO right. You have YEARS to run. If you get to the scheduled marathon this year, super! If not, wait 6 mos. and go out strong, feeling 100%.
You'll get there. You know it.

theAlmostRunner said...

Your workouts are so hardcore. I know what you're dealing with, kinda... I have horrible shin splints right now and they're keeping me from running. SUCKS.

One heart and mind said...

My buddy Jen...I'm so with you on this one! You have a great attitude and I want to thank you so much to listening to my mindless dribble all the time. Running is an emotional sport with highs and lows. One of my favorite quotes is "We don't know who we are until we see what we can do" Whether running the next marathon or overcoming an injury it proves to ourselves who we are and what we can do. I think overcoming an injury with a good attitude is just as hard (or harder) than training and running a marathon. Wow that was a long comment. Love ya!

Teamarcia said...

I love your attitude about all of this. And I'm thrilled to hear your foot is feeling better. The meaty 6 weeks of my Boston trainig last year was spent in the pool. It all still came out ok. Praying your marathon will too! Hang in there.

Cory Reese said...

I'm planning on Ogden too (as long as body cooperates).

I saw a story in Runner's World a year or two ago about a book called The Mind Body Prescription. Certainly a little different, but I like it. May be worth checking out???

ashley & sundance said...

You are amazing... seriously. You can turn any sulky, bad, gloomy day around.

I really hope your feet/legs cooperate and we can run Ogden & Utah Valley together! :)

Jogging with Fiction said...

Sulking days are miserable and so hard to snap out of! I hope things get better soon!

Coy Martinez said...

I know how you feel! I was injured for the first time this year too and it's so incredibly difficult to deal with. You'll be back though!! We're runners and we always make it back to where we belong!

Were you planning on running the marathon barefoot?

Anonymous said...

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Janet Oberholtzer said...

Hi found you via Bless with full Hands' site.

The title of your blog caught my eye and it's been fun exploring your site.

Sorry that you are dealing with pain/injury right now. And as hard as it is ... it's wise to listen to your pain ... it's your bodies way of talking to you.

I also was inspired when I saw Soul Surfer recently.

So rest well ... then happy running!!

Jess @ Blonde Ponytail said...

Aw, Jen, I'm thinking of you and praying for you. Like MissZippy said, I bet it IS a roller coaster for you right now. But, you are so so so smart to respect your "injury".

I love your statement about running simple. Training for a marathon cvan leave me so result oriented, but I am looking forward to lacing up after and running to run.

Wishing you the best always!

Karl said...

I'm new to your blog so I still don't know what kind of foot injury you have, but you're smart to hop on the bike. I have been sidelined twice by my right foot the last year, first PF & recently a stress fracture. Putting in some miles on the bike is the best thing I have done in years. (I think pool running sucks so we may have that in common). I hope that you can salvage some of your running goals, in a new and different way that might even be better than your original ones!

Thanks again for your giveaway! Runners and cyclists truly are the best people I know.

Candice @ I Have Run said...

I understand the disappointment, but it sounds like you have a great attitude.

Sounds like I need to see that movie. And I've had to remind myself that I have years and years more than once.

I hope your foot continues to feel better!

Wendy said...

Injuries are so hard!
I'm glad you've found some other things to keep you busy when you're not running.