Monday, December 10, 2012

What I've learned while being injured

Tis better to have run and gotten injured than to have never run at all.

When people ask about my most recent accidental injury, my ankle sprain, and I tell them that I did it on a trail, most people say that's why they are afraid to run trails.  There have been a few days during this period of not running that I have cursed that leaf covered, rock and root ridden trail.  But mostly, I've been o.k.  When I think back on this year and the places I've been, the views I've seen, and the people I've been with, I can't help but just be grateful to have been there and experienced it all.  I've been to the tops of mountains, gained perspective, and strengthened relationships through it all.  I wouldn't trade that for the 4 weeks that I couldn't run.  It's been an amazing year.

During those 4 weeks I snowshoed with my husband going further up the canyon than we did last year.  It was absolutely gorgeous and just what I needed that day.

I've hiked with my son to places he's talked about for years.  I'm soaking up every last minute that I can with him.  He's going to be leaving for Santiago Chile in 40 days for 2 years.  He's decided to serve a mission for our church and I couldn't be happier about his decision except that I'm going to miss him so much.  These hikes together are precious time and I wouldn't trade that for all the running weeks in the year.

I've focussed on my yoga a bit more and am loving it the more I do it.  I joined an Instagram challenge to do a pose a day and photograph it.  It's really helped me see what my body is doing and ways I can improve. It's also been fun to be creative and get my kids involved.  My name on Instagram is Runnerjen1 if you want to follow me.

I don't like being injured.  No one does.  But I didn't go crazy this time.  I knew I could find things that would keep me active and my mind busy until I could run again.  And I am back to running.  My ankle isn't 100% yet but it is still improving each day, even on the days I run.  I'm working on strengthening it still and getting full mobility back.  I also got into the second round of the Ogden Marathon in May and have that to look forward to again.

Being injured also gives time for reflection.  I know some people look for excuses not to run.  I know that some think I'm crazy for loving to run.  This injury gave me cause to pause and reflect on really why I run.  Cycling is not the same.  Swimming is not the same.  I decided that while it's so many reasons: my sanity, the physical challenge, ability to eat junk... I think one of the biggest reasons why I run is to be out in nature.  The trails are where my heart longs to be.  It's where I belong.  I love the perspective change from the top of the mountain.  I love the silence.  I love the constantly changing scenery.  I love being in trees.  I love rocks.  I love rivers.  And if I have to risk a scraped knee, a banged up toe or another sprained ankle to be there, I will willing go.

What about you?

What is your number one reason to run?

Oh, and I've run out of photo storage on blogger.  Time to make some decisions.  Advice?