Counting tomorrow, this will be a complete 2 weeks straight of no running what so ever, well, besides that short treadmill jaunt I took at the hotel on Tuesday, which ended in extreme frustration. And let me tell you, it’s really beginning to take its toll on my mental state. My world is just all messed up. Admittedly, I can’t complain about my days on the whole. I’ve got a solid job, a wonderful relationship, house, home, etc. etc., but I’m also gonna be completely honest about how I’m feeling right now. And how I’m feeling is incredibly frustrated and sulky. See, running is what I DO. It’s one of a very few self-initiated, almost always satisfying activities I do on a daily basis, and so, if you take that away, then I can’t help but feel like I’ve missed out on something great. And if you take that away for an extended period of time, well, then things start to get downright dismal. I was trying to explain this to a friend the other day when I used an example he could relate to. Being as he’s a DJ, I explained that it would be similar to how he would feel if his computer was stolen. No matter what other good he has going on in his life, if his ability to make music was gone, it would permeate everything else. He got it. I had the same conversation with another friend of mine who sympathized with a little more lightheartedness when she said, “Awwwwww, it’s like you lost your favorite doll.” Yeah, it’s kinda like that.
Adding insult to injury, somewhat literally, this had to happen right in the middle of intense training and just when I started to make some exciting and noticeable progress in my runs. I was gearing up for awesomeness when my body geared me right back down. It would have been one thing if my leg took me out after a big race or during the winter or something, but this time it happened at almost the worst possible moment. And not only did it put an abrupt halt to my training, but it affected one race, cancelled another and is probably cancelling yet another. That means, if this injury resolves itself soon, I’ll have approximately 5 weeks left before the Mini, but with no races leading up to it. I can handle that no problem, but it’s not really the way I was wanting to go into that race. Ultimately, above all else, I just want my leg to heal.
And speaking of that, I still have NO idea what’s going on with it. That consistent tightness is still there. The restrictive pain, although gone during normal walking, is right there as soon as I put running weight on the leg. And like a bad April Fool’s Day joke, it disappeared the whole day of April 1st, leading me to believe I was almost in the clear, but then came right back the very next day. And now I’m on some sort of back and forth cycle with this pain, despite not running AT ALL, or not even doing any sort of aerobic activity. No cycling, no swimming, no nothing. Just waiting. But it still won’t go away.
I don’t want to go on and on about this and keep whining. Granted, I want to be honest and convey all the ups and downs of this running experience, but I also don’t want to dwell on it too much, which is actually quite laughable as I think about it almost every second of the day when I’m not occupied by distractions. I’m always considering how to make it better, how to stretch it, how to massage it, how to do nothing to it. But not much changes. Still…What if I sleep more? What if I sleep on my side? What if I don’t stretch at all? What if I stretch all day? What if I go for a 10 mile run? What if I sleep with my foot above my head? What if I amputate and enter the disabled categories? It’s downright obsessive. I just want to forget about it and move on…but I can’t. I was on vacation this past week and even during hikes in some of the most beautiful natural areas I’ve ever stepped foot in, I found myself almost involuntarily jamming my hiking stick into the ground out of frustration when I thought about my inability to run at this point of my training cycle.
I know, it sounds whiny and stupid, but this is how it is. There is a part of me that wants to scold myself for being so petty and there is a part of me that wants to apologize to everyone for letting this be such a priority that it affects my daily activities and moods….but I can’t, because I also can’t deny how important running is to my life right now and how important my goals related to running are. Part of me wants to be ashamed and wants to see running as something completely episodic and inconsquential, but to be ABSOLUTELY HONEST, I know it’s not. I know it’s one of the most important aspects of my life, no matter how others might see it. It’s not THE most important, but it’s up there. So when it’s taken away, when I’m not ready, I can’t help but feel incredibly frustrated and obsess over when I’m going to be able to get back to it.
And that’s currently where I am…still waiting. Waiting for this leg to heal. Wanting to understand exactly what is going on down there. I’m continuing to assess my possibilities and it looks like I might try another short run tomorrow as it felt relatively decent today…just to see how it responds. Beyond that, I might be getting back on the bike again and trying to maintain some fitness, as long as I’m not aggravating my leg further. I’m also considering going to a local sports doctor for assessment, as well as potentially setting up a consistent massage schedule with a local chiropractor/massage therapy business. Nothing is set yet, but I just can’t imagine adding yet another week to the 2 I’ve already missed. I mean, can you hear that? That’s the sound of my recently developed fitness blowing away in the wind. If my leg doesn’t get better soon, catching back up to it will take longer and longer.
Here’s to positive thoughts and quick recoveries.