I’m sad, which makes me feel guilty since Navy Wife just gave me the Sunshine Award and everything.
On Tuesday night, Mr. T told me he wanted to join the gym. I looked up from Born to Run and asked him when he thought he would be able to fit it in.
He shrugged. “I could go in the evenings.”
I shot back at him that I used to go in the evenings except he complained he never saw me so I started getting up at the crack of dawn in order to be home in the evenings.
Even as I spoke, I knew I was in the wrong. My video-game-playing husband wants to do something healthy and I essentially discourage him right off the bat. Way to be supportive, there, wife.
We stared at each other for a minute until I started crying. “I wish I could run,” I blubbered. “I miss running.” I hope he got my apology because that’s basically what that was. Understand?
No? Translation: “Sorry, hon, you can work out in the evenings if you want. It doesn’t matter anyway because it’s not like I’m ever going to run again.”
Dramatic much? But my shin being sore Tuesday hurt more than my leg. It damaged my view of recovery, which I believe should end exactly when the doctor said it would: at the earliest, 8 weeks, and at the longest, 12. Not a day after.
What if I haven’t made any progress? What if working out is making it worse? And how the hell can I know?
It’s so frustrating.
I’ve been athletic my entire life. I learned to snow ski when I was 3. I killed triple-black runs at Squaw Valley, I wiped out on a water ski behind the Master Craft every summer, I played soccer from grades 1-12 and had clete marks on my inner thigh for a month a couple of times (in college it was turf burn from Martin Stadium), I took plenty of kicks to my head during water polo games, I ran 5 miles in 100-degree weather nearly every day of the week during cross country season, I fielded a line-drive between my shoulder blades, and I’ve even been caught not knowing which way was sand and which way was sky more than once in the Pacific.
And now I’m hurt from running too much? What the hell? It’s messed up. It’s not fair. I want a do-over.
Homesick one night in my Pullman dorm room, I put on my grungy Nikes, a black pair of soccer shorts and a bulky GAP hoodie, and walked across the street to Mooberry track. I was all alone as I ran under the tall fieldhouse lights. The cold Palouse air stung my thighs red, and it felt wonderful. I only stopped after 20 laps because it was getting pretty late and I had classes in the morning. I felt refreshed. Renewed.
More than ever, now that I can’t run, I am realizing how much it is an important part of my life. I don’t know how I survived without it so long. All those years — after college till last year — I could’ve been running and now I’m trying to make up for lost time. There’s something about the simple deep-breath-in-and-out-swing-your-arms-put-one-foot-in-front-of-the-other rhythm that helps me think. It puts life in perspective. It makes me a better person (when I’m not stressing about training for a marathon, I better add). It connects me with my spirit, with nature. Do I dare compare running to religion?
Do you go to church? I haven’t been in a while, I hate to admit. I’m one of those bad Catholics. But I know the feeling after you leave mass. It’s almost as if you are starting over. You’re all shiny and new, and ready for whatever the week is going to throw at you. Kind of what running does, right?
I didn’t work out on Wednesday morning because of my shin. I want this thing healed, darn it! And I didn’t go to the gym today either. I may head to the pool tonight, but I’m not sure since my doctor appointment is tomorrow morning. And my shin is a little sore (it doesn’t hurt, but I can feel it), which is extremely disappointing since I skipped two workouts to avoid that.
Sorry to be such a Debbie Downer, but I just don’t feel like myself lately. My running spirit is so far down in the dumps, you might as well just consider it buried. And, frankly, I am losing interest in the bike and the elliptical with each second. The only thing that has been keeping me going is a good book and the thought of the 10K on my birthday in September.
Maybe if/when Mr. T joins the gym, we can go together sometimes. That might be nice…
What kept you going when you were injured?