Warning. This is not going to be an upbeat post. I’m struggling and need to vent.
I haven’t been running since Sunday.
It doesn’t mean that I haven’t been active. I’ve fit in a power yoga session, and I spent two more days criss-crossing Disney World (11 hours in Hollywood Studios and five hours in Magic Kingdom, respectively) in scorching heat. I’m sure these count for something, but it’s not what I want to be doing for training.
My plan was to wake up this morning and do another 15 minutes of running, as a warm up for a bridge workout tomorrow.
You know what they say about the best-laid plans.
My throat burns and the congestion behind my nose is high in the morning when I wake up, and when I go to bed. It takes a few hours for everything to settle to kind of normal-ish, but even then, it’s not quite right. Then there’s a danger of going out in the heat, under-hydrated and improperly fueled. In the summer weather, even before the sun rises, it’s a bad idea. While, interestingly, we are not experiencing the triple digit heat waves that other parts of the country are suffering, it’s still hot and humid and one has to be safe and smart. Since June 27, I have dropped from a size 12 to an 8 in jeans. On the one hand, yay for a smaller size. On the other, the weight loss has come about from not being able to eat much and is neither healthy nor sustainable.
I’m frustrated. If my knees or my ankles were injured, I think I would be better equipped to deal with the setbacks. It would be easier to isolate the area for resting and strengthening. However, there’s not much I can do but “take it easy.” Which is absolutely not the way I function. However, there is really no pampering the throat. I have to breathe, swallow and talk. When I spoke to the ENT’s office this morning, they suggested I chew gum to help rebuild the muscles. Which is great, except for the fact that I have temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMJ), where gum chewing can lead to my jaw locking or misaligning. Not appealing.
The whole thing has been two steps forward, three steps back.
What’s worse is that the frustration has segued to fear. A month ago, I was gung ho about registering for races. I would scour the local running websites for details to be released about new 5 and 10Ks so I could get signed up. Now, when my running friends ask me about joining them for some runs, I’m declining. I’m scared. Terrified that I can’t do it, that I’m going to fail. I know all about fearing fear itself and you can only fail if you don’t get out there, but my confidence and bravado is waning.
I’m not going to quit. It’s just not an option. And yet, I don’t know how I’m going to edge back into training. It’s so overwhelming and I feel so behind. My legs want to run. My heart does, too. I want to be out there, putting in more miles and building my endurance, but my body is saying it’s just not ready.
For better or worse, a lot is riding on tomorrow’s effort. If I can get myself over that bridge one time, it’s going to be a huge boost. I’m hoping it will be the motivator to push through to a more regular schedule and that will help me feel better about my upcoming races, especially the Stadium Challenge in two weeks. I’m trying not to be too hard on myself, but personal pressure is ingrained in me and I just can’t stop feeling down.
I’m even considering bribes to myself. For example, I’m almost ready for new Mizunos. I am about at the point where I’m telling myself if I can complete a full week of good training, I can go ahead and treat myself. Whatever works, right?
I hate being negative and down. It’s not productive and it detracts from focusing on getting better. However, we’re all entitled to a little wallow from time to time. This needs to be it for me. I’m going to concentrate on what I HAVE been doing well, the great time we had with family over the past two weeks and the fun we’ll have in the weeks to come.
How do you conquer your fears?
Do you ever treat yourself to a motivating gift? What’s been your favorite?