back at it. again.

Today was the day.

After resting for a solid two weeks (and then for 10 days prior to running the Gate), I really couldn’t wait anymore.

I can admit that taking off a few days, even a week, can be a healthy and refreshing change, but I was getting edgy and antsy. Fortunately, I had a few things working in my favor to keep me from heading back early to the pavement. Β We were on vacation and our schedule was way too packed for me to think about getting out, and when were home, the weather was pretty miserable with cold temperatures and nasty downpours.

My foot had been feeling better. I’ve been pretty good about stretching my calves and rolling my arch and heel over a variety of spherical and cylindrical items, and it’s been ok. Uncomfortable, but not necessarily painful. When I had talked to the people at the running store, they advised to come back for inserts if things didn’t dramatically improve, and so I did.

I spent about 30 minutes in the store last week, discussing what inserts would do to help (provide much needed arch support) and trying on several different pairs. I could feel a difference immediately, and decided on the Superfeet High-Impact Performance & Comfort insert. I liked the additional cushioning in the toes that the other inserts seemed to be lacking. (Also of note, this product is, according to the website, “vegan and free of latex, nickel sulfate, formaldehyde and preservatives”). I headed out with my purchase, and instructions to start out slow, be aware that things would feel a little unusual for a while and to bring them back in 30 days if nothing was getting better.

Yesterday was the moment of truth. Depsite that fact that I was nervous and really quite happy lounging on the couch and watching Iron Man 2, I pulled on my running clothes, laced up, and headed out. I figured I would give myself a very easy three miles and see how it went.

The truth is, it was discouraging. I think, had it just been some discomfort in my foot (which, inserts or no, would have still been there), I would have been ok. But my legs felt dead, my stamina was shot, and I had made the mistake of putting on a long-sleeved shirt, which ended up being a little too warm.

Of course, all of these irritations opened the door for a flood of negative thoughts. I felt like I was starting from scratch again, and I hated it. It’s disheartening to feel like all the hard work I’ve done to this point has to begin all over again.

What’s worse is that I’m supposed to sign up for my first marathon in two weeks. I had been hoping to register with strength on my side, nailing my long runs and feeling great. Instead, I’m back down at sluggish 5K distances, and having to rebuild from there.

It’s frustrating, and I wonder if I’m doing the right thing by committing to this race. I want to do it, but… Well, there are so many “buts”.

All I can do is press onward. I’m not the first person to struggle with an injury or setback and I won’t be the last. And this isn’t the first time I’ve been sidelined, and I came back from before (although I had much less of a base last year than I do right now, so less was lost). A lot is going to depend on my attitude and positivity and I just have to focus on the big picture: the marathon.

So, here’s a big post-run smile.

Each time out will get better, just as it has done before. My plan is to sign up for a local 5K towards the end of May and then use the summer to start my training and participate in some fun events if I feel like it. My fall and winter is pretty full and I am excited to get to that point on my calendar.

In the meantime, spring seems pretty much here.

If you signed up for a marathon, were you full of doubts leading up to registration? And/or up to the very day of the race?

Are there any signs of spring where you are?

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25 Responses to back at it. again.

  1. Tammy says:

    On the plus side, cute headband. πŸ™‚ You will get it back.. just takes a bit. And signing up for a marathon is a little daunting, weather your first or 21st- It’s a lot. It’s a long way. Just keep building and listening to your body. πŸ™‚

  2. Kathy says:

    HI. I just wanted to let you know this winter was so very hard on me, I wasn’t up for the challenge of running in 15 degrees everyday. (forget I could go to the gym, new puppy, you know how that goes) anyway, I did just start to get back to it. I have been spinning, but those are different muscles. My breathing is getting back, and my body is starting to remember how to run. It is worth the effort. I am very impressed that you want to sign up for a marathon. Well done. just keep at it and everyday will get easier! and yes the cute hairbands are cute!

    • runswithpugs says:

      With 15* temperatures and a new puppy, I wouldn’t be spending time running, either! I think me trying to run a marathon is the height of insanity, but I have to try. Just once.

  3. jan says:

    Glad you’re back out there! Running sure is filled with a lot of unknowns and “buts” but you will get through it!
    jan recently posted…Trail Run Teachable MomentsMy Profile

  4. Anne says:

    Girl I am so sorry you had such a rough first run back I can only imagine how frustrated you must be! Heck yeah for your persistence to say forget that and work your way to where you want to be! I need to take a cue from you!
    With an attitude like that you’ll be rockin and Rollin soon enough!
    Anne recently posted…Food, Food and Basketball – PerfectionMy Profile

    • runswithpugs says:

      It was bad. I guess it could be worse, but ugh. πŸ™

      It’s hard playing the positive role all the time, but a good attitude is part of the overall fight, so I’m going to stick with it!

  5. I completely understand! You’ll be back at it in no time!! It’s so hard to be patient though, and it’s SO EASY to be discouraged!! Just keep at it! πŸ™‚
    Sarah @ Sweet Miles recently posted…Ignite Naturals InRefresh Review + GiveawayMy Profile

  6. Angie says:

    I know it is frustrating to start from scratch! Keep with it, and I am sure your body will remember what to do. Good luck with the marathon training!
    Angie recently posted…A little bit of crazyMy Profile

  7. I stood at the starting line of my first (and only so far) marathon and wondered if I’d finish. And I did πŸ™‚ You’ll do great – I’m hoping the one you’re signing up for is the one I will be registering for in two weeks too, then I can finally meet you!
    Kristen @ The Smith Summary recently posted…Hitting the Reset ButtonMy Profile

  8. Darlene says:

    No sign of spring here…still some snow on the ground. I have never done a marathon. I have done 8 halfs and still have doubts with those.
    Darlene recently posted…March UpdateMy Profile

  9. Oh girl, when I signed up for my full last year, I honestly thought I might curl up in a ball at mile 13.2. Give yourself time to train, and go into it with zero (i mean absolutely zero) time expectations (okay, within course limits) and enjoy it. You can do it!!!
    Cyanne (RunStretchGo) recently posted…Racing Mid Training Cycle: Let’s see how this worksMy Profile

    • runswithpugs says:

      That’s why I am picking a marathon that has very… how shall we say… “generous” pace requirements. I want to do it once, just to say I did and to know that I can, but I don’t think 26.2 miles is my happy spot. I will keep an eye out for the 13.2 Fetal Position Hazard. I’ve heard of “the wall” but not this.

  10. Keep at it! The first run after a break is always the toughest. I know you can do a marathon! As Cyanne said, going into the marathon with no time expectation was the way to go for us. It gave us a (big) challenge but allowed us not to be too hard on ourselves! Hugs!! πŸ™‚
    Karen @karenlovestorun
    Karen @karenlovestorun recently posted…April: Back on TrackMy Profile

    • runswithpugs says:

      I have a wee tiny itty bitty time expectation, but it is basically “don’t be last.” And even that is pushing it. LOL! I just want the experience one time. I mean, 26.2 miles at any speed (above the pace requirements) is a a pretty epic feat, right?

  11. Matilda says:

    I have no desire to ever (right now) sign up for a marathon. I’d rather do a tough mudder. But in saying that, I admire anyone that does decide to go out and do the marathon, seriously just amazing. You are so going to rock it, I just no you will.
    Matilda recently posted…Hips, Gait & RunningMy Profile

  12. Diana says:

    You can always sign up for another marathon at a later date. Running can be a lifelong thing if you take care of yourself… try not to get too down about things. Haven’t you heard? “There is no finish line.” =)
    Diana recently posted…I’m Glad I’m Not FamousMy Profile

    • runswithpugs says:

      I can sign up for another, but I think this is going to be it. I’m not in running for the marathons, but I want to do one (this one) and be done.

      My friend was texting me this morning about how anxious I sounded about it and I had to confess that I still get anxious, even about 5Ks. The actual marathon is a ways off, and I am looking at it from the perspective of being back at the 3 mile mark – not coming off halfway there with long training runs of 13ish miles. I am excited about it, but frustrated.

      And I do have to watch getting down on myself. It’s a flaw I have and I have to keep it in check.

  13. Andrea says:

    Ugh! I’m so sorry your first run back was not so great. It makes me worry about how my first run will be when I’m allowed to run again (it will be 5 months of no running except the 4 races!) And I know your anxiety. I’m contemplating Goofy, but now I’m worried I won’t be prepared with all the time off.

    That being said, I was super scared to sign up for the marathon last year, even when I was in great shape. And I had a blast. You can so do this!! And I’ll be seeing you there the morning of the race!
    Andrea recently posted…Orlando Yelp Event- Kings BowlMy Profile

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