runfessions: embarrassed by limitations

Today, I’m opening up about being embarrassed by limitations. I’m not proud of how I feel, but I do try to be honest about this journey with all its ups and downs.

Let’s join up with Marcia’s Healthy Slice and talk it out in our February Runfessions


I runfess…

That I hate to be in the gym with other people. It’s ridiculous, but I’m embarrassed by limitations. I feel like like people stare at my brace or my limp. Sometimes, they straight up ask me about it, and since we are sharing a small-ish space, I feel that saying “none of your business” would make things uncomfortable. And I don’t mind sharing that information if people are interested, but I also just want to get in, do my workout, and leave. I feel awkward enough navigating the equipment with a not-so-strong leg and the less time I have to spend there, the better.

embarrassed by limitations

I runfess…

That I don’t think I will ever be at one with the elliptical. I can’t put my finger on it, but we just don’t mesh. I’m grateful that I am able to put in more time and distance on it, but there’s just no taking away from the fact that it’s miserable for me

embarrassed of limitations

I runfess…

That I am so embarrassed by my injured leg. I was always so proud of my legs and how strong the were, especially my calves. My ankles were pretty, in my opinion. I even loved my feet: long toes, high arches, and incredible flexibility. Recovering from a broken leg has changed everything. The muscles in my right leg are atrophied and the flexibility in my foot will never be the same. My ankle is “fat” from the hardware and scarred from the surgery. I can’t stand the sight of it. I’m not vain about a lot of things, but this has been hard to get over.

embarrassed by limitations

I runfess…

That I am really anxious about being refitted for shoes. Even though I know I am coming back from injury, I am embarrassed of the scrutiny my lower limbs will get at the running store. I’ve worked in the industry, so I am aware of the exercises they will want to see, but I also worry that it’s going to be one of those longer, more grueling fittings. Everything has to be just right for my foot and ankle, with and without the brace, and it’s just going to be a thing. It’s just me borrowing trouble, of course, but these are the things that keep me up at night.

I runfess…

That I’m missing another two fantastic race weekends: Best Damn Race Orlando tomorrow and the Gate River Run next weekend. These are staples in my running diet, and not being at either one is hard. I really look forward to these big community events, and not being a part of them cuts deep.

embarrassed by limitations

And there you have it. My runfessions for the month.

What dark running secrets would you runfess?

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28 Responses to runfessions: embarrassed by limitations

  1. Catrina says:

    I don’t like the elliptical at all! Although it would have been good for me. However, like you, I couldn’t be friends with it.
    Even when I was injured, I didn’t want to get on that thing. I’d rather walk slowly on the treadmill.

    • runswithpugs says:

      I’m a little nervous to do any exercise walking before I get my sneakers. I’m so close to getting refitted. I think this week will be the time (I’m just waiting for the end of the swelling to go so I can make sure I get a good fit.

  2. Marcia says:

    I only use the elliptical when I’m coming back from injury and MUST use it Otherwise it is not for me either. I’m sorry people ask you questions that make you feel uncomfortable. Thanks for linking!

  3. The elliptical is hit or miss for me. Can you cycle also? After my ACL surgery, I had a huge scar and swelling.MY right leg was a 1/3 of the size of my left. It took a very long time to heal. But you what? Scars fade, muscles rebuild and strength comes back. You will be a bad ass mother runner again soon

    • runswithpugs says:

      I can cycle, but not on a spin bike. It’s fine, but I lost so much strength and flexibility in my whole leg, so I need something to get that all moving and strong again. <3

  4. Laurie says:

    Oh, Jenn…I’m so sorry to read about your struggles. Isn’t it amazing how our lives can change in an instant? I don’t know if you are into this kind of stuff, but Brene Brown writes books that have been really helpful to me in dealing with shame/embarrassment.

    I’m with you about the elliptical. I only used it when I was injured too. At least it does give you some activity that gets your sweat on! 🙂
    Laurie recently posted…February RunfessionsMy Profile

    • runswithpugs says:

      It’s really so upsetting and yes, amazing (although not in the good way).

      I’m glad for the activity. I hate to complain because I get to do something, but I wish it was anything else, really.

  5. The last time I used the elliptical was during the PT for my broken ankle. Hated it.

    You need not be embarrassed. Be proud of your accomplishments.

    You’ve come so far. At this point I was still on the couch.

    Your leg will look slightly bigger than the other and only noticeable by you. The scars will disappear. BELIEVE ME! I know!!

    Wish I lived closer to give you a hug!!
    Darlene S Cardillo recently posted…Friday Five’s Runfessions for FebruaryMy Profile

    • runswithpugs says:

      Thank you, Darlene. Sometimes I think I should have pushed easier at the beginning, to really get things moving, but then maybe that’s just me being silly, too. There so many what ifs in the whole situation.

  6. Chaitali says:

    Sorry you’re having such a hard time with all of this 🙁 You’re working really hard on your recovery and hopefully it will pay off. I’ve definitely found the elliptical to be tough at times. I think it depends on the model, some feel better than others.
    Chaitali recently posted…Plans for the SpringMy Profile

    • runswithpugs says:

      This is a decent model, but my body just feels terribly unnatural going through the movement. I know it’s been great for my leg turnover and strengthening my glutes and hip.

  7. I don’t mind the elliptical, but I’m skeptical of how much of a thorough workout it really is. I use it mainly on my “recovery” days because it gives me cardio with ZERO impact. I seriously doubt the “miles” data it shows me LOL I can relate to the vanity with the scars. The scar on my knee was red for a long time…and it was 6-inches in length and front & center. I still look at it and have a hard time believing the story it represents…

    • runswithpugs says:

      Right? I can’t understand how the mile rack up the way they show on the display! I do think it’s a good workout, but not a great one. And that’s ok. I’m not necessarily going for the calorie burn right now, but when it gets to be that time, I know I will be found lacking. I have a few scars that are probably more prominent, and I am ok with those. For some reason, these bother me.

  8. Michelle D. says:

    The elliptical and I have never been friends I’m not sure what it is about the motion but it doesn’t agree with me.

    I can certainly understand not wanting to relive the experience every time someone asks. I would encourage you to feel proud of how far you’ve come with your recovery – I really think you’ve been doing an awesome job!

  9. I runfess that my body totally doesn’t “get” the elliptical. For me it’s the most boring activity on earth and it hurts my knees. Hang in there, you are getting so strong!
    Beckett @ Birchwood Pie recently posted…Weekly Eats: Another week, another breakfast burritoMy Profile

  10. Wendy says:

    When I’m feeling badly about myself–it happens more often than I’d like–I remind myself of my favorite quote: We are all on our own journey. No one is watching you at the gym, just like no one is watching me at CrossFit. Just do your thing. It’s better than sitting home on the couch!

  11. Cari says:

    *Hugs* body changes, whatever the cause, are hard.
    I go through fits and spurts with the elliptical. The LateralX is closer to my friend than the elliptical will ever be
    Cari recently posted…Running and Social AnxietyMy Profile

  12. When I was recovering from hip surgery back in 2011 I was cleared for the elliptical awhile before I could run. While I was excited to use it, I felt like it made me dislike it more. Now I tend to associate it with being injured, so I don’t like it. I just try to remind myself that it will help me get back in running shape faster!

  13. Aww, I am so sorry. It’s not easy to deal with a huge change like that. I didn’t realize that the hardware actually changes how your leg looks. That sucks.

    OK, I know you’re going to hate me for saying this — but while I agree that it’s 100% ok to feel the way you do, you’ve also got to be grateful that you have 2 legs! Mourn what you lost, but know there are so many who wished they still had 2 limbs. Ok, feel free to hit me upside the head, I’m sure that wasn’t really useful.

    Over the last 5 years or so I’ve had to miss many races with friends because of personal stuff. It sucks. Not much you can do — hopefully next year will be an awesome comeback year for you!

    • runswithpugs says:

      Not going to hate you or hit you upside the head. You’re right. I have pity parties sometimes, hence the runfessions. I am grateful for that, but it’s still hard. <3

  14. Coco says:

    Aw, you shouldn’t be embarrassed by your injury! I think the ellipitcal is a challenge for a lot of us! I have one at home and haven’t been on it in years …

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