The Running Connection

I like reading running blogs.  Even currently in my very minimally running state, I like reading about other runners’ dreams, goals, and accomplishments.  And we runners really are so incredibly similar.  I’m not sure why it continually surprises me but it does.  It’s easy when you hit the depression stage of an injury, to feel completely isolated.  Like you are the only runner in the history of the world to ever deal with something so miserable.  Like it will never end.  Like no one understands.  Like you want to throw things at all the runners you pass in your car.  True story: A guy came into the store last night who’s also been injured since February.  We were commiserating and he said there are days he wishes he had empty cans in the car to throw at people running.  I laughed and told him I knew EXACTLY what he meant.  Happy to know we’re all crazy!  (Disclaimer: this is a joke.  We are not going to go around throwing things at poor unsuspecting runners.  It just amuses me that most runners who’ve dealt with a nagging injury know the feeling.)

So anyway, last night I threw myself the world’s biggest pity party.  The poor guy who was forced to work with me looked like a deer in the headlights.  “What’s wrong?”  “Well… I work in a running store and I CAN’T RUN…. don’t talk to me for 3 months.”  I might also have played some depressing music.  “Tara, can we PLEASE listen to something happier.”  “No we can’t…. and now I have to start it over because you talked again.”  This is what over 2 months of non running does to me!  It’s not pretty.  It’s the roller coaster of emotions.  One day thinking it’s finally made a turn for the better only to have it feel even worse the next day.  Frustration.

I woke up this morning feeling better.  This could possibly be traced back to the frozen yogurt therapy I indulged in last night.  In any case, I got up and checked out what was going on in the blog world.  And you know what?  There’s just something incredibly comforting to have someone else write exactly what you feel.  It makes you feel connected.  It makes you feel like you’re not alone.  And most importantly, that you’re not quite as crazy as you think you are.

Stuft Mama on injury:

“It was weird yesterday. I woke up feeling ready for a big comeback. I haven’t been in the best place with my injury and my eating and just trying to keep it all together.

Yesterday I felt like it was the day to come back fighting. My leg wasn’t hurting as bad, it was warm out, I had my first iced perfect summer mocha of the year, I ordered myself some new huge jugs (that should be arriving today), it was such a beautiful day, I got to spend quality time with my favorite men, etc.

Everything seemed perfect.

 I thought it was the day to jolk (jog/walk) without pain. To start my comeback.

I was wrong.

It’s been over three weeks since I’ve run. It’s tough. Mentally.

My attempt didn’t go well and I decided to stick with just the walking and pushing the heavy stroller. That’s a workout in itself though.

By the end of the day I felt like someone had knocked me down again.

Pooper scooper.

But, I guess that’s all part of life, yes? All part of the journey.”

Holy cow, I know exactly what she’s talking about.  The feelings of hope and optimism, immediately replaced by frustration and disappointment.

Neon Blonde Runner on running:

“I literally had forgotten how mentally and physically refreshing it feels to run.

I had trapped myself so deeply in my thoughts and was so stuck in my rut that I had forgotten that when you step out the door for a run, you can leave some negativity behind, if just for a little while.

Running is a way to
…….put things into perspective,
…….hit an internal reset button,
…….try to jump start yourself when you’re not feeling ‘on’,
…….remember, but in a new light.”

Yep.  Exactly.  EXACTLY.  I get stuck in my head a lot and am just starting to learn how to relax and just enjoy the experience.

Two Little Runners on tapering:

“Most people describe the taper crazies as their legs popping out of their skin, wanting to run. This phenomenon sounds kind of nice. I have not experienced it. Instead, taper feels like my legs are still heavy, I gained 10 pounds from all the lovely carbs (not really, but they do make me feel a bit bloaty). It includes obsessively checking the weather, and always, always developing a new injury that WILL NEVER HEAL BY RACE DAY AND WILL RUIN EVERYTHING AND ALL THAT TRAINING WAS FOR NOTHING. Except it will probably be fine. And I am just a drama queen.”

Oh tapering!  The things you do us.

And reading those things gave me a new sense of optimism.  That we’re all dealing with the same sorts of things.  That other people feel the same way.  That I’m not the only one who goes a little crazy while tapering.  That I belong.  And instead of wallowing and lamenting that I couldn’t run on this incredibly gorgeous day, I got dressed and headed to spin class.

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