My Running Injury

There’s certainly nothing new about running injuries, tweaks, strains, or general aches and pains. From what I’m told, every athlete goes through something similar. Some setbacks are more severe and others require just a few days rest. My “setback” falls into the latter category. I threw quotes around setback because I’m not sure what I’m going through equates to an injury or just a strain. It does, however, suck.

Which brings me to my point. Even the smallest unknown to an athlete training in a new sport new is cause for concern, anxiety, stress, depression, fear or in my case, over reacting panic. That’s the thing about doing something new, everything is an unknown until it isn’t.

Let me explain.

I was on track with my training. Working my plan and hyper-focused on improving with each workout. Believe it or not, I was falling in love with running because the feedback was so immediate. I hit my numbers and I felt thrilled. Most of my runs ended with a fist pump and a head nod – even when the run sucked. Hell, compared to where I was a year and a half ago, I should’ve been throwing myself a party after each run (no, not really).

Then the setback came. I had no idea what it was. No frame of reference. All I knew was that I couldn’t run or do any impact activities. And with that, came a screeching halt to my momentum and confidence. I knew it was temporary but I was scared that one if not both of my races were in doubt. Did I break my foot or shred an achilles? No. Did I over react? Of course I did. I had pain and no “data” telling me why.

I knew better than to worry about the unknown or “tomorrow’s race” because I was supposed to be focused on living in the present. Well, somewhere along the way I forgot how to do that and I let the burden of things I can’t control back into my life.

The funny thing is, I didn’t realize any of this until the pain from the injury subsided. It was with a sigh of relief when I laughed at how my mind took off in every conceivable direction but the right one. Toward my faith.

Had I done everything in my power to prevent the injury?

Yes.

Could I have stretched more, massaged more, or done yoga?

Of course I could’ve done all that but I didn’t.

Did I follow my plan and run correctly? Yep.

The injury I couldn’t control. It happens. But how I reacted to it was within my control. Don’t get me wrong. I didn’t freakout and throw a tantrum. No, I just let my mind spin out of control. Playing out every negative scenario in my head. A fool’s errand for sure.

It wasn’t until I turned toward my faith that the panic and anxiety calmed down. Whatever God had in store for me I had faith it was for a reason. I just needed to settle down and control what I could – my attitude. Which I did.

I am back on track. Healed up and with a better attitude and a deeper faith.

The lesson is no different than any other athlete that experiences an injury. Accept what happened because you cannot change the past. Set a goal for the future and begin the day-by-day work to reach that goal. Whether it takes a week or 4 months, you just might learn something along the way. So, the next time you face adversity – and you will – you won’t go all Tom Cruise and flip out.

“You are so made that you can only carry the weight of twenty-four hours, no more. If you weigh yourself down with the years behind and the days ahead, your back breaks. God has promised to help with the burdens of the day only. If you are foolish enough to gather again that burden of the past and carry it, then indeed you cannot expect God to help you bear it. So forget that which lies behind you and breathe in the blessing of each new day.”  – 24 Hours a Day

This picture was taken by my stepson, Alex. I was proudly acting like a goofball displaying his gift to me for Christmas. It’s a curved glass tray for holding my keys, change and whatever else fills my pockets. A great reminder to see on a daily basis. 

Ice Up Son