What’s comforting me

…no I don’t mean dessert (that I know I’ll be having tonight since I’m committed to my challenge).

I’m really not in a happy place about my injuries, but I’m coming to terms with it. I’m trying to remember that despite the fact that I’ve gone about 10 days without being able to spin or run, I AM OKAY. I am still me, even though I feel like part of my identity is missing. Questions about whether or not I’m teaching a spin class make me want to cry because I really really really wish I could. Maybe this is all a well timed reminder that I should be grateful to be able to teach, to run, to do what I can. Was I getting ungrateful or dreading my workouts and this is karma? I don’t think so, but I can’t describe how badly I want to put on my running tights and just go for a freaking run. I miss my running buddies, I miss the feeling of having achieved another run, I miss teaching, I miss being me. I know I’m being a little dramatic, but if you’ve been in my shoes, you can probably relate.

I’m getting scared about things too: even if I feel better, will I be scared to run? What if it comes back? What if the hills in the Around the Bay Race make this hip flexor angry again come March when this kind of thing would be worse for my triathlon ambitions? What if what if what if?

What if all this worrying is making it worse? I know the power of positive thinking, so I’m going to try to shift all my focus towards thinking positively:

  • I can swim and I should swim. I got into the Master’s group officially on Tuesday and Thursday mornings so at least some of my workouts have a social aspect and can be planned by someone else!
  • I can do yoga and I know that it will probably help my hip.
  • I can focus on my school work, the Gazette, and all the other things that keep me busy.
  • I can really commit to training smart from here on out: no more random long runs just for the heck of it. No more not stretching after a big workout. Foam rolling all the time. More yoga.
  • It’s only January. Even if I can’t do the Hypothermic Half in two weekends (or can’t race it but use it as a training run instead–this is kind of my hope), I PROBABLY will be okay for Around the Bay. It’s not til March! I definitely do not have to let this freak me out in terms of tris, which don’t start til the end of May! The extra time in the pool is important, and my body is probably loving a break from the spin classes in some way.
  • I don’t have the compulsion to exercise like I used to. I think I would have gone insane if this had happened a year ago.
  • I’m reading up on injuries and realizing I am not alone, this will get better, and I’m going through a lot of things that other people did. This Runners Feed article about injury management puts it in perspective and is making me think ahead to my return to training.
  • I will not get fat from this. My body knows what it’s doing. I stole this from Active.com’s article about injury, diet, and recovery:

Q: “I’m afraid I’ll gain weight now that I’m injured and can’t exercise the way I like to …”

A: According to weight-control theory, the more you exercise, the more you’ll eat; the less you exercise, the less hungry you’ll be and the less you’ll eat. But life factors easily confound this simple system and some athletes do gain weight because they eat for reasons other than hunger.

For example, an injured athlete who meets up with his teammates for dinner (after they have worked out) may eat just as much as they do which could be 600 excess calories for him.

Many active people equate weight gain with lack of exercise, but I often equate it with stress. That is, weight gained with injury generally relates to injury-created stress and unhappiness.

Injury is a good time to learn that your body won’t get fat on you. If you eat when you are hungry and stop when you are content, you won’t gain weight. Just be sure to use food for fuel, not for entertainment or lifting your spirits. (Note: You may gain some weight if you are very underweight but you’ll also get healthier.)Important: Do not severely restrict your food intake when you are injured. Your body needs adequate nutrition to heal your injury. Eliminating healthful foods hinders the process. Be wise!

SO many good tidbits. I love that it points out that the unhappiness is the issue, not the not being able to train. I’ve GOT to change my perspective! I can do this. I also LOVE that they point out that this is an OPPORTUNITY and a CHANCE to show yourself that you’re not going to explode and get fat due to an injury. With my dessert challenge, trusting is already on my agenda, but this is so healthy to look at it as an OPPORTUNITY and something positive rather than a sentence or something to suffer through. Taking positive things–a renewed gratefulness, dedication to smart training, and the opportunity to show myself that a week or two off won’t kill me or wreck my fitness or body–from this is key.

“Pain is inevitable.  Suffering is optional.”  ~M. Kathleen Casey

“If you’re going through hell, keep going.”  ~Winston Churchill

One. day. at. a. time.

I will not be injured forever–to think that this hip will be sore forever is RIDICULOUS. I need to keep that in mind. I also need to stay focused on these positive realizations I’ve made and just channel all my energy into good things. Yes it’s cheesy, but cheese is where it’s at.

How have you dealt with injury in the past?
What’s a crappy situation you put a positive spin on for yourself?
What’s your favourite make yourself feel better quote? 

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