Since my last post, my health has improved a bit, but not enough. I have been back to the doctor’s and am waiting for results from a chest x-ray and bloodtests. I won’t bore you with the details or the symptoms but as much as I hope to wake up every morning feeling ready for the world and fully recovered, it has not happened yet. Whatever is going on, I clearly have to take it easy for the time being.
Which means my tri training did not start yesterday. I tried 10 minutes of yoga on Sunday and collapsed in a coughing fit, so I know that getting out on the bike / run / in the pool would be madness. Which leaves me – well – reassessing?
I’m not making any major decisions yet re the tri in July – I either will or I won’t be able to train for it, so I either will or won’t do it. I am definitely heading out to Oregon for the relay in August, however – I’ve swallowed my pride and Jen and Zach are allocating me some of the shorter legs. No PRs but plenty of fun – I am ready for that. As for longer term – a few weeks ago I was batting around the idea of a November marathon. But I’ve pulled out of my London-Paris bikeride, I’ve pulled out of a 100K bikeride I was due to do in 10 days, I may be pulling out of my tri – right now I’m not committing to anything until I actually feel better.
Prudence (a voice I seldom listen to but she has a way of being right) tells me that when I do eventually feel better – and I’m officially off exercise for another 2 weeks – I will have lost a lot of fitness and need to build things back up slowly. My osteopath has advised me to find some shorter races to run – perhaps to run 2 or 3 half marathons in October and November and to use those to get my speed and endurance back before starting London marathon training again in December. I will have to see.
What this episode has made me realise, more than anything else though, is just how much I take my health for granted. I have been sidelined from training through injury before, but never this long due to illness. Cross-training is not an option – there is no form of physical exercise I can take part in right now, other than walking – and as you might expect, I am struggling with this. I know in my head that running has been a big part of how I identify myself and feel good about myself – now I can feel it in my heart, because I don’t feel the same. This is no earth-shattering insight – I imagine that two good runinng blogging buddies of mine, Miss Zippy and Jill, who have both been sidelined from running for a long time, can relate to this.
What it’s also allowed me to see, and this is a somewhat more disturbing insight, is that I have for some time being using running and training as a way not to focus on much else. I have been a stay-at-home mother on and off now for years – there was a 2 year period where I worked out of the home and I’ve taken on various freelance jobs when they’ve come along – but all in all I have not taken my career – such as it is – very seriously in the last 11 years. And while that was fine for a while, and running was enough of a focus for me to be able to handle being a stay-at-home mother, my situation is changing now and I want to find a fulfilling and flexible career for myself. It’s a scary situation to face up to but I’m trying to muster the confidence and courage that running has given me and apply it to the rest of my life.
All of this will, I’m sure, be easier once I’m able to run again to take the pressure off… In the meantime, I’m going to be brave and face the future and my fear of failure. Stay with me, my friends!
|In the absence of a decent current photo – who wants to see me looking pale and pasty? This is me with my Big 5 marathon medals – London, Boston, New York, Chicago (x2) and Berlin. No, I did not get the prize money as well…|