Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Ten Good and Bad Things About Not Being Able to Run

This weekend I was supposed to be racing a half-marathon. I paid for it back in January. That race will mark my second Did Not Start (DNS) ever, and it will be swiftly followed by a 15K DNS on April 28. My first DNS was a 10-mile race I signed up for in 2006. My excuse then was that I had just found out I was pregnant with twins--I wasn't sad about missing that one.

Because I AM sad about missing these two races, I thought I'd better do some hard-core non-Terzah-like seeking of the positive. Number one, I am pleased to report, isn't negative at all. Two and three are pretty positive too. They may go downhill from there, though.

1. When I realized, yes, I WOULD be missing this race, I scheduled a trip to California, where I will be meeting two people I am very excited to see in person. They are:

My month-old niece, Lucy Anne!


Caroline, the Canadian Runner in Exile

Who needs a half-marathon?

2. I am catching up on sleep in a serious way. It's true, I do get up early on some weekdays to get the recumbent bike sessions in. But since I'm sleeping in on the every other days off that I'm forced to be taking by the physical therapy process, I'm getting at least four hours more of sleep per week than I was getting when I was running and/or spinning six days a week. This feels GOOD.

3. I have more energy to pay attention to my diet, and it shows. I have gained no weight since the running interdiction. I'm continuing my "no sugar except on Sundays" thing beyond Lent. I still have cravings for sugar, but they are much abated. On Monday, the day after my Easter chocolate binge, I actually felt hung over. My mind seems to have finally learned that sugar is the reason for that lousy state--and has stopped asking for it. Today I sailed by the candy bowl at work and only later realized I....didn'

4. Learning patience is no longer optional. I have to learn it in order for this never to happen again. And I never want this to happen again.

5. An easy 20-minute run is no longer something I would turn my nose up at. I'd be slavishly grateful to be able to do one, in fact. Small blessings, right?

6. I've been forced to slow down in many ways. This has not been a bad thing. But I'm learning that I'm really not a person who wants to slow down. When I can go fast again, I will. I need to remember point number 4 in the meanwhile, though. Sigh.

7. The last time I had this little control over what I wanted to do with my time was when I had two infants/toddlers. I like having control. Life doesn't always let you have control. Suck it up.

8. Boy, being injured does nothing for helping you become a nicer person. I'm jealous--GREEN WITH ENVY--of everyone running the Boston Marathon on Monday, the Bolder Boulder in May and just about any race you can name out there. True, I would not have been at Boston even had I not been injured. I haven't earned a spot. But at least I could have been working towards it.

OK, so that's not a good thing about not being able to run. I guess maybe learning about your own bad qualities is a good thing, because then you can work toward improving them. Except I'm finding it really hard to do that. I'm just....jealous, and likely to stay that way.

What would a good person do? Walk races, maybe. Volunteer. Go out and cheer other people on. I do plan to do the latter for Kathy and Cynthia and Jill and Julie (and virtually for others of you). You are friends and I want you all to succeed. But I don't want to walk races or volunteer right now. I just don't. I want to run. If I can't run and there's no one to cheer for, I'm staying home and doing my PT exercises for the umpteenth time.

9. I'm starting to resent the Facebook pages I've liked that have anything to do with running. I'm particularly sick of the one that says, "You either ran today or you didn't." Yeah, so I didn't. Can YOU come fix my back so I can, please? No? Then don't thrust that self-righteous statement in my face.

Maybe this will teach me to be less self-righteous toward non-runners. Maybe they have reasons we don't understand for not doing what they don't do.

10. I'm being more pushy with my husband about his running. Every day that he runs I make him share every detail with me. The hill steep? And how much did you sweat? What did it feel like when you were done? Did you know there's a 5K at the Reservoir next week? Wanna do it? Can I watch?

It's sort of pornographic, voyeuristic, something.

Lucky thing, he still loves me. Even after nearly six weeks of me not being able to run, when I'm not loving myself so much.