When the start of a new year means being chained to the couch, the emotions associated are akin to feelings of failure and laziness. However irrational that may seem, it’s how I feel and I can’t describe where it comes from. While everyone around you is “starting the new year with a new workout,” I’ll admit, watching from the sidelines has been pretty difficult. Since my surgery, (for those of you new to my story, I had hip surgery at the end of 2017 to repair a torn hip labrum) I’ve been working on celebrating the small things. This would include; sleeping on my right hip during the night, being able to put weight on my right leg, not being queasy at basically all hours of the day, being able to get up and move around the house, and having enough energy to crutch around town on my own.
For anyone overcoming an injury, sick, or out of the game for this or that circumstance, you’re not alone. Being unable to do the one thing that makes you feel invincible is a really difficult prospect to have to deal with both mentally and physically. It’s an entirely new lesson on the importance of patience, and the strength in being persistent. Not sealing your fate when things become challenging has been what I’ve been struggling to overcome with most frequently. You see, I typically suffer from what I deem an all or nothing syndrome. For example, “I’ve not run in over two months, I must not be a runner anymore,” or, “well, I overate at lunch so my whole day is ruined. May as well eat trash for dinner too,” are phrases I wish I was the one who’s ever said. But sadly I know I’m not.
Taking a step aside from what you love isn’t the end all, be all. Notice I said aside and not back. Learning how to partition your passion and patience only helps you grow in the long run. It ensures you’re doing it for the right reason. I know I love to run. I love it more than anything. And I love it so dang much because it’s something I taught myself how to do. Subsequently running has taught me how to be resilient, how to be brave, how to suffer and how to love. Which is where and why I currently find myself stripped to what is seemingly a very bare minimum. I can no longer do the thing that has taught me how to be the best version of me. It’s been an entirely new challenge in discovering the value of identity. Who am I if I can’t do what I’ve done day in and day out for nearly half of my existence on this planet? Who am I if I can’t experience the inherent joy being outside on the trails provides to my soul? Who am I if I can’t even walk!? Again, it’s a humbling lesson being that this is all temporary. It nearly feels like a sick joke. There are others who don’t have the luxury of know this too shall pass.
Being injured is temporary. And while eventually the wounds will heal and scab over, it’s not to say the pain doesn’t hurt in the moment. Mentally I’ve never felt so exposed in my entire life. It hurts to even look at pictures of old races and adventures I went on. It hurts to know that the goals I set for myself for this upcoming year are so beyond different than what I anticipated that it’s comical. Right now the thing I’m looking forward to the most is are all the little things. Walking on the beach without crutches, riding my bike to the movie store, being able to get in and out of the car easily, hell, being able to do all the things you don't realize you need hips for! If you’d have told me a few weeks ago that that was what I was most looking forward to in the new year I would’ve out right belly roared. But I suppose that’s the beauty in all of this. One day you can run 100 miles, the next you can’t even walk from your car to the grocery store without getting tired.
Stay strong my friends. It’s only temporary.
Run Hapi and Healthy,