February 1, my friend Dora (amazing athlete and Ragnar Trail Ambassador) organized a trail run to get everyone excited about June’s relay. So a bunch of us piled in my car and headed out to Manassas Battlefield Park for an EASY trail run.
I was petrified, as I am a terrible klutz and thought I’d end up face down in the dirt. But I went out there and loved it! After we finished one loop and checked our time we realized we still had time for 2 more miles!! SO off we went for a quick out and back. I had so much confidence from our first loop, I stopped paying attention to the ground and bit it – tumbled right over a tree root and landed face down in the dirt. Luckily I was surrounded by moms, so I was cleaned up and back on my feet in no time. My pride was the most damaged part of me, but I was feeling OK, all be it a bit bloody and bruised. And my biggest fear had come true and I still loved it!!!
I took it easy for a few days. My cuts healed up and I was back out running by later in the week. A couple of weeks later I went to foam roll my calves and as I pushed on my hands to get leverage, the places where I had bruised screamed in protest. I as forcefully reminded me that injuries run deep – physical, emotional and otherwise – and we have to treat ourselves with care.
Sometimes it takes time to heal.
As I have shared, I have been battling over-training injuries since last fall. The mileage and speed I added last year did wonders for my ego, but left me a little battered. So today I am being very careful to rehab myself properly. I have…
- Gotten new shoes after a full gait analysis
- Added specialized inserts for my foot and injury type
- Started visiting a sports chiropractor weekly
- Added monthly massage to my budget
- Added more yoga, stretching and strength training
- Started paying better attention to my diet and water consumption
- Slowed down considerably to allow my body to find its natural balance
And it is SO hard. I hate my aches and pains. I hate the feeling that I’ve overdone it. I hate being patient. But I know what it means to heal from the inside out. I trust the process and I trust the path. I already feel better and, just like mental health recovery, I know I will leave this process stronger and smarter than I was before.
And just like my bruised hands, and bruised ego, my injuries will heal. I will grow. And in the end I will be stronger.