My Running Sabbatical

I just ran 3 miles and it felt great!

It’s true, absence makes the heart grow fonder.

Three miles would normally be meaningless to me, but I haven’t run much at all since the beginning of August – and this is a really big step.  It’s been far too long.  But, I’ve come to realize that this break has been really good for me.  I mean, really good.  I’ve needed this break since probably mid-2017 when I continued to slog through the miles because running was the only way I knew how to get through some incredibly tough months.  I wholeheartedly believe that our bodies tell us what they need.  My body was suggesting a break for quite a while. When I chose to ignore my body’s signals, my body revolted by shutting down.  It had to scream “YOU NEED A BREAK!!”.   It took a severe calf strain to get my attention.

Yes, it’s frustrating that I couldn’t do something that I enjoy.  And after Richmond, I was super happy for my friends, but I shed a few tears because I wasn’t running. It has not been easy. Many days, I wondered if my running days were over.

But, I’m trying to see the good in every situation, so here are a few things that I’ve enjoyed in several months of not running.

  • Stress plus rest equals growth.  I believe this is true not only in training cycles, but perhaps on a more macro basis as well.  It was good to push reset.  My body feels pretty good right now and I know my running fitness will return.
  • I was so consumed with running and training that there wasn’t room for much else in my headspace.  I feel smarter and more focused right now. I feel refreshed.
  • There are other things besides running.
    • I’ve rediscovered my love of cycling, found hot yoga, and I have enjoyed several months of early morning personal training dates with my husband.
    • I’ve enjoyed sleeping in on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays.  It’s been a long, long time.
    • Family time! I have more time with and patience for my family.
    • I’ve enjoyed social events. I haven’t had to pass up social events and alcohol, so I could be ready for the next day’s workout.
    • I’ve been able to dive into work like I haven’t done in a while. I have also started working on a concept that I’d like to one day bring to life.

I’m hoping to be well enough to join Kimberly and Karen for our Advent runs in a few weeks, but there’s no pressure to get back to it.  My sights are set on the Rock and Roll New Orleans half marathon in February.

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