Thursday, June 20, 2013
When I left off my story, I'd injured the formerly good left foot on my run Tuesday. I got my 10K steps in on Tuesday, but not much more.
Wednesday was tough. It was a day in the office, which made it easy to get a lot of gentle steps; but that foot hurt a lot. My lunch walk was both shorter and slower than usual. I used RunKeeper, which reported that I walked a sedate 21 minute per mile average pace. For all of 22 minutes. I almost bailed on the thought of mowing the lawn, which needed it Tuesday; but then I remembered someone describing the modern running shoe as being "like a cast," thus causing foot muscle atrophy. I reasoned that this was a bit of an exaggeration, but my steel toed lineman's boots used for lawn mowing would be more like a cast. So I put on the boots, found that they were protecting the feet pretty well, and got the lawn mowed. That took the time Wednesday evening that might have otherwise gone into a blog, but that was OK.
Thursday morning, a work at home day and normally a running day. I'd already decided today was a non-running day. Even if I hadn't, about two paces of beginning to run in the hallway would have been enough to convince me. No light jogging in the hallway today, either. The better part of valor was to put on sandals for the morning routine instead of staying barefoot as I usually do.
The pre-work walk timed out to a pace of 17 minutes per mile. Improvement, but still pretty slow. But, this was a work at home day. Unlike yesterday, I remembered to take my ibuprofen. And with the convenience of my own freezer available, I could decide to ice down my feet on short notice. That helped, and the noon walk timed out to an average pace of 15:40 per mile. Still not normal, but close enough that I can see normal from there. And the foot felt good enough that getting my 10K steps today wasn't much of a problem.
Not being able to run is harder emotionally than physically. I got a bad case of the don't cares in the mornings, and skipped the TGUs and kettlebell snatches. However, force of habit got me through the normal sets of pullups and pushups. I should pause here and be thankful that I built some good habits to pull me through days of low motivation.
And I trimmed 100 calories from my nutrition range yesterday. It looked like I wouldn't be running for a while, so it seemed a good idea to give myself permission to eat less. If this turns into an extended period of not running, I may have to trim the range further. Particularly if I remain so unmotivated as to skip the kettlebell routine most mornings.
I have a few what-if regrets: What if I'd learned to run slower? What if I'd worn the newer lightweight shoes and quit sooner because I felt it sooner? What if I lose another summer for running, and don't learn to deal with hot weather? It was 72°F when I walked at noon. That was comfortable for walking, and a missed opportunity to learn a bit about running in warm weather. All of this feeds the non-motivation, and I'm trying to walk away from that kind of thinking. Hence, this blog, talking out the thoughts so the bad ones can be dismissed and the good ideas can become more solid.
My current plan is, I will skip Saturday for running, even if the feet feel healthy. Clearly, I'm overly optimistic about how good is good enough to run on. So let's compensate for that by taking an extra day off after I *think* I'm good enough to come back. Plan B says, it's probably time to take a full week off. That feeds my non-motivation, but sounds wiser than just skipping another day.
So, how bad is it? Really, not that bad. I can't run right now. That's frustrating, but I've been there before. I need to cultivate the patience that got me through the last time like this. I'm low on motivation, but I've been there before. I need to do the right things, even if I'm not doing them enthusiastically, and wait for the motivation to return. History leads me to believe it will return, perhaps soon, perhaps not so soon, but it will come back.
Meanwhile, give myself pep talks. Treat the feet right. Take that ice bag to work, and ice them down in the morning. Try to get some ice out of the cafeteria at noon so you can ice them down in the afternoon as well. Remember to take that ibuprofen at work; that's why you have some in your desk. And if you have to walk slow, walk slow . . . but walk.
Life goes on, even without motivation. Just have to be ready for the fun when the motivation comes back.