Sunday, October 26, 2008

No Cape Cod....

Well, not that I really had too much faith that my knee would miraculously mend in time to run Cape Cod, but just about the time I should be basking in the glow of my first marathon finish I am sitting here on my couch wondering exactly what is wrong with my knee. I am not going to lie or sugar coat anything, but I am pissed off that now that I have health insurance I can't afford to go to the doctor to figure out what exactly is wrong with me. Especially when I haven't done anything strenuous for a week, and though it doesn't 'hurt' in the traditional sense, it just feels like something isn't altogether right.

Maybe I just need another week or two or true rest, but it doesn't help my irritation with the health care system and the current election candidates' lip service on the issue(s). It is like both are just towing the rhetoric to election day hoping that their empty promises will get them elected. This really isn't injured runner rage; It is just a concerned citizen wondering what the hell people are thinking about while their country falls apart around them.

I know, I know, stick to the thoughts on running, but honestly, does it bother anyone else that the reason Obama may very well get elected is not because of new fresh ideas that could evolve an elevate the country? I am not affiliated with any party and have read each candidate's major stances and plans (I use that last word loosely) and neither seems to be willing to risk to much to inevitably do what is best for the country. Oh well, enough of that.

This morning was weird. The weather seemed to mirror my feelings of the whole situation with training for nearly three months, getting through all of the longer training runs, including the 25 miler, only to get injured on an easy trail run for no apparent reason other than perhaps tweeking something on the uneven terrain. When I woke up it was misty, cold, and gray - about as depressing as I felt. As the morning progressed the clouds broke up, and just about the time I anticipated finishing the race, the sky was a deep blue with a bright sun bringing out the Autumn colors of the remaining leaves on the trees.

Allegorically, I feel like this will pass and I'll go from this seemingly gray period into a bright blue sky of happy healthy running. I guess the hardest part of the injury is that I was training to simply complete a marathon, not qualify for Boston or run a certain time oriented goal. I know injuries don't discriminate or happen only to those runners training hard, but I was definitely giving myself ample recovery after long runs. I guess I am also upset because running is my preferred method of stress relief and dealing with the anxiety issues I have. Not being able to run almost adds more stress and brings up some of the faith-based questions and issues I have found a bit of peace with through something as simple as a quiet hour of running on a secluded forest trail, or along the shoreline.

In any event, if you have read this far, perhaps you are willing to add to the discussion. I write this blog to share my thoughts on running and life, but in so many ways I think we need to act as a community. I love reading other's stories, and that is one facet of the community, but based on this post an how I am feeling, I'd like to offer the following questions and the invitation for anyone who reads this to respond. Post your response in the comments, or post your response on your blog and just leave a link in the comments here.

1.) What does running do for you?
2.) Have you had an injury that has been over an extended period of time? What got you through that time, and how did that time being injured change your perspective on running or shaped your running goals?
3.) Regarding the forthcoming election and the current state of the U.S., are you an optimist, pessimist, or a little of both?
4.) Do you find a spiritual component or connection with running?

As you can see my time as a College Composition and Rhetoric Instructor is showing - don't worry, no one will be graded!

Here's to Open-Mindedness and civil dialogue! Cheers!

1 comment:

Dan said...

Rob, my cervical stenosis has been bothering me this week so I keep it short. The less time in front of a computer monitor the better.

1. Although I feel a sense of accomplishment from covering great distances or running a fast mile, running is mostly therapeutic for me. My mental stress and worried are lost when I'm alone in the woods or engaged in the friendly banter that occurs during a group run.
2. I was injured and unable to run for one and a half years when I was in my 20s and again last year for 7-8 months. These were indeed difficult times for me as I have been a runner since I was 16. There were times when I was depressed about it but what got me through it was my belief that my situation was temporary and that I would eventually get better. I knew I would be a runner for life. If the price to pay was a few months or a year of inactivity, to enjoy the many more years or running, then it was worth it to me.
3. Oh, don't even get me going on this subject! I could go on forever, but I won’t. Let's just say I am somewhat pessimistic with a McCain presidency. He’s a man past his prime and out of touch with the global economic crisis we are facing. I am VERY pessimistic with an Obama presidency. His associations with radical individuals (Aires and Wright) and his belief in black liberation theology (a racist religion based on Marxism) worry me. Worst, are his political beliefs with are in line with a socialist form of government. I prefer to live in a democracy!
4. I never thought about this much. I would say I am amazed at the beauty of the natural environment I've had the pleasure to run in. I am also more at peace with myself. I guess you could call it spiritual.