Monday, November 10, 2008

Reflection Pool...

There is a longer entry here somewhere for anyone that cares. Maybe it will get written, much like that Blue Hills Skyline Trail Run I still have yet to write, but at this very late hour I am in the proper mood, so I'll just send out a piece for now, and essentially write a longer reflective entry when I have a few things sorted out.

Not being at Stone Cat this weekend was very hard for me. I had intended on going to volunteer and see other trail running friends make their way over the Marathon and 50 mile distances, but sick children provided enough distraction (and sort of a welcoming excuse) to not be there. My nerves kick in here because I had sort of half-assed said I'd be there, and didn't show, so I fear I may have burned a few bridges. Maybe I didn't, but I still suffer from some of the issues of social anxiety that I have been dealing with since adolescence. Again, not an excuse, but whenever I find that I am taking steps in the right direction I have to do with something like this. Part of adopting a carefree, carpe diem, love life approach has helped in some ways, but there are still demons.

Running plays a huge role in providing stress-relief and a sense of accomplishment. I am convinced my success as a college student was linked to the fact that I was a Cross Country and Track athlete. It was only when I was pegged as the team captian that I started stressing about races, and even then, when the gun went off, all you really have is one choice - Run. Aside from that, running showed me I could accomplish anything, so those research papers, presentations, and teaching experiences were gravy.

This past year has seen so many great things - finally a job that I am settling into and holding, thoughts of going to Law School, and leaps of improvement in my fitness. I am very thankful for the great string of healthy months of running that I have had - It almost got me to a marathon, I ran an amazing trail race this summer that showed me there are challenges that have nothing to do with time. I ran my first half marathon and 25k, completed a 25 mile training run on the roads, a four-hour trail training run, and met so many cool people along the way.

I still have things to work on - a couple being the emotional/social/commitment issues. Being a better husband and father are a couple others that need work. I need to slow life down a little and try to find some sort of spiritual connection again. Finding this connection is important to me, I still have my organized religion issues, but I know finding some sort of peace in that realm will help in other areas.

I guess this is the yin-yang moment for me. My knee is still not 100%, I have run the last two days, two miles each time out, which is nice, but it is a far cry from what I had been hoping for. I am pissed about getting injured so close to Cape Cod and Stone Cat - mostly because of all of the training I put forth, which at points were really hard, but I'll be calling the Doc tomorrow to get an appointment, and probably a subsequent X-Ray and MRI - whcih I am sure will not be covered by my trailer park insurance plan, but it is a necessary means to a solution that will help me get back to a place where I want to be: Out on the trails and roads. Yep, I know I sound like a whiney jerk, but I now remember fully how much of a role running plays in my life. It doesn't rule my life, but it certainly helps stabilize the outside things that make this whole thing 'liveable'.

Simple right? Put down the refined sugars, get the knee looked at by an orthopaedic, and get on with life.... Unfortunately, for me anyway, I tend to be my own worst enemy.

I'll have a more optimistic running based ramble later on, perhaps around Thanksgiving, as it is sort of a mile marker for me as far as accomplishments go. Perhaps I'll drop back in if I get to see a doctor sonner rather than later, but I am not holding my breath on that one. Nonetheless, I will be strapping on my knee brace and running 2 milers as long as it doesn't cause soreness or pain until I figure out how to get from two miles to two hours in good health.

I'll get there, patience I guess.


Pathfinder said...

Hey Rob,

I know what you mean about fitting into groups. I struggle with that too. I can be in a huge crowd and still feel alone.

I enjoy running with others but gain great solitude when I am alone with the eliments.

I have trouble becoming part of the clan....I don't know if I have issues or just never learned how to interact properly.

I know some people depend on the group to keep them motivated and reach their goals. I have no problem running and working toward my goals alone.

Not that I don't long for someone to run or train with because I would enjoy that. It just seems there is no one in the same place as me. No one trainning on the same level with the same goals.

I did not run in school or on any type of team so perhaps that plays a part in my reluctance to commit to a running group 100%

I shouldn't say reluctance so much as hesitance I guess....I just feel like I belong.

Part of that is the fact I end up with groups of people way out of my fitness range and I am not competative and part that I fluctuate a little with my goals.

it is a crazy world I guess...

Dan said...

No need to worry. I'm sure you have not burned any bridges. I think most of us in the trail running community are understanding individuals. You've been going through some hard times. And if some where burned, screw it. You can build new ones!

Be strong and focus on getting healthy. I need you back for those those 4 hour trail runs!

Pathfinder, you're invited too!