Saturday, December 17, 2011

Running is Mental | Where Have I Heard That Before?

To say that the last two weeks have been a life changer, would be an understatement.

For the first time in my life, I FEEL my age. I might not look middle-aged, but I sure FEEL it.

As I was slowly gaining my strength back (ER Doctor told me it could take 2 or 3 weeks to be back where I was pre RnRLV) I was hit with another blow.

My body finally decided to unleash muscle spasms and tightness. When I went to the Chiropractor, I believed I had slept in a REALLY bad position. Then, I receive the news, that I never expected - my entire upper back, neck and right arm muscles have tightened up and all is typical of severe shaking and vomiting.  You got to me kidding me. 

I couldn't figure it out - WHY now? Well, simply put - the body will take care of what it needs to, at that moment. Obviously, my body needed to rehydrate, rest and lots of other good stuff. Now, the rest of the story is unfolding - in my body.

I will say that was the straw that broke the camel's back in my head.

I drove home in tears, thinking "when is this stupid nightmare going to end? How long will my body revolt against me?"

I will have to be in intensive PT for at least 2 weeks. Memories go back to my running related injury in March. It was demoralizing, to say the least and here I am again. Many don't understand that feeling of feeling defeated and "why did this happen?" - until you have been there, you won't get it.

Yet, my youngest son put it in perspective for me

"momma, when you hurt your hip and thought you would never run - you showed everyone how wrong they were. You became a faster runner! You will be better soon - don't give up"

In that moment, I remembered the words that we all hear - "running is 99% mental"

Mental was the key element that got me to the Finish line and to be able to find my husband at RnRLV.  Until you are in the same situation as I was - don't be so quick to judge how or why I walked the entire course.  You truly never know how your body and mind will act, until you have been there. 

Mental was the only thing that keeps me going the past 2 weeks. I will admit, my attitude isn't the best and I find myself in a pity party of one - but, I know this too will pass.

I never imagined I would end my racing year this way. But, as I look at my wall of medals, awards and PR's - I also didn't think it be so rich in great things. One year ago, I was setting my sights on running 11 races. By year's end, I will have competed in 20+ (although has not posted all my races yet, but I am working on that!)

As each day, I build up my strength - and now, will be in upper body PT - I am grateful that I have a healthy and vibrant body to heal.

I believe I will be ready to make a return to the Half Distance on January 7th at Running From an Angel - - that will truly be my redemption run for my body and my mind. 

I am looking forward to a great 2012, how about you?

How have you overcome tough physical and mental barriers? Please share.

(c) C. Ragsdale 2011
Celebrate Your Finish,

Charlene L. Ragsdale - Las Vegas, NV
Certified Sports Nutritionist, Running Coach & Public Speaker
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