Thursday, August 16, 2012

quitting running

For a year.

Sometimes I think about what I want to say before I blog it. I've thought about how to explain why I'm taking a year away from running, but didn't find a tidy paragraph in the mess. The simple reason is: my body needs a rest. I injured my knee in February and brutalized it further by pretending it was better than it was, keeping my Running to Nowhere treadmill routine. My physical therapist had no answers as to what (pinpoint it!) was really wrong and I understand; without an MRI, it can be tricky to guess at the workings of a knee. I'll see what he says when I return to Kuwait. Maybe I'll ask what Mr. MRI has to say.

Also, I just got tired of keeping running. For years running has been very important to me. It still is. But parallel to this knee injury was an idea that I've had for awhile: I need to know I'm okay without running. Running shaped too much of my day and mood. Perhaps I shouldn't write in past tense. I still think about running. I still hope I get to run again, for long lazy miles. I hope this isn't a Big Quit but just a short little break in routine to recalibrate my heart and mind, decide what and who should really be shaping my day and mood.

Perhaps it helps that actually running would likely further damage or reinjure whatever mystery injury I have in my knee. It's easier to pause running when it's physically irresponsible to do it. But it also feels a little hopeless and sad to wonder if I'll get back an activity I really enjoy.

So I'm at the start of a year of not running and wondering where I might go. I have to go somewhere. Right? I can't take a year away from running and not experience something, realize something, do something. So sometimes I am hopeful for what I may learn through this pause, how my body will strengthen and align anew. But other times I'd rather just take a long run.

3 comments:

christy said...

I feel that. I'm doing without an instrument again, and sometimes I feel as if I'm just going to explode without the stress relief. It has helped me realize how much I enjoyed the music itself, and challenges me to engage in worship int his season.

Angela and David said...

I think sometimes my body just needs me to quit for a while as well but I'm not quite there yet. And you asked if I thought PT was making me stronger, and I can't say it is. But all the other types of training I've been doing has been making me stronger. I don't feel any less fit not running.

Clare said...

i took 2010 off. and 2011. and 2012. really hoping 2013 is my year to get back to it in whatever capacity i can. i liked your thought that "It's easier to pause running when it's physically irresponsible to do it." wish all our bodies would cooperate more!