I keep saying that to myself over and over again when I head out for a run or look at my time after a run. Coming back from an injury is hard and not just from the physical aspect. I’m talking more mental.
Physically, it is hard to come back. I’m not in running shape and I proved that with my first attempt at a tempo run and 10 mile long run. I could not get close to my half marathon goal pace during that tempo run and my legs were angry with me after that 10 miles.
I’ve been on a bit of a roller coaster during this time. There are moments when I’m just excited to be out running again and then I get discouraged that I’m not able to run like I used to. I have been struggling with reminding myself not to compare my current pace with my former feeling awesome peak pace prior to the injury. It’s hard.
Then one of those things happened that can knock some sense into you.
There’s a woman I met through an online running group that reminded me about perspective. She’s in her mid-thirties and has a muscular disorder and additional health issues involving her heart. She’s going through a pretty rough time right now.
During the spring and summer she would do many 5k and 10k races with her walker and was starting to build up her strength to do a half marathon. Then things took a turn for the worse. She ended up in the hospital for a bit and was told that doing these races would most likely never be an option for her going forward.
While she was trying to regain her strength to walk her family got her a special push cart and a good friend of hers has been pushing her through these races.
Most days she has a hard time just standing up while I’m upset because I’m a bit slower.
She is just so excited to be participating in a race and I’m upset that my race times aren’t what they used to be.
I need to suck it up and be happy that I can comeback from my injury and remember that with time and hard work I can get back to where I used to be. If for some reason I won’t be able to get back to my peak pace I need to ease up on myself and keep things in perspective because there are plenty of people who can’t do what I can.