Suck It Up, Cupcake

Yesterday, I was wallowing in self-pity. Closer to tears than I have been in a long time. I felt my goal of running the half marathon I have been training for was slipping through my fingers and I hated everything about that.

I wrote out all the thoughts bouncing in my head yesterday, and I realized as I re-read that blog post that I talked about the 10 mile run a bit, and how much I love that distance.

It reminded me how much I loved that run on Saturday, even with the pain, and how proud I was of myself for finishing those 10 mile, still running, even through the pain, because I loved what I was doing.

Then, this morning a teammate from the training team responded to my piteous plea for a bit of hope that all wasn’t lost, and she basically said she was in the same boat, and she hoped to see me out there on 11/10 because she sure would be, whether her knee cooperated or not.

The message rang though, probably not the way she thought it would, but through a phrase I use on myself on a semi-regular basis when the going gets tough: Suck it up, Cupcake.

Another comment left here on the blog yesterday reminded me of something I knew, but had forgotten in my self-pity. There are tools out there (like tape!) to help you get through an injury without lying on your ass, getting even fatter and slower.

I made myself an action plan to get through the next 5 days, and then re-evaluate. Foam roll at least twice a day. Rest during the week days. Ice every 4 hours at work (speaking of which…brb). Get up and walk around at least once an hour (otherwise, it stiffens up so much I limp around). ITB stretches in an empty conference room on my lunch hour. Buy sports tape and bone up on taping for ITB pain. Today, I forgot to bring my yoga mat (for those lunch hour stretches) and a pillow to elevate my leg with me. I will fix that tomorrow.

Saturday morning, when the alarm goes off at 6am, I will get up and lace up my trainers, just like I did last Saturday and go run. If it is too awful, I will repeat more of this week’s efforts, and do it all over again next week. And just keep trying.

In my daily life, I tend to fly by the seat of my pants, but in a mental crisis like the one I experienced yesterday, I require a plan of action; without action, I sink into despair and sloth. Today, I might not go for my midweek run, but you better believe I am icing my knee right now, will apply more Voltaren gel in a while (yay for Rx topical anti-inflammatories), and get sports tape either on my lunch hour or tonight if I have to go to an athletic store to get it.

I am not throwing in the towel yet. And I will not be stupid either. But sometimes you can’t let pain be the excuse that makes you stop. Sometimes, you have to work through it and with it. I am going to do everything I know how to do to get my knee to cooperate. And then I will suck it up and run anyway when it doesn’t. But if it grows into a more serious threat to my long-term goals, then I have until November 1 to decide if I am being forced to defer my race until 2013.

But I don’t think that is how this will end.

Suck it up and run, Cupcake.

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