I don’t want to run.
It’s bad, I know. I talk INCESSANTLY about running and how much I love it. I talk about the special socks that I buy, and the bright colored workout clothes that I wear. I blab on and on about how wonderful it makes me feel, but the truth is, this week I haven’t wanted to do it.
Last weekend I was supposed to have a long run, but I went to a festival, enjoyed pizza at happy hour, and cooked out at a barbecue instead. I kept telling myself that I didn’t want to get sweaty before __________ (and then I’d fill in the blank). The reality is, I just haven’t felt like getting off of the couch and doing it.
Partly, it’s because I am frustrated with my IT band. I went to the orthopedist again last week. My pain was nonexistent after my first run last week, but then it came back after my Wednesday run. It wasn’t terrible, and I do think that strength training is helping to build up my muscles, but it’s still frustrating for them to say “we’re not sure what’s causing it.” The doctor suggested maybe a torn lateral meniscus instead of IT band problems, and now I have to get an MRI to make sure.
I appreciated him drawing me a picture of the leg bones and muscles and explaining to me what MIGHT be wrong. But all I wanted in that moment was not a good bedside manner. What I wanted was a real answer.
I’m starting to doubt myself. Can I run this half marathon? I’m not sure. I’ve decided that, for better or for worse, I am going to Niagara Falls and running the 10K, but more and more I am thinking of abandoning my half marathon goal and putting it off until next season. I don’t know if I’ll be strong enough by January to run it if I can’t even get good training miles in without pain.
But then there’s another small voice in my head. It’s the one that whispers to me to stay in bed because it’s warmer and I need the rest. It’s the voice that reminds me how cold I’ll feel walking outside at 6AM for a run now that the weather is turning cooler. That voice tells me that maybe this injury is a blessing in disguise, and maybe I didn’t want to work this hard anyway. After all, I’m not the fastest, not the best…I just get out there and give it what I have. I fight with the voice that tells me it’s not good enough.
Yet somehow, regardless of how much I DON’T want to run, regardless of the unpleasant side effects, like bloody toes, bloated stomach, achy legs and feet…there is something about it that I just can’t give up. I am still so FREAKING amazed that I am where I am because I know where I came from. And I just can’t hang up my running shoes and let that go to waste.
So, I’m chalking it up to a bad week (or maybe a bad couple of months). I hope I’m right.
What do you do when you have a bad running week? Do you ever get in a running slump where you just don’t want to do it? How do you motivate yourself?