Archive for July, 2013

Steps Towards Recovery

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on July 24, 2013 by activerunner

Being ill or injured sucks.  I think all serious injuries, whether a broken arm to a broken heart, affect the mind more than the actual physical body.  I’m still anemic and although I have felt progression towards recovery, I’m not progressing fast enough.  The thing with Anemia is that it’s not an injury or illness that people can see, it’s in my blood.  So, when I go out for a run, in my mind, there is no reason why I can’t do what I have always been able to.  Yet, I’m slow and can’t go as far.  It’s annoying.

I hold high expectations for my self and often think that I should be “this” and  should have accomplished “that” by now, despite my illness, injury, or weakness.  Why am I not where I should be?  You’ll drive yourself crazy thinking like this because you make yourself into a constant disappointment.  Life is progressive.  And we have all made significant progress.  But every once in a while, weakness, injury, or illness slow us down.   all you can do is work through it a step at a time.  Even if hope of recovery is slim or down right impossible. Even if baby steps are all that’s manageable.  Those steps may be considered small to the healthy and uninjured, but they may be the most difficult steps ever taken.   Pushing forward through difficulty defines progress and without progress, healing cannot take place.

So yes injuries, illnesses, and weaknesses are difficult and you should be annoyed by them.  But, by forcing yourself forward, progress will be made.  I can honestly say I am making progress,  with anemia anyway, even though my grandma can probably run faster than me right now.  but I will pass her up, eventually, as long as I don’t quit.  There is no reason why I can’t do what I have always been able to. I can overcome difficulty.

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Perception

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on July 7, 2013 by activerunner

An individual’s personal perception of life is unlike anyone else’s.  This individual has her own way of looking at and seeing things.  She has her own opinions, attitudes, and challenges and may go through the same challenges as others, but will perceive and react differently.  A life enveloping catastrophe to her, may be a mere bump in the road to another.  Her attitude towards specific occurences becomes self fulfilling.

variances in opinion are all due to perception.  Those who don’t see running as something worthwhile are obviously not looking at it through my eyes.  But challenges can influence and change perception.   I have recently been diagnosed with Anemia, making running difficult and not so pleasant.  Anemia is a condition in which there is not enough iron in the blood.  Iron is important because It produces healthy red blood cells in the body, which transport oxygen to organs.  Because running is an aerobic exercise, oxygen is kind of important. I mean, oxygen is kind of important period!  So, because of this health problem I have had to force myself to finish workouts that would otherwise be relatively simple.

My perception of running has changed.  I despise pushing myself through pain that I shouldn’t feel during a short, simple run.  I get angry at myself, feeling that I should be at a certain level, but am falling short.  So I didn’t run today.  I did nothing, unless you count mowing the lawn as a workout.  Instead I read a book called Unbroken, which actually helped me see more clearly.  I read all morning long about Louie Zamperini, who was infact a runner, a world record runner to be exact, and a WWII survivor.  He was drafted into the war, and became a B-24 Air Force Bomber.  But he, along with his crew crashed in the ocean.  Only three members of the crew survived the crash and were forced to wait for days on a raft, in the Ocean, for rescue.  Louie was among those three.  The two other men with him were Mac and Phil.

Louie, while starving and drifting in the Ocean, remembered an article about a survivor in their same situation.  The article had reported that the crew members who didn’t survive went insane from dehydration and had wild hallucinations. So Louie and Phil decided they needed to keep their minds sharp.  So, they quizzed each other and discussed memories, life events, and the future.  They taught one another lyrics to songs and did everything they could to keep their minds in tact.  Mac, however did not participate much and many times went through mini freak out sessions.

“though all three men faced the same hardship, their differing perceptions of it appeared to be shaping their fates.  Louie and Phil’s hope displaced their fear and inspired them to work toward their survival, and each success renewed their physical and emotional vigor.  mac’s resignation seemed to paralyze him, and the less he participated in their efforts to survive, the more he slipped.  though he did the least, as the days passed, it was he who faded the most.  Louie and Phil’s optimism, and Mac’s hopelessness, were becoming self-fulfilling.”

That quote was taken from the book, Unbroken.  It illustrates how critical perception is, and not just with running.  Those who preceive pain as a moment to overcome, overcome and look back at a bump in the road.  Others let pain follow them, allowing it to envelope their lives.  Envelopment is hard to get away from.