Wednesday, December 22, 2010

livin' for the good Run.

recovery: -noun. restoration or return to any former and better state or condition.

It's an interesting concept: recovery. Until recently, it was just another word that pops in and out of normal vocabulary. Usually the word is in reference to being injured, or often in reference to someone recovering from an addiction. But recovery is chapter 2 of every runners manual (chapter 1 is: RUN) and is probably one of the most important aspects of life. And yes, here I go again... referencing life through my running! But I'm confident I can make sense out of my little connection.   

Check it out:  I just ran a solid 13.1 miles in 2:08:40. 2 days ago I was finally feeling strong enough, after a week, to put in a solid 4. Talk about frustration! It almost made it feel like the event I had just run was a dream. How can you only run 4 miles on a treadmill Rachel Coy?!... it's not like hitting pavement for 2+ hours or anything. Doesn't make sense.... actually, it makes complete sense. 

Here's how it works. Our bodies are built to withstand a certain amount of intensity. When you push past that level, getting out of your comfort zone, it's taking yourself to a level of shock. But this is not a bad thing, it's just a new thing. That run took my body to a level of intensity that I needed a little over a week to bounce back from. My muscles were literally in recovery from the beating I just gave them! Every runner knows that the day after a long run is the day you need to take it easy, relax, let your muscles heal and breathe. Some people need a day, some people need a week. . . I was one of those week-needers apparently! And although it has been quite frustrating to be back on my training schedule and struggle to get through 3 and 4 mile runs, I am beginning to understand that this is my body rebuilding and working back up to being able to go 13 again- hopefully MORE! Obviously, I was able to push myself to a level I didn't know was possible once, I totally can do it again. Through the process of recovery and rebuilding I know I will get back to that place; so, why wouldn't I try to get farther? I can, and I will. 2011 will be the year I run a full marathon. I'll get there. Just watch me.

Life: a series of events that we learn to adapt to, grow from, experience, etc. We fall in love, fail, succeed, become complacent, get bored, break down, make changes; you name it- life brings it. Look, I admit I cannot run 13 miles every day: some days I can run a bunch of miles, some days I can barely run 2. It happens. And seriously, these life events are just like races. You would like to think you are always gonna be prepared for what's to come on the course, but reality is you can never be 100% prepared how you will respond to any new variable that may present itself. Just stay positive. You won't succeed if you are holding onto anything negative. You won't have a good run if you have negative thoughts in your head. Fact. So whatever it is, find a way to get over it. Learn from it. Move forward. Nobody runs backwards, you run face forward- head held high. When something knocks you down in life. . . you gotta get back on the move and work your way back up. Nobody can do it for you, and it's not always gonna be comfortable. Yes, people can encourage and help you, but ultimately YOU are the one who has to get yourself going again. It's not always easy, in fact- it's never really easy. But you gotta start somewhere and you just gotta do it. Get yourself ready for the next big event. One day at a time just accept where you are at that day and time! 

Running is teaching me a lot about myself. Through this obsession I have created for myself I am discovering just how strong I am and can be. I have been through a lot this year. And although many times I felt pretty destroyed and broken down, I can always pick back up and get myself back in the game.

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