The fall

That lower-case ‘f’ is on purpose. We’re not talking a season here, we’re talking an experience. A not-awesome experience.

On a quick decision, I signed up for a half marathon next July. Awesome. No problem. I’m out of shape, but this is something I’ve done before, so it feels like a doable goal, something to stretch for. Go, me!

So, I get my training plan out and decide to go for it. Yay! Today’s assignment: 2.5 easy miles. 👍🏻

Late in mile two, I faced a three-inch difference between two sidewalk sections and lost. Lost badly.

Picture it: me, full speed, (okay, I’m no speed demon, but my full speed), then falling, falling forward, tumbling, rolling onto my head. Full stop.

Lessons learned immediately:

  • As one who is clumsy, it is not uncommon for me to trip and potentially fall forward. However, in this circumstance I was unable to catch myself and prevent a fall.
  • Apparently I have a built-in tuck and roll capability of which I was previously unaware.
  • It hurt like a mother.

As I was lying on the sidewalk, I thought to myself, “What are we going to do next?” Options: 1) call it, end the run, head home 2) finish. A quick inspection of my person revealed that the only damage was to my right hand. With my legs intact, I opted for option two – finish.

Any runner will tell you that there are times in which you have to dig deep in order to continue going forward. This was a dig unlike anything I had done before. I found myself crying as I ran home. Not because of the pain, not because of the embarrassment, but because I had realized that I was capable, in running, of truly hurting myself. I’m no stranger to aching muscles or joints after a long run, but this is the first impact injury I’ve ever had. It was scary, but it was also a cementing of a reality.

Takeaways so far:

    Pay better attention to the sidewalks.
    Know yourself. If I had done any injury to my legs, the outcome would have been different. Because I was still capable of finishing, I knew it was important for me to do so. For me.
    Self care. Not just the wrist splint for my hand, but also the time I’m taking today to rest physically and emotionally.
    Grit to stick to it.
    Hope for better runs to come.

Here’s hoping your journey is smooth, but when it’s not, that you’ll have what you need to keep on going.


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