When I saw the question what does running mean to me I struggled. Right now I’m injured and I haven’t run for *does mental calculation and counting on hands*
gazillion eight or nine weeks. It seems like forever so thinking about running, the running I’m not able to do and the potential races I’m missing makes me incredibly sad. What I should do is flip this and look at it from an injured runner’s perspective.
Running is like a good friend. Running has been there for me through good times and bad, the highs and the lows. Running was there to help me through the rough time I had trying to support my husband through his depression. Running was there after my children were born to help me through my occasional baby blues, discover the ‘old’ me and put the ‘mum’ me to one side for about an hour. Running was there when I required a much needed confidence boost. At times running has helped my own mental health and that is why I think it means so much.
Running has given me moments of joy and elation. Running has made me leave my comfort zone and has lead me to travel the UK to find myself outside comfort and in that special zone that only runners know about. I am grateful for what running has brought me. So not running right now is like gradually losing contact with someone I have been close to for many years and it’s hard. I feel like a bad friend of running and that soon I won’t be able to refer to myself as a runner any more.
To try and stay close to running I have attempted to maintain contact through material things: buying running gifts that I cannot use right now. But that just makes me feel a bit empty. It’s just running stuff and it is not a substitute. I watch people running on the TV on the odd occasion it may be on but this pulls at my heart strings too. Buying running magazines seems to be difficult, as if I’m watching my friend enjoy something that I cannot be part of.
But then there are the blogs of other runners which seem different. Keeping in touch with running by reading about what other people are up to, their running journeys and their highs and lows. Their races, their training and sadly their injuries too. I have discovered that blogs can help me keep in touch with running through other runners. Even though it occasionally makes me want to tear my hair out and cry with frustration, it also makes me want to cheer people on to their well deserved goals too.
Blogging about running myself has also helped me document achievements and the unfortunate depths of injury. As I continue I hope to document more of my training runs as I return so I can go back and reflect and adapt and change as running needs me to. Because sometimes all relationships need work.
I have been running for a long time and running means so much to me: my solace, my sanity, my health, my fitness but blogging is a new addition to it that I think might be a nice fit. I don’t think I have many readers but the comments I have had have always been supportive and at times given a much needed boost. A bit like my Nike Air Pegasus that are gathering dust in the cupboard *sob*. I don’t want this injury to be my last memory of running and I don’t want my blog to be injury focussed so I hope, really hope, that I can be back with my friend running soon.