> Fear > Doubt
By: Tricia Oxford, 2/12/2018
The last three years have been… something. I moved 1000 miles from VA Beach back to Bloomington. I started a Master’s program. I signed up for Boston. A month later, I got injured trying to run too many miles. I missed numerous exams while chiropractors, physical therapists and surgeons fought over my prognosis only to avoid surgery completely and be told to “self-heal”. I “yogged” Boston having solely trained for it on a bike. I met my future husband (140 days!!). I moved to Illinois. I graduated a Master’s program. I moved with said future husband another 1000 miles in the opposite direction to CO. I applied to 60+ jobs and got hired zero times. I climbed 14ers. I started my own business. Less than a month later, got engaged. We totaled the Subaru on NYE 2017. WTF hasn’t happened in the last three years. That might be the shorter list.
I have been a competitive runner since age nine (19 years of competing. HOLY SHITAKE MUSHROOMS, I’m just now realizing how long that’s been). I am your cliché runner – running has been my outlet, my escape, my “drug” if you will. I have found the runner’s high. I enjoy the pounding of my feet – on any surface. I enjoy the speed. I relish the distance. I love every bit of it.
So needless to say, in the midst of all of the above, when it was taken away from me, my world went upside down. I didn’t know life without it. From the 400m to the marathon, running was my snitch. 2017 was the first year in 18 years that I did not compete in ONE SINGLE RACE (no, I do not count the local Turkey Trot Thanksgiving morning). For the first bit I had a Master’s program to keep me busy and of course this wonderful man in my life who never ceases to encourage me and lift me up. He introduced me to biking so that new adventure and form of exertion kept my itch at bay for a minute.
However, I still didn’t feel the same as before injury. I wondered if there would ever be anything I could put my heart and soul into that would fill the running void.
There was/is/never will be.
So finally, after a year and half of “race less” days in CO, I met this amazingly positive and inspirational person. Natalie has more reasons than most to just cave and let the negativity take over, but she doesn’t. Ever. So, in honor of our 31 year old brothers and all of those young expecting fathers out there, we are running ~31 miles (a 50k) in April.
The point of all of the above being, I’m back. I. AM. BACK.
I’ve certainly felt better. I’ve never been this slow. But yesterday we ran the farthest I’ve run in 2 years. Natalie and I admitted to one another that we’d been nervous all day before the run (though we’ve run further than this how many times?), my stomach was a riot and there were at least 80mph winds against us the entire way out (okay, perhaps a bit of an exaggeration, but it sure wasn’t calm). We planned on 15, hit just under 12 and ended the day with ice baths (clad with cheezits of course). We’ve decided that being injured would not benefit anyone so one of our most important goals of this journey is to remain injury free and be able to COMPLETE the race. So we hit three miles less than we were supposed to – we’re going to take life as it comes and stop trying to make happen what we WANT to happen or what we think SHOULD happen. End of story. We’ll go longer next week. That’s that.
Minus your typical long run aches, I was fine during the run, am fine today and plan on staying that way.
I am > the fears I’ve had of injury for the past 25 months. I am > the doubt I’ve had toward returning to the adventures of running. Here I come running world!