During my yoga class yesterday, my teacher asked us, “What is your body telling you today?” While she asks this same question frequently, I usually don’t listen to her or my body. I go through class doing what I feel I should do, rather than what my body tells me I can do.
But yesterday was different.
Yesterday, I listened to the story that my legs and feet were telling me. They reminded me of my falling over during a box jump two months ago and showed me the scars of my determination to connect five double unders consecutively. My feet whispered that they haven’t had a break in a long time, specifically pointing out the black toenail I have from a race in December.
The most important stories my legs told me yesterday, though, came from the arch and ankle of my right foot. Last Sunday, my ankle gave me stern warning to stop by seizing in pain while I was doing food prep. My arch and calf joined the fray on Monday and by Wednesday, I had a knot in my calf the size of a golf ball. Hours of stretches and massage by me, Hunter and my massage therapist followed and by Friday, the knot was gone. I set out on a 3-mile run on Sunday to determine how I was feeling. I only made it two-thirds of a mile before my ankle screamed at me to stop.
This all led me to yoga class yesterday, where I dejectedly sat on my mat, heard what my legs were telling me, and set my intention: It will be okay.
Some of you may recall that a year ago, I dropped out of the Big Sur Marathon and made it my goal to finish the 21-Miler this year. The race is on Sunday--I think you can probably guess where this is going. I went to the doctor earlier this evening and was told that I can’t run for at least two weeks and need to complete a round of physical therapy over the next four weeks.
In short: although I’ve spent the last four months of my life devoted to training for the race, I can’t run Big Sur this weekend.
Obviously, I’m disappointed and sad, but I know it’s for the best. I’ll lose Big Sur, likely the Santa Barbara Wine Country Half in May, and possibly the Mountains2Beach Half on Memorial Day weekend (I had already downgraded from the full I was training for two weeks ago). However, as sad as this makes me now, it’s nowhere close to how devastated I would be if this injury made it so I can’t run the Dopey Challenge in January. After all, while I’ve been working towards Big Sur for months, I’ve been working towards the Dopey Challenge for years.
I bought this bracelet a few weeks ago from Etsy to where during Big Sur to remind me of the things I’ve overcome since last year’s race. When it finally got here yesterday, it became clear that this bracelet wasn’t just a reminder of how far I’ve come, but that I can keep going. I can keep going through the Spin classes I’ll have to force myself to in the coming weeks. I can bear modifying every CrossFit workout that’s programmed for the next month. I survive doing running workouts on an elliptical. My boss said it best today when I told her: “I hope you won’t stop. You get so much out of running.”
I want to close this out by saying thanks to everyone who supported me in this journey over the past year. I know I’ve been absent on social media for the past few months and don’t post much, but trust me, I see what you say and it motivates me. Thank you for the advice, the guidance, the motivation and the kindness. Thank you to those who have listened me whine when I was sore, those who forced me to train through a historically rainy winter, and those who have accepted the fact that I now have donut leggings that I will wear around the office.