On Radio Silence (and a new goal!)
A few weeks ago, I was feeling hopeful about running a half marathon in the fall. I was following a training plan and feeling good. But then one weekend, it stopped feeling right. I don’t know if it was the muscle hour class or the trampoline park. It might have even been the overall quantity of work I had done that weekend. But my ankle started talking to me again.
In the past I would push forward and keep pushing my ankle. Instead, I quietly backed off on my training. I got quiet. I didn’t want to talk about my stuggles. Those who follow me on social media were probably sick of the #stupidankle hashtag. So I didn’t say anything. I buried myself in geneology and spent some time on the erg (because I still NEED to complete the Dog Days of Summer Challenge).
I was quiet because part of me felt like a failure. I knew I shouldn’t worry about it, but I felt like I was dropping a publicly declared goal. I was doing the right thing. I couldn’t risk my rebuilt ankle on a half marathon. But the guilt still crept in.
I stopped looking at social media because the inspirational messages made me feel like I was giving up too easily.
So here’s inspirational messages for you:
- Train hard, but not at the expense of your health.
- Inspire others… to enjoy fitness and feel good about themselves.
- Chase your dreams, but if they are out of reach find new ones.
Third message is what I’m doing now.
After about a week of brooding, I didn’t know what to do. I still wanted to work on my fitness, but I wanted to keep the ankle where it was happy. Right now, that means lower mileage, lower intensity.
On Sunday I went to the gym. I started with a 2.5 mile run, followed by about 8 miles on the bike and cooled off with 1/2 mile in the pool. I had just done a reverse triathlon! Doing a real triathlon started sounding like fun.
I haven’t done a triathlon since college (potentially since I did an Olympic distance in 2003). I don’t know if I’ll like it. But I decided, late season is a great time to try a small local sprint triathlon and see if it’s something I might want to do next year… especially if my ankle continues to prefer distances below 10k.
So Labor Day Weekend, I’ll be doing The Circle Triathlon in Ashland, New Hampshire. I can easily do the distance, I’m just interested to see if I enjoy it. To be honest, I’m actually really nervous about it. What I remember most about my last triathlon was getting kicked in the swim and being slow in the run (I don’t think I ran much back then).
After Labor Day, I should have a better idea of what my future short term goals are. Especially because I will also have seen my orthopedic surgeon in the meantime.
Any tips for the totally unprepared in a Sprint Distance Triathlon?