‘Cause I’m being taken over by fear

One of the reasons I decided to kind of start over with my blog was because I felt, to a large extent, that I wasn’t completely honest about a lot of things in the previous incarnation of the blog.  It’s not that I lied, it’s just that I wasn’t entirely forthright.  For example, I’ve been up front about dealing with depression and (a lot of) anxiety; I’ve been straightforward about having a hard time with my body image and the decisions I make about nutrition; I think it’s sort of obvious if you keep up with my blog that I have a hard time with the way I deal mentally with training and not training.

My way of trying to deal with these issues was, previously, to say, “Here’s what I’m going to do!” and lay out some ridiculously overambitious exciting plan in the hopes that all the problems would be solved because all it would really take to solve them was more resolve and deeper commitment.  I think the truth is that I have resolve and commitment, but the issues run a little deeper and need more than just a face lift.  I also think that my constant efforts to fix things in a very superficial way (and my subsequent failures to do so) has led to a lot of frustration, and has made me feel like I’ve failed in a pretty significant way.  The plan now is to try and be a bit more realistic about things, a bit more honest about things, and, hopefully, address them in a way that ends up being a bit more successful.

Running has gotten hard, and I don’t mean physically.  I love running as much as ever (that is to say a lot), but I often struggle for a good long time when I try to get myself to do it.  I’ve been doing a lot of yoga, which is great, but when I sit back and look at my week, when I see yoga I see failure to go running.  I would like to go running right now, for example, and when I think about it, it seems largely pleasant in my head.  Then the closer I get to going, the more panicked I become.  The panic is far from concrete and I couldn’t possibly tell you why I feel the way I do.  I just feel terrified, and lately, more often that not, that feeling keeps me inside the house.  The weather today is mild and I haven’t run outside for what feels like an eternity.  But for reasons I don’t understand, I am glued to my chair, completely paralyzed.

My goal this week is to run 10 miles–just ten!  Not even all at the same time!  It remains to be seen whether I’ll even be able to do it.  I’m not really looking for pity or even sympathy, I just think it’s important to be able to say something about what I’m going through and be up front about it.  Maybe someone else feels the same way?  Or has in the past?  If so, how do you get past it?  Do you just put one foot in front of the other, forcing yourself to go until it eventually gets as easy as it used to be?

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4 comments

  1. I know exactly what you’re talking about with that panic. Not so much with running, but I get it with all sorts of other things. I have the most success with a sort of ‘fake it till you make it’ attempt. That is to say, I would act as if I had no fear. I’m not sure if that really makes any sense. Sorry if it doesn’t. I’m just not sure how else to explain it at the moment.

    It usually works well enough to get me started doing whatever it is I’m panicked about. By that time, I either have no choice but to finish, or I find that it’s really not so bad and I can handle it.

    Best of luck with your 10 miles!

  2. It might be good just to look at the goals that you have. I don’t see doing yoga as really failing running. Yoga is still a way to get your body moving. If running is your passion, it will come back in due time. Maybe some time just to focus on yourself and allieving stress might actually help you enjoy running again.

  3. I love your frankness. I really respect your honesty and “putting it all out there”. I felt much the way you did during some parts of college. I can’t recall why or what got me out of it but it was terrifying and frustrating and awful. I think it just eventually ended. I think it’s great that you’re talking about it and I also think it’s wonderful that you’re doing the tri (I’m reading your posts backward…obviously). The most important thing is to keep looking forward and staying positive. Stop focusing on your various so-called “failures”. Try to learn something from them and move on.

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