This past month, I’ve had to reevaluate who I thought I was. Whenever I’ve gone through a life change or a bump in the road, it’s both depressing and invigorating. Note, I do not get depressed nor do I suffer from that mental illness, I am using it as a describing word in this context.
Having this lingering injury, which is getting better and I have run a few times this past week, actually has broadened my horizons in other aspects. Also, I’m not going to lie, disconnecting from the vegan community and therefore spending less time on social media has given me more time to get interested in other stuff.
For example, I’ve never really been interested in organic or local food. Not to say I didn’t appreciate it, but largely I didn’t care very much where my veggies came from as long as I was eating them. Well, spending a lot of time on the bike gave me a big excuse to watch Netflix documentaries which made me aware of their importance. More on that in some other post. Not only that, but I kind of started to get interested in growing some of my own food.
This is such a shift and really surprising in my mind, because I grew up on a farm and actively admitted it was not for me. I just wasn’t interested and when I was of age, left for another job (make ice cream all summer? Sure!)
Taking a step back, I wondered if this interest was due to simply being bored or the glorification farming gets in my community. Not to bash people, but most of us don’t understand how hard farming is. We see the beautiful bounty and don’t get it that it took a lot of work and most of it sucks.
Early mornings, cold temperatures, stubborn animals, equipment that breaks, manual labor, all of it is disguised when those hardworking people show up at the farmers market smiling and offering us delicious food. Those people have a gift, and not everyone has it. Do I?
Honestly, I have no idea, but I love reading about it and can see myself out in those fields and growing healthy food. Whether that’s another unrealistic ideal or not, I’ve decided to scratch the itch and start an indoor garden in my apartment. Not only does it seem doable, it might scratch the itch enough for me to say I’m doing what I can and I’m happy with that.
I am better than before.
Coming back to this lingering injury, I’ve been able to improve myself in ways outside of running, but also have taken time to work on my imbalances, flexibility and core which I had been lacking before. It’s not that I didn’t take time to do them, it’s that I’ve changed the cool down and stretches to better serve me. I’ve made the things I’m doing serve my running rather than wearing me down.
For example, my job is very physical, so any strength training or heavy lifting I’ve done before serves no purpose except it makes me sore and ripe for injury. My job is my lifting, my gym work is about form, balance, mobility and strengthening ancillary muscles. Taking more time to relax or do some easy cross training appeases my need for movement and makes me happy.
I may not be at the same level yet, but in many ways, I am better than before.