gift of injury...

Almost three weeks have passed since I ran (& crawled & limped) my way through 26.2 miles at the Disney marathon with an awful itb injury. I have been stretching, stretching, and stretching AND doing a lot of research about itb. I dusted off some books from the shelf & remembered one about injuries – although when I read it it before it did not hit a nerve– however this time my ‘wound’ was still fresh and I could not put the book down….”RUN – the Mind-body Method of Running by Feel” by Matt Fitzgerald.

He writes about accepting suffering and pain in injuries by looking forward – NOT inward or backward… “acceptance takes some of the sting out of suffering – knee pain is bad, but knee pain that you curse or deny is twice as bad as knee pain that you accept – and is likely to heal quicker”  The positive mind-body influence on healing is very powerful. I run because I LOVE to run – my itb injury has taken the fun out of running…and I found myself scorning my sneakers, garmin watch yada yada.  I was looking inward and asking victimizing questions like “why me?” “why did this happen?”  Enough….STOP the helplessness!  So in the spirit of running & putting one step in front of the other – I am going to ask productiveand  positive questions “what does this teach me about my body & running” ” how might this help me in the long term” in RUN BY FEEL Fitzgerald says; “…there are positive & productive questions because this comes from a place of hope, acceptance & self-empowerment. From the mind-body perspective, injuries are a case of mind over matter: if you don’t mind the injury, it doesn’t matter.”  And the quicker you ‘heal’ mentally – the quicker the body will follow.

It is a huge, flashing neon bright sign that Zak and I are approaching our ChiRunning workshop to become ChiRunning certified coaches. We signed up months ago and loved a lot of the ideas presented in ChiRunning. Some include: approach running as a holistic practice like yoga or meditation; an effortless and relaxed running form verse power running, focus on core strength and your column rather than leg strength and exertion, natural stride with minimal shoes verse heel strike with ‘heavy’ shoes….

So, in looking forward I am more excited than ever to begin the journey to improve my enjoyment of running by reducing the chances of injuries and then teaching this to fellow runners…so stay tuned…we are about to go CHI…all day…every day…our workshop is Feb 17 to feb 20, 2011 and we are officially students….books, videos and quizzes adorn my office. “Back to school’ – running school for the mind and body.  Zak always talks about ‘the story’ – ‘your story’ – mine started with a love of running, some great races, scattered small injuries, and then an injury that crippled my knee (and heart) and now the acceptance and hope to move forward to the next chapter…the CHI chapter.

Hmmmm the gift of injury beautifully wrapped in CHI satin paper & a stunning bow exuding hope, acceptance & self-empowerment.  Like Christmas morning….I cannot wait to open it and play.

Happy Trails,