On Listening, or Rest is a Weapon!

Posted: January 27, 2011 in recovery, self-image, struggles, trail running, Uncategorized

Ok, it is time to get honest.  I have hurt myself in my crazy 50k training and it has inspired me to write a post on listening to my body.  I would have posted sooner, but in feeling self pity from being injured, I have “taken comfort” in foods that are not so great for me the past few nights.  It is amazing how much shame I can put myself through before I just get honest and realize that it is no big deal.  I always bounce back because my true nature is to be healthy and do what really makes me feel good.

So as part of my new and improved philosophy on training, I have trying to make it a priority to really listen to my body to give it what it needs and prevent injury.  I do not always do this perfectly, which explains my current state.

Honesty part two:  The other day I woke up to run the day after running a 16 miler (ultra marathoners suggest doing long runs back to back like this).  I had a little voice telling me, “Do not go, Natasha.  It is ok to rest.  You have never run 16 miles before.”  Well, I went anyway and, after only a mile, had to walk home because my knee hurt too bad to run.

Now I am recommitting to listening.  And, I have been resting and I will not run until my knee does not hurt… even if it takes a couple of weeks!!  The thing that I and so many of us forget is that we will not be starting from scratch if we need to rest for a while.  Our bodies actually remember the athletic, strong beings that we are and they’re back in the game in no time.

My encouragement for you is to really listen to the signs your body gives you.  Even turn off your ipod sometimes. Think about NOT distracting yourself from the workout, but rather feeling it and listening to what tweaks you may need and even when to stop (GASP! What???).  Yeah, I said it.  Sometimes we need to stop, even if that is not what our training calendar says! 🙂

Just so you can see that life does not end during an injury, I have included what Coach Rey said to Sandra and I when we came in to workout today (she just had knee surgery).  He said:


Rope climbs (from laying down to standing)

Handstand Push-ups

Ring Push-Up Side to Sides (hold a ring push-up and extend each arm one at a time, WTF!)

Thank you sir, may I have another!

  1. Heidi says:

    Distracting yourself from the workout…. that is a concept I think about often.

    On the one hand, I’ve seen plenty of people who were beginners to exercise, and just needed to get through the discomfort of the new feelings of discomfort and pain in their new workout program. Music helps get them through.

    I also know that for certain exercises, it’s fun to have energetic music to get you moving.

    But I have also tried training in silence, or with mellow music. And I have to say, there is a dynamic there that is very beneficial. Getting into the mind and listening the voice in the head and all the junk it says. It’s a very Zen activity, and helps me learn more about how my conditioned mind works so that I can do a better job at combating negative conditioned thinking.

    If we always just “tune out” with music, we miss opportunities to learn more about ourselves.

    Great post!

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