Survival Mode

The countdown is on. In less than one month, thousands of runners will lace up their shoes and hit the tri-county corridor to complete the Whistlestop. Since giving birth 13-months ago, I assumed I’d be among them. In April, I completed a warm-up half-marathon despite a polar vortex and countless other obstacles. I was unstoppable when I crossed that finish line. I set new goals and had every intention of setting a new personal best this fall.

The path to success seemed so obvious. Lose weight. Train hard. Show-up. Achieve goal. I started strong. As someone who thrives on organized chaos, my goals seemed manageable. I updated my to do list factoring in my new goals and kept plugging ahead. Then, life happened.

I’m not sure how I went from organized chaos to overwhelmed mess. Somewhere between a foot injury in mid-July to typing this today, I lost my way. My diet derailed. My training became non-existent. My immediate to-do list trumped finding time to get out and run. Tomorrow never happened. By mid-August, I acknowledged the half-marathon needed to be a 10K. Then, life happened again. This time, an unexpected lingering illness knocked my desire to run. My body shut down. It became easier to make excuses than push through and run. At some point, the obvious path to success became an unbearable burden.

Last week, I acknowledged a 10K wasn’t in my cards on October 11. My consolation goal wasn’t achievable. In many respects, running rejected me. Truth be told, I’m disappointed. But, I’m picking myself up and moving on.

I’m not sure where I go from here. This week, I put on my running shoes, cranked up my Ipod and headed out with no goal other than to run until I didn’t feel like running anymore. When I was tired, I stopped. I walked. I took in the fresh fall air and acknowledged that some things are beyond my control. I caught my breath, I ran some more. It felt amazing. I don’t know if this will equate to lining up for another race at some point. I do know that the pressure of a race right now won’t motivate me. If anything, it’ll break me. So for now, I’ll run for fun until it isn’t fun anymore. If I find myself longing to line up at a starting line, I’ll put together a plan and do it. I’ve done it before. I can do it again. But, it needs to be on my terms and my timeline.

Meantime, I’m returning back to the basics. First on that list, get back on track. Block off time to enjoy all that fall has to offer. Hike. Take pictures. Enjoy some family time at home and on the road. Say no to new freelance. Utilize my vacation. Plant garlic. Fertilize my garden. Keep breathing. And from there, who knows where life will take the Probst family.

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6 thoughts on “Survival Mode

  1. Beth, you might think this is strange but as I read this incredibly authentic and well-written blog, I smiled for you. What I saw when I read this was not defeat, but honesty, integrity, self-awareness, courage, determination, and self-love and acceptance. Disappointed yep – I totally get that. But strength in knowing what will work for you. In restarting the way you need to restart and in keeping yourself in the equation, even and especially when it looks different than the picture you originally envisioned. You and this blog inspire me. Just so ya know. And you are running again, for you, for fun, the way you want and need to. There is a path that will reveal itself in time, I believe. For now, it seems to me you are exactly where you are supposed to be. Thanks for sharing this. Godspeed as you run for fun and enjoy fall. All the best,
    Lori

  2. Sounds like a girl in charge, and happy! You have a multi-dimensional life! A toddler, a husband, a job, freelancing, family obligations, commitments! Running and preparing for competitive events is another job-obviously one you don’t need or want right now! Remember to breathe and trust your gut. I think you’ve got this! 🙂

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