“if it’s the worst thing that happens to me today, I’ve had a pretty good day”. how I’m turning my injury into a positive.

I got injured April 16th.  I’m still not fully recovered and if we’re being real here, it blows.  It’s extremely frustrating to be sidetracked day in and day out and really not be able to do something that really makes you happy, but it comes with the territory.  Rumor has it anywhere between 65-80% of runners will get injured at some point.  Sign me up.  I am part of the 65-80% yall.  And it’s the pits.

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I get down on myself a lot about my injury actually.  Wondering if doing simple things like bouncing around with my dog or running a lap with my Girls on the Run girls will set me even farther back.  It’s not easy to watch everyone else carelessly run around when you can’t see the finish line of your injury and wonder if you’ve even progressed at all.  I also wonder often if there is an end in sight that doesn’t involve surgery and each day that goes by with limited improvement makes me fear it even more.

But it’s about perspective.  Today in my workout, I bench pressed more than I ever have.  Last year, I couldn’t even lift up the bar on my own.  My deadlifts increased by ten pounds last week.  I did a pull-up today.  I’m making improvements, they’re just not improvements I’m familiar with yet.

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My dad used to always say when we were growing up, “If that’s the worst thing that happens to me today, I had a pretty good day”.  He would say this if someone made a tiny error that slightly inconvenienced him like if a store clerk dropped one of his items or someone forgot to print a receipt.  Always minute things because he could see the bigger picture.

I’ve had to remind myself of this quote a couple of times recently.  My injury is a setback, but there are so many worse things that could plague me in this world besides my ankle aching every so often.  If that little pain is the worst thing that happens to me on any given day, I had a great day and I need to remember that.

Using this outlook in other areas can help as well.  Say you binged on a little too much ice cream one night, if that’s the worst thing that happened to you all day, don’t beat yourself up about it because, my God, you had a good day then.  Or maybe you only ran 4 miles instead of 6 because you were too tired.  That is still an awesome accomplishment and at the end of the day, you did something awesome.

Perspective can set the tone for success.  I’m progressing positively even if my goals have changed.

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-sj

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