A few nights ago on #runchat, a question was posed to the tune of asking for advice you would give to a runner friend who is injured. Timely, right? One of my favorite answers someone gave, and it was really several someone’s, was to prepare oneself for going stir-crazy and/or getting cabin fever when you have to rest. That is definitely something that struck a chord with me.

On the one hand, I have a lot of interests and things I’ve always really wanted to do and never felt like I had the time or money to do them. Learn new languages, learn to play the guitar, go back to taking voice lessons (I used to be a halfway decent singer when I was singing all the time in high school choir and private voice lessons), learn to knit, learn to cook, and even little small projects like organizing my room better, hanging things on the wall that have been shoved in a corner since I moved in, doing a little bit of feng shui.

On the other hand, I really, really, really want to run.

Right now I'd be content to just be able to run around my block...
Right now I’d be content to just be able to run around my block…

So I’m making my list (and checking it twice… I know, I hate me too) of things I want to do with this “rest” time, short term and long term. What I’ve learned from this injury is that the next time around, I need to devote more of my cross training time to strength and balance, not just low-impact cardio and the occasional yoga and Body Pump class. BP and yoga are still something I want to do, for sure, but I think part of what led me to not do my strength-training as much as I should have been was the lack of variety. I was only doing Pump or yoga, and it got stale.

Anyway, short term, meaning, while I can’t do much of any kind of working out at all:

  • Learn to knit. My library has a knitting circle once a week and my roommate’s mom is a pro, competitive knitter! I’m gonna get set up with some beginner books and some easy thing to make and hopefully be able to make Christmas gifts this year instead of spending money on buying them.
  • Learn my way around some marketing software I’m as yet unfamiliar with. In grad school we mainly studied concepts of communications, marketing, and outreach and engagement. When it comes to being actually useful and indispensable in the working market, I need to stay on top of various software and online applications. I want to learn my way around HubSpot, Google Analytics, and basically every CRM out there. I want to “attend” webinars to keep me fresh, network, and learn everything I can to really contribute to my organization. I really want, but really, I really need to earn a promotion at work and I’m willing to go after it.
  • Continue learning to cook. Go to farmers markets and use the produce, experiment with it, be proud of making my own food. Eat healthy at my own hands.
  • Read as many books as possible, as well as enlightening and mind-opening magazine articles I would otherwise skim.
  • Keep my room organized. It’s a pretty small area, so when it’s cluttered it doesn’t help me clear my mind and relax exactly.
  • Revisit my training plans for my spring 2015 marathon and in general. Rework to include less running and more cross-training, like swimming, Pilates, TRX, and PiYo.
  • Work my arms at the gym. Use this time to build some baby biceps!
  • Volunteer – at races, at the women’s shelter down the street from me, at the animal shelter I used to work at, wherever I can find the opportunity to volunteer my time and make the world a better place. Even if it’s just by handing a runner a cup of water and giving her some words of encouragement. Small acts of kindness.
  • Freelance research. This kind of goes above to the magazine articles, but other kinds of research as well. In grad school I had to focus pretty narrowly on the concepts of communications practice, but I want to learn about other countries, learn more specifically about the history of cultural issues, be as informed about the world around me as possible. Understand people and their reasons better.
  • Pray more. Go back to church. Prayer has been getting me through this frustrating period big time.
No joke, this is what my mom's bible fell open to when I stopped by her house to cry.
No joke, this is what my mom’s bible fell open to when I stopped by her house to cry.

In the long term?

  • Find a Pilates studio and go regularly.
  • Get an annual pool pass and go at least once a week.
  • Be thankful for every pain-free step I take.
  • Get a promotion and kick ass.
Who run this motha?
Who run this motha?
  • Pay off my credit card.
  • Eventually move out of the DC area.

I have my sights set on a specific program my organization has that is exactly my mission when I set out to work for said organization. I want to eventually manage one of its locations. I have grown up in the DC area my whole life and never, ever fit in.

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And really I may not “fit in” anywhere, but I do know I don’t like the DC area culture. There are wonderful individuals here, but for one, the dating scene is a crapshoot for someone like me, and two, I’m sick of hearing about people’s jobs on the Hill. (Mainly talking about men here again.) I’m sick of how moneyed this area is, how cold people are and how cold it makes me in response. I’m sick of going out on a Saturday night and finding that everyone looks the same – either done up to the 9’s with $60 blowout hairdos for a night at the bars. And then there are the cynic responses to that, which is to go to the other extreme. Can’t I just be me? Somewhere oddly in the middle? Is this a me problem?

Non-DC readers, what is your city like? Would I like it? I like people who are down to earth and warm and open and kind. I like people who are educated but not snobby, worldly but not condescending, and people who are kind without reserving the kindness for white people with money. So where in the world should Nevie San Diego go? I’m guessing not actually San Diego. But I could be wrong. Enlighten me!

I know, people are assholes everywhere you go, and people are awesome everywhere you go. It’s just the more cities I visit the more I’m aware that DC has its own vibe and it’s not a vibe I vibe with.

I mean in the end I will go where my job takes me. If it means staying in DC, and becoming a reclusive cat lady, fine. But ugh.

Maybe I should make my bed into a tent with Christmas lights. At least there it'll be safe from assholes and cozy to boot.
Maybe I should make my bed into a tent with Christmas lights. At least there it’ll be safe from assholes and cozy to boot.

This got off-topic.

I went to the gym tonight to do my PT. I pushed it really hard on the recumbent bike for 10 minutes, until my knee muscles were aching delightfully and I had worked up a good sweat. I haven’t sweat since my 18-miler when injury struck. I missed getting in the shower and feeling like I actually needed one.

No, seriously, where do you live and would I like your city?

On a scale of $1-$100, how much money would you place on my doing the Marine Corps Marathon in 2 1/2 weeks after all and finishing? (Disclaimer: my hip is feeling much better, better than it has since the first sign of the injury, however, I haven’t seen my PT again since our first session and won’t until Thursday.) 

What’s your favorite thing to do when you’re not working out?

What’s the best book you’ve read recently?

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