Tuesday mornings are my favourite. I don’t start work until 10 or 11am, so I take advantage of the late start by heading out to the trails in Bragg Creek. I watch the sun rise as I cruise along the path and I’m filled with gratitude for this amazing life that I have. I’m thankful for the trails, the sunrise, the crisp morning breeze, my fitness; by the time I get back to my car I feel like the luckiest person in the world.
Normally I do these runs on my own, but this past week I was joined by my friend Trevor. We did a loop which included Sugar Mama and Stick-it – two unoffical but well-established trails. I found myself thanking the mountain bikers for being so industrious with their free time. I don’t know of any other group of trail users who put as much time and effort into the building/maintenance of trails as they do.
I’m working on getting some leg speed back after a summer of long, slow running so we mixed up the run by adding in some 3-5 minute intervals. Trevor is a faster runner than me, but he let me set the pace for the intervals. I could hear his elevated breathing during the intervals and I was thankful that I’d reached a level of fitness where I could push him a little bit.
It was during the end of the workout, when we were jogging along easily, that it happened. I tripped on a rock and went sliding along the trail, skinning my elbow and knee. I didn’t think much of the fall at the time and I popped right back up with the intention to keep running. The problem was, I couldn’t run. I kept trying to shake off the fall, but when I tried to run my head would feel woozy. A few minutes later I stopped to look at my knee and I realized what the issue was. My knee was split open. It was obvious I would need stitches, as the gash seemed to go all the way to the bone.
Trevor was great – he stayed calm and made sure I got back to the trailhead in one piece.. He gave me some water, and I ate one of the Oreos that was in my pocket. The wooziness subsided and by the time we got back to the parking lot I was confident I’d be able to drive back home in one piece.
To shorten up this long story, I now have 22 stitches in my knee and a 3-4wk layoff from trail running. I’ll likely be able to do some easy road running in the next 1-2 weeks, I just need to avoid any deep knee bends.
I find it really easy to feel sorry for myself when I can’t run. I don’t handle inactivity well and I become prone to mood swings. In an effort to avoid a pity party I am going to embrace the spirit of gratitude that comes to me so easily while I’m running. Each day I will post another aspect of my life which I am thankful for.
Today I am thankful for my husband Matt. Matt takes care of me when I am injured or tired, even when I’m acting a little crazy. He understands and supports this bizarre sport, knowing that running brings me happiness. He celebrates my successes and pushes me to be a better person.
What are you thankful for?