It’s been a rough weekend and I’ve had a lot of negative thoughts weighing me down. I set out Friday morning for a long run (my last before the marathon in two short weeks) and it was a big fat FAIL. Baseball-bat-to-the-knee pain stopped me at mile 6. This morning I went for a bike ride where – in spite of feeling pretty strong the whole ride – my average speed was the slowest I’ve seen (off the trainer) in at least six months. Waaaaah. Wasn’t it just a month ago that I was in awesome shape? I was running fast and riding hard, but now I feel like every time I turn around I’m slower and weaker than I was just the day before.
When I got off my bike, I had a big grey cloud over my head. I actually mean that literally. It was a cloudy morning and blissfully cool, so I decided to tackle some of the yard work that I’ve let slide all (hot) summer long. I changed into gardening clothes and grabbed a bucket to start pulling weeds. It was unbelievable how overgrown my small front yard was! We have a flagstone path from the street to the front door and there were thousands of weeds in between the stones. The flowerbeds were choking with weeds and the flowers sorely needed deadheading and trimming.
Weeding is such a thankless task - which is why I procrastinate doing it - but the house looks so much better when it’s done. I ended up spending almost three hours doing yardwork. My mind wandered a lot while I was working, but came back frequently to my current training troubles.
While I was picking the insidious clover out from between the flagstones, I kept walking down that dark mental path of self-doubt: what if I can’t run the marathon? What if my training doesn’t ever pull out of this slump?
As I cut back the ice plant that had taken over most of the front flowerbed, I tried to figure out where my current problems started. My training has been “off” for a lot of the summer, since I started my job. How much longer until I adjust to this schedule?
As I worked on the largest flowerbed, I started thinking about blogging, pondering how to write about the weekend without being such a Debbie Downer (no such luck, huh?). I was nearing the end of my task and was getting hungry, so my mind was jumping from one thought to the next pretty rapidly, when I spotted a HUGE weed behind the oleander bush. Seriously, this weed was almost as tall as me and it did not want to come out of the ground. For some reason, as I was pulling on that thing, I was thinking about Rock Star Tri's Star Wars Quote of the Week about two weeks ago. “Luke: I don’t believe it. Yoda: That is why you fail.” My next unbidden thought was, “I don’t believe I can run a fast marathon.” And just like that – YOINK! – the giant weed came out of the ground. As I stood there with that big ugly sucker in my hand, I realized that I couldn’t have made up a better metaphor if I’d tried. It’s time to get that horrible weed-like thought out of my head!