A series of nasty, pesky health issues (from February through, well, last week) has really put a dent in my fitness and my plans for the season. It looks like my entry into short-track racing may be delayed, and I may have to reassess (and scale back) how many races I can actually attempt this year. Granted, racing is not my life, only a part of it -- but it's a meaningful part and I feel frustrated by the combination of health and weather issues that have combined to keep me from being ready to race.
How do you deal with stuff like this? How do you maintain perspective and keep from snarling at your partner/spouse? How do you deal with your body when you feel like it's plotting against you? What do you do in the meantime that gives you time and space to recover from illness (or, in my case, illnesses)?
I went through this last year. If you check out my blog posts from all of '09, you'll see what kind of rollercoaster season I had. I used it as a springboard. All I know is that this year I came out of the gate stronger than I've ever been in my life and I haven't looked back.
It's easy to say now, but if I could go back and do one thing differently, I would have let last year go when I realized my training plan was shot, which happened very early. I would rather have committed to having fun with the year, and not beat myself up so badly, second guessing everything & searching for all kinds of reasons why things weren't working out right.
Day by day. Your result at the race is only a small part of the experience. Be good to yourself, don't beat yourself up about a lack of training. Get out and ride/race when you can, enjoy doing what you're doing when you can't.
I've been recovering from a torn ACL and broken fibula since February and it's opened my eyes to the imbalances of my life. I've had to let go of the need to be fast, fit, and healthy and had to embrace the healing process. My Physical Therapist has told me I shouldn't race this season, but I'm just taking it day by day. I think I'll be racing by October or November.
Don't focus so much on how you think the future will pan out. You can't know. Day by day.
I went out to the course trial for our short-track series last night and even though I was still weak, I felt well enough to ride about a third of the course, including some goofy technical stuff in the single-track section, before I needed to stop. I am hopeful that another week of rest and limited bike commuting will help and that I will be able to race again before too long.
@ Plummer: my issues (particularly, living with Crohn's and taking up racing at a rather late age) demand that I stay aware of my body on a micro-level every day, so I am mostly able to NOT compare myself to the hordes of fit young MEN these scenes tend to be populated with. That said, a flare-up can still be a cause for frustration and I appreciate your reminder that we do this for fun.
@ Booksy: All the best with your recovery! Joints can be tough and slow to heal. (I know.) Keep at it and keep stretching. An occasional offering to the Physical Therapy gods can't hurt, either...