Running Anyway

I struggle with new things. I love to learn, but that amateur phase just socks me in the self-esteem every time. Between that and a solid dose of impostor syndrome, it can be hard to break through the paralyzing anxiety. It doesn’t have to be this way, and running reminds me of that on every sweaty conclusion.

About a month ago I came down with a nasty chest cold. I was coughing up phlegm and feeling miserable. I couldn’t run. I tried after a week and it was brutal and demoralizing. I waited another week and I still struggled. I keep doing my usual loop, but each Time I hit a wall and it was all I could do to walk home.

Walking like that I’m always feeling some small shame, as if every other runner is looking at me as a failure. Sometimes I use that shame to power my run, to make me push farther. That’s a petty motivation. I should be running for the joy of it. Taking satisfaction not in how I look to others, but in how the agony is accomplishment for myself.

I’m learning a lesson here. It is okay to be on the learning curve. We are all there, whether we admit it or not, learning from our failures and weakness. So there I was, running stronger than I have in a month and it felt good. I was running a distance that I never expected and that people are often surprised by. Every time I let myself be a beginner, I built the foundation for stronger runs.

That is the lesson that I need to take to my writing. It is okay to suck at something. Persevering and getting better is just part of the process. It’s a hard lesson for me. Too many times in my life I have given up just because I wasn’t any good at something on my first try.

It’s about time that I got over myself and started writing some new drafts. I have manuscripts that I’ve written in the last couple of years that need to be massaged into something that doesn’t suck, but the only way that I can actually get that done is to delve back into my amateurish writing.

Alright, I have shit to do. Tomorrow is another run.