Sunday, May 11, 2014

Inner demons

I can go a long time where everything is fine and I'm not caught up in my head, but I seem to eventually get to a point where it gets too loud and I have a bit of a break down. Unfortunately this week was that week. In reality, everything was fine. I was running well, work is going well, things with Scott are going great - but I was spending more and more time fretting over what I know are inconsequential things.

I think I'm pretty level headed and rational but I cannot give myself a break on my appearance. I started feeling all insecure on Tuesday when I run with arguably some of the fastest runners in Indianapolis. It's not that I think I should be running with them - I know that I am just working on myself and my abilities, but I for some reason felt particularly "unathletic" looking compared with the group. Wednesday I made Scott take a picture of me (I usually abhor pictures, but I am actively trying to fix my issues with my self-perception) after what felt like a slow run but turned out to be much quicker than I expected. I should've felt happy and proud, but I spent the rest of the day and most of Thursday mentally nitpicking it and ultimately asked for him to take it off Instagram. Who does that?!

This anxiety about not looking like a runner kept building and building in my head until I kind of dissolved into a crying mess on Friday night. Scott tries to help me see things objectively, but I still was feeling like total crap, and actually starting to feel very depressed when I woke up Saturday to go trail running. I couldn't really keep it together and I could feel myself sinking into actual depression akin to last summer and fall. I really really didn't want to be back there. I didn't want to put Scott through that. I didn't want it to stop me from running, and more broadly, living. I sat in the car for a while after Scott went out to the trails trying to muster up some motivation to get out. Eventually I did. Mostly I think I told myself I was already in running clothes and I needed to earn breakfast.

The trails were so incredibly green and beautiful and interesting that I kind of forgot everything I was freaking out about. It was almost like "oh, hey human - here is this beautiful expanse of nature that is here to run through and you are worrying about how you look in running shorts. That's ridiculous." It started raining softly, then much stronger as I finished up running and it kind of made me feel renewed. Not spiritually or anything, god no, but it reminded me of what is real and what I just make up in my head.

After we reconvened at the car I was in a considerably better mood and we went to find a friend that was running a 50 miler in the same park. Through those interactions with friends I realized that the reasons that I like people have nothing at all to do with what they look like, so I'm not sure why I still hold myself to these other extreme standards. I can't say I'm completely confident in my appearance or anything now, but I do feel like I dug myself out of the pit I was crawling into this week. Which is a small success. So, hopefully more of those to come.

No comments

Post a Comment