I signed up to run/jog/walk a half marathon in October.
I did this because I realized I had gained weight and needed a tangible, measurable goal with solid unmovable milestones in order to motivate myself.
Also because I was feeling depressed and stir crazy and was getting bitter about the weight I had gained.
I gained weight in part because I spent two weeks doing nothing but sitting on my rear end and eating. (This also fed the depression and stir crazy stuff)
I was sitting on my rear end because while in London I managed to aggravate a knee injury resulting in a diagnosis of Bursitis and doctor’s orders to stay off my feet. Which meant no going to the gym, no walking to work, etc.
Which was particularly annoying because while in London I spent my time walking like crazy but also eating a LOT of foods high in fat and calories resulting in weight gain.
The original knee injury came from a fall.
Today’s Story of Kay Adventure aka Things That Make You Glad You Aren’t Me: The Fall Before the Marathon.
Let me set the stage. It was mere days before the big fundraiser that I had been working round the clock to promote and organize. Tension at the office was palpable and nerves were frayed.
Without going into too many details, a coworker snapped at me (in front of a group of volunteers) and I was horribly embarrassed. She had put me in my “just an admin” place and my ego was bruised. Apparently, the phrase “just an admin” is the red flag that makes the bull in my heart want to destroy things. Or cry.
(So condescending considering that I didn’t just happen to fail at life and then become an admin because I had no other options. I chose this work because I like helping people, I like being in the support role, I like being organized etc. Also, I do more than the normal admin in my current role. A LOT more. Anyway… back to the story)
So there I was, fighting back stupid tears, trying to just hold on and make it through a few more hours/days until the whole stressful thing would be over. It was past lunch time and I was hungry, but more than that, I needed a break. From the office, from other people, just… a break. All I wanted to do was walk down to Subway and eat a sandwich in the sunshine while reading my book for a bit… to escape.
One more thing you should know. I was wearing a dress. A shortish flippy skirt sort of dress with a cute little cardigan and a fun and perfectly matched scarf. In other words, I had started the day feeling confident, sexy, on top of the world etc. This was the perfect outfit in which to enjoy the sunshine and my book.
However, my escape was not to be. Instead I ended up going to lunch with my boss. Don’t get me wrong, I normally really like my boss and have enjoyed our lunches both before this day and afterwards. But on this day, I didn’t WANT to go to lunch with my boss. I wanted some “me” time. However, one of the things about bosses is that they can ask you to do things in a way that makes it hard to say no. (Sometimes even a “no thank you” won’t work. Trust me.)
So off we went.
Imagine for a moment the highly stung version of me who went to lunch that day. Take a moment to feel the incessant prickle of tears behind my eyes as I try to make casual conversation. There hadn’t been a moment to collect my thoughts or take a breath.. it had been nonstop. And now, the ever present fear that a private lunch with the boss was a portent of doom, of discipline or some sort of negative something.
We got out of the car and walked toward the curb and of course that is where I fell. To be accurate, I tripped. Over a curb. A bright red curb. A bright red curb that was about 3 inches high, 2 inches wide, and wasn’t an actual step… the pavement on both sides of the damn curb was the same level… there was just this random bit of barrier along the perimeter of the outside eating area. A barrier that I either thought was a step up or maybe my heel caught the back side of it as I stepped over it. I don’t actually know.
The next thing I did know, I was on my knees and then my hip. My glasses and sunglasses had flown away and I was momentarily blinded. My knees were bloody. Oh, and my skirt was up, over my waist showing all the lunching patrons my delightfully non-sexy panties.
Had I known a show was in my future that day, I might have worn something more exciting. But no. I was wearing plain nude little bikini panties, which probably made it look like I wasn’t wearing anything at all.
To my utter shame, the tears I had been holding back could be held back no longer and I cried. A bit for the pain, a bit from the surprise, mainly though because of the embarrassment. I don’t think I have fallen quite like that in years and years… and I am pretty sure I was 13 the last time I had skinned knees.
The tut tuttting and mothering of my boss made it both better and worse.
Eventually we got me up off the ground, the knees were washed off, we had lunch and I tried to pretend that I wasn’t mortified beyond belief.
I refused to fill out a workers comp claim form (after all I was on my lunch, it was my fault etc) and I waited for the swelling and the disgusting scabs on my knees to go away.
And then a week later while walking up and down the hundreds of stairs that are part and parcel to the London Underground system I became aware of a throbbing, sharp pain with every bend. It got so bad that I couldn’t put any weight on my leg.
I had to rest it. I had to ice it. I had to take it easy. I was eventually able to walk on it, but stairs were a constant form of mind numbing pain. I refused to let it damper our trip too much and probably made it slightly worse which in turn led me to the doctor when we got back getting a prescription for a knee brace, pain pills, and strict orders to stay off it for two full weeks.
Which all led to the weight gain, the slight depression, and the decision that I needed to do something slightly extreme.
Like sign up to do a half marathon.
Of course I can’t throw myself into training because I still have to baby the knee just a bit.
But I have taken steps (hee!) toward my goal. I bough a bathroom scale. I bought actual running shoes. I went for a “how out of shape walk am I?” walk where I determined that I am pretty out of shape but not a lost cause and got a sunburn. And last night I walked home for the first time in over a month.
It felt great.
October… here I come!
Details about the half marathon I will be participating in can be found here.