On june 24th 2007, I finished my first race in 10 months! What a long hiatus that was. It was a sprint distance triathlon in San Diego. I was still recovering from my hip injury, but under my physical therapist’s permission, I went for it. At that time, after many months of lack of training and racing, I felt like I was losing my passion, or my healthy mindset. I wanted to just get out of the rut of being and feeling injured and defeated. Thanks to my attention to nutrition and lifestyle (mentioned previously), my health had generally improved by then.
Despite my fear of the hip pain coming back, I decided to go slowly and finish the race….I envisioned myself getting magically healed after this race, for some strange reason. I wanted to declare the end of my injuries and pain through this race. I went with my gut feeling…took my time, just enjoyed being back in the racing world. I think I was the slowest I’ve ever been, due to the very minimal level of training (this time it was because of my injury, not blaming on my illness), and just being cautious overall – but I really didn’t care. I finished!!! It felt great, or even better because this was my first completed race in 10 months, after having to fold because of a flare-up on race day morning in October.
Not only that – what I declared and envisioned came true. While my hip and back were tight from the hilly rides and run (just not used to the running), I felt NO PAIN. It was almost strange how I didn’t feel any pain at all, because the joint pain was still there the day before.
Believe in your mind. Believe how your mind works, how it can make you or break you. I am a believer now. It is the most amazing thing.
If I can do this, you can do MORE. I am still in disbelief sometimes that I am a triathlete. Slow or fast, short or long distance, once you cross the finish line of a triathlon race, you ARE a triathlete, and NOBODY can take that away from you. Every day, it is the memory of those moments, that joy in my heart, that helps me get up and get moving. On bad days, I think about that moment and promise myself that I’ll do it again soon. It keeps me healthy – both mind and body.