Don't worry big guy - it's not you! (thought I'd better start with that!)
I have been thinking about this blog post for a while now, and I know that if I was a good blogger I would be telling you all about our recent caravan weekends (which were truly fabulous), some bits about what's been going on with life at home (the usual mayhem!) and maybe something about some forthcoming decorating plans...but enough of all that, what I really want to talk about is me!....("typical!" says The Big Guy)
So, my question is; what happens when you fall out of love with something that was important to you, something that you consider to be a major part of who you are and how you think about yourself?
I have thought of myself as a runner for 9 years now. When Child 1 was born it was the activity that I started to help me to recover a body that vaguely reminded me of what I had before children, it gave me some time just for me at a time when I felt I was never alone with my thoughts, so yeah, basically it restored my sanity. Since then I have been running every week without fail (barring illness), I have competed in lots of races, half marathons, London Marathon and various other small races. These events have helped to give me confidence, focus and motivation, they have made me feel good about myself.....that is, until now.
Over the years, despite regular practice I have started to slow down, particularly over long distances, and races have felt like a lot more effort. This year, my amazing and very supportive brother-in-law became my running buddy as a way for him to keep fit, and for me to speed up keeping up with him, and yet my most recent race time was not what I had hoped it would be, and I crossed the line feeling disappointed with myself and like I had let myself (and him) down.
Since that day, and for the first time in 9 years I haven't wanted to put my trainers on, and when I have hit my running trails the familiar buzz has eluded me. I have lost my running confidence, I don't even want to enter a race...I have fallen out of love!
So, I ask myself, what happens after you have fallen out of love?
I guess that there are two options; When you fall out of love with a person it is usual to just stop seeing them and to extract yourself from that relationship however painful that is - is that what happens to me and running now? Is this the time to start seeing someone else (swimming or cycling perhaps?) Or on the other hand do I work on our relationship, do I spend time with running to remember what I once felt, do I try some new type of running to bring that excitement back into our relationship?
I don't know the answer to those questions, and I know that, if I let myself, I could quite easily never put my trainers on again, and very quietly forget that I ever was a runner, but I am not sure that that is who I am or who I want to be. I am sure that I don't want to be the one who gives up, I don't think that I could feel proud of who I am if I did that.
Perhaps what this is then, is a temporary separation, we're on "a break" as Ross from Friends would call it, let's hope that by my next blog post we've made up again - watch this space.....