I cannot tell a lie…

I’m in a deep, dark, depression. Surprised? Well, don’t be. It’s true. I guess it proves that I’m human and as much as running pulled me out of my first depression, it is slowly pulling me back into a new one.

Can I find the exact source of blame? I’m not quite certain. It could very well be the long Minnesota winter. The last race I ran was the Polar Dash on the first of the year. Races are always exciting and invigorating for me. Perhaps I need to sign up for another race?

Last year I trained hard for Grandma’s Marathon and a few old injuries popped up. One has stuck with me much of the year, and that is the sciatica. I battled it through the summer but since I wasn’t really training for anything, I tried not to let it bother me. And I also cut back on my running. Fast forward to September and the Boston Marathon draw. I did qualify. Should I go for it? What about the cost of the race? The travel? The anticipation? The training? To be honest, I still wasn’t near 100% and wasn’t certain exactly what was wrong with me yet. But, fearing that Grandma’s was a fluke, I felt like I just had to try for Boston.

Making it in was both a blessing and a curse. And believing that I truly AM a remarkable runner just to qualify at my age, made me continue to run despite the discomfort in my left leg. I believe I didn’t really want to know what was wrong with me now, because it might jeopardize my trip to Boston. And I already committed.

So, I got a masseuse. And she is golden! And I started stretching. And I started rolling out the piriformis muscle. And I started hanging in the inversion chair. All of which have helped, but not healed. I’m not getting any worse, but I don’t believe I’m getting any better.

And, I’ve gained weight. About 6 pounds since Grandma’s. That is a lot for little ol’ me. Either the sciatica is bothered more by the extra weight or it is causing the extra weight.

So, after spending way too much time guessing, I finally went to see my doctor. I love my doctor. I call him Dr. Redford. He is the best looking doctor I know. And he is just a peach. He is quite aware at how much I love to run. And he commiserates with me as a former runner himself. A few X-Rays, and the great news that I have an awesome looking spine with no compression issues tells him that a consult with the local spine and nerve center will have an answer and a few moves I can do to relieve the discomfort.

I trust him. And I hope he is right. My first appointment is tomorrow!

So is it the Minnesota winter? Is it the chronic discomfort? Is it the weight gain? Perhaps it is a combination of all three. And with Hal’s 12 week Boston Bound program starting this Monday, I’m hoping for a miracle. Although, I have already decided to run Boston regardless…it just may not be for a PR. Just for the thrill. And I can live with that!

I cannot tell a lie…

Have you ever been depressed? Has running helped you from falling into depression? 

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6 Responses to I cannot tell a lie…

  1. Kim J says:

    It is not something I talk about often but I was on Zoloft a few years back for anxiety and depression. It was a terrible time and my weight was out of control. I went off the meds after I took a new position at work but anxiety still would creep up on me from time to time. I started running back in June and it has done wonders for anxiety and depression. If I feel it creeping in I just need to run and I have a clear head plus a better perspective. Overall I am just way happier now.
    I hope you get your leg figured out and you feel better soon. I know how hard it is to tackle those feelings you are dealing with now. Prayers for your speedy recovery.

  2. Michele says:

    I go through a winter funk every year, and every year it gets a little worse. I don’t have access to a treadmill so my only option is the indoor track at the high school, which half the time is super hot to run in and the other half the time is taken up by high schoolers who don’t understand what “on your left” means. So then I usually don’t run as much, which makes me sad, which makes me eat and the cycle goes on. There was one winter about 5 years ago that I could barely make it out of bed before 9am, it didn’t matter what time I went to bed. I did have my vitamind D level checked, and I was low, so that could have been part of it. Then March comes along and it magically gets better. Plus, I hate running indoors and my work schedule has me working during the daylight hours most of the time. I could go on and on about how much I hate this time of year and how depressed it makes me. As a runner, I totally understand what you are talking about.

    • A Running Chick says:

      Thank you, Michele. It is comments like yours that make me realize I’m not as crazy as I think I might be. ;) Hugs to you!

  3. Without running I think both my depression and anxiety would be out of control. I finally gave in and started taking a low dose of medication again (lower than the doc even prescribed being stubborn like I am). The natural endorphins and the time away from stressors help so much. I also do believe living out here in the desert with all of the sun helps a lot. You are definitely not alone in this and I hope your sciatica gets better, running Boston is a dream going for just the experience is awesome. Good luck I’m praying for you!

  4. Emerging Runner says:

    I’m sorry that you are feeling so low and I hope these feeling will quickly pass. I have a friend who suffered symptoms of depression while living in New England. He moved to Miami for business and soon had a marked improvement in mood and outlook. He moved back north a couple of years later but invested in special lighting for his home. That has prevented the symptoms from reoccurring. Might be worth a try. I think Brookstone sells light boxes made for similarly affected people.

Thank you for your comments!


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