We’ve all had bad workout sessions. But I don’t think we ever really regret them. At least we made the effort. I just had the worst workout of my life. And I’m debating about the regret part.
An aging (or “ageless” – thank you Robin Legat) athlete is what I am. It’s my identity. And it’s something I intend to keep. One of the memes on my wall is “Sometimes I feel like giving up, then I remember I have a lot of mother fu@^ers to prove wrong.” That’s a significant motivating factor for me. I can’t not be an athlete. I can’t lose that. It’s what I have to prove who I am to the people who didn’t think I’d amount to anything.
Reality is seriously hard to contend with. If you know me, if I’m about anything, I’m about reality! But when it comes to self-reflection, I’m a little more stubborn than I expect my readers to be. I don’t want to be old. I don’t want to be slower. I don’t want smaller upper arm circumference. I don’t want injuries. I literally cannot handle belly fat. I won’t let (too many) others (especially in my age group) beat me.
I’m still working out in our “Gymrage” (gym + garage) because of the government mandated shut down that made exercise with other people illegal. Is it the heat, or is it something else that’s triggering tears after every set? My mind and my muscles want to work hard to build some size worth talking about, but something hijacked the blood in my veins, causing me to struggle way, way beyond reasonable expectations.
I’ve had a knee injury for 4 ½ years that I’ve maintained a level of function I’m ok with. And then today, I lost it with a completely otherwise uneventful move. It is no longer runnable, squattable, or lungeable without further damage.
It was a really bad workout.
It’s 100 degrees. Does oxygen become gelatin in 100 degrees? or is my thyroid arguing with me? or is my plant-based diet not enough protein? or is my age really negatively correlated to the amount of intensity I want to give? Not running is not ok with me!
Assessing and knowing which battle I’m fighting is paramount to a win. A gravity problem requires a different mindset shift than an anchor problem (See Anchors Away). Neither mean completely letting go of the person I want to be. I just need to be ok with the pivot. Which sucks, but it’s the only road to victory.
My knee is broken, so I look down at my new FitBar egg beater toy and think, well now’s the time to master that one. I’ll be more intentional about protein grams. I must find a safer workout space. And it’s time I buck-up to the possibility an ortho doc has enough competence to help me.
I recognize it’s another blog about not giving up. I don’t think it’s just about me.