I have been remiss about blogging the last several days. I’ve been remiss about running, too — when I was walking home tonight, I realized that I forgot my keys when I left that morning. I spent the time I planned running sitting on my step waiting for Tony to come home and let me in.
I’m not going to beat myself up too much — I walked two miles and went to yoga class tonight — but I still feel a little guilt. It’s the marathon training that was ingrained in me.
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about failure. Not just how it relates to running but life in general. There was a study — and I can’t remember if I have already blogged about it, so forgive me if I have — but the study was about how some people learn faster than others. The researchers concluded that the ones who learned faster were the ones who were more willing to fail — and learn from those mistakes.
A friend who is running again after recovering from an injury asked me to give her some words of encouragement. She started tracking her pace again and she was disappointed that it was not what it used to be.
Running and failure is a little different, because failure in running — injury — is not the kind of thing you can just bounce back from. You learn, sure, but it requires so much patience. An injury can set you back months, years. There must be easier ways to learn.
Still. Accept injuries as lessons. And the lesson reinforces all the things that running teaches you: patience. Persistence. Endurance. Understanding, of your body, definitely, but also willingness to accept the things that are out of your control. Fortitude.
Pace is not a lesson. It is an outcome. So do not feel badly when your pace is so far behind after a long pause in running, or an injury. As you get better at all those other things, pace will come with it.
So I failed to run today. But tomorrow is a new day, and I will make my workout count tomorrow. And, I assure you, I won’t forget my keys.