I try to live my life as a disciplined person. I have certain habits I work to maintain, I'm disciplined about my running, and try to be disciplined in my work. I always think of discipline as more, harder, faster. Working harder and longer, pushing yourself past your limits, going to that place of being uncomfortable and challenged.
This week, I discovered the discipline of restraint. It took me much longer to get back to full health post-virus than I imagined - and truthfully, I'm still not eating 100% normally for fear of my body revolting. As soon as my body gave an inch of recovery, I wanted to take a mile in jumping back into my normal routine. I was desperate to go for a run again, especially since I have my final two qualifying races this weekend to gain entry into the 2018 NYC Marathon. After last year's injury and coming so close - two races away, in fact - and not meeting my long-awaited goal of making this year's marathon, I am chomping at the bit to get these under my belt.
But - I needed a different kind of discipline this week to keep me from racing out of the gate and doing too much too soon, like I did on Friday night which led to a terrible setback...and then another setback on Monday morning.
I felt better - and then waited. Rested. Did the gentlest 15-minute YogaGlo possible instead of the strength-building workout I really wanted. I wanted so badly to be better again, I wasn't giving myself the chance to get better again.
I'm thrilled to report that my self-imposed short leash has worked, and although absolutely wiped out from a 5-class day, I'm feeling so much better and stronger and like my normal self again. I'm more than ready to tackle a busy weekend - races, family, a Moana-themed birthday party at Karma Kids, and hopefully - fingers crossed - a little wine?
Discipline is not always about pushing yourself. Sometimes it's about knowing when to hold yourself back - and sometimes that's even harder to do.