"Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think." A.A. Milne

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Holy Overtraining Batman!!

Lately I have been crabby, grouchy, tired, out of sorts, unable to sleep, and in general, a malcontent. I seriously did not have a clue what was going on. I have thought hard about all the facets of my life to see what was going on with me. I finally figured out that my diet was trashed. We have been eating out far too much and even though I made the "healthier" choices, they were not nearly as healthy as when we eat at home. But I have been too tired, stressed, and crazy to cook like that. It was too much!

Then I started to think, I really have been very anxious and stressed lately. There is no reason for me to be that way. Life is good. I don't really have alot to worry about. So what was going on? Perhaps I was developing an anxiety disorder? Maybe I was going to need meds? What was I going to do? The more anxious I was, the more the kids, surprise surprise, were acting out resulting in momma being even more tightly wound. Seriously, not a recipe for success and happiness. In fact, we are spinning out of control quickly.

It couldn't be depression. I was still really productive. I am doing 3 runs a week, two of average length and run huge mondo run. I was kicking butt at my insanely intense two boot camp classes. In addition, I was making the effort to get the kids to the park, cleaning the house, keeping up with the shopping, starting spring cleaning, blah, blah, blah.

(Okay, okay, so it is completely obvious NOW. Hindsight is great but when you are in the midst of a maelstrom, you just hold on for dear life.)

I love my husband. He is an amazing man. He is warm, kind, loving, and supportive. But he is also very courageous. Have you ever had the courage to tell someone completely fixated on a goal something they did not want to hear, someone who is so passionate, so zealous to reach a goal that they become single focused to the point of craziness? My wonderful husband said to me, "Honey, I think you have to look at the very real possibility that you are overtraining." Nooooo!!! Not that. But he was right.

It has been too much. I am exhausted and spent. I was not allowing myself to recover so each day it was a little worse. Each day I woke up worse off then the day before. Right now I am feeling a bit ran over by a truck. But it is getting better.

This is another lesson in moderation. It appears to be a very hard lesson for me to learn. Life hasmany parts that come together and form our existence holistically. If one thing is out of whack, it all quickly goes out of whack. A few little decisions can shoot us careening down an unwanted path. It often takes longer than we would like and more damage than we are comfortable with before we make the necessary corrections.

Now let's talk about the damage. This is the vulnerable, authentic, and humiliating part. Due to my black and white thinking, my refusal to see the bigger picture have been failing my children and forcing them to deal with a momma they did not deserve. I have been crabby, impatient, even intolerant. I have become irriated, even angry over things that I know to be simply age appropriate behaviors. According to my husband, I held back in action but in thought I was thinking hateful things. And my poor, sensitive babies responded in kind. The worse I became, the more they acted out, and that just made me more irritated. I could cry over how unloving and ungracious I have acted. These have not been my best momma moments but I have definately learned some hard lessons. What it comes down to is what affects me affects them and I am the adult so I better get my act together.

The very realization of the true problem lifted a huge burden off my shoulders. I cancelled today and tomorrow's workout. I went to the good grocery store and bought the food we should be eating. I have spent time today prepping and cooking and will spend more time tomorrow. Mainly, I have spent time with my precious babies. We have laughed, sang, and cuddled. They have helped me cook and clean up. It has been a wonderful day.

As far as the half marathon goes, oh it is still on like Donkey Kong but modified. I am dropping the two boot camp classes and I will replace it with one day of good solid lifting. I will be aware from now on to the possibility of changing things around to accomodate my life and my family.

Looking back, the irritation with my children should have been a major warning that something was really wrong. If you knew me personally you would know that in general I am not necessarily a patient person and I am not one to suffer fools gladly. I am quick, (Isn't that a pleasant way to put it?) However, for some bizarre reason completely unknown and not understood by me, I have a crazy amount of patience and tolerance for my children. Huge messes that would send most mommas nutty are simply endearing to me. Hey, we can clean up together and that will be fun. Childish and age appropraite antics usually catch me trying to hide my smile because I know that they really do need to be corrected and redirected but they are so dang cute and funny! These ugly feelings surrounding my beautiful babies were completely unnatural to me. I was growing more uncomfortable in my skin and with life every day.

I guess the point of this story is to be open to really analyzing your life. Think hard and deep about what is going on with you. Think about your stresses, anxieties, the general tone of your life and find out if a couple of changes could improve it. In the past I have found that major issues could often be overcome by relatively simple and small changes either in habits, mindset, or both.

For me, it is never fun to be humbled but it is often necessary. I am not happy about what happened but I am so grateful that events transpired in a manner that headed off something I might regret long term. Moderation is such a difficult concept for me. Just more proof that I will continue to be a student in this life.

May you have a blessed and peaceful day. May you make decisions and changes that will bring joy, love, and laughter to you and those you love.

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