I took up jogging because I didn’t think waking up at the crack of dawn was sad enough. I felt inadequate being just one of a selected few, who voluntarily go to the gym every weekday before the birds start chirping. I simply wanted more. Running in the afternoon completed the look I was going for: Desperate and pathetic.
The truth is, I entered a race. This implied training was necessary. No, I didn’t lose a bet. And no, it wasn’t a dare. Why then? Because I am a raving lunatic. Who else would choose to run for 10 km non-stop in the middle of nowhere?
One thing you must know about me is that I never do anything half-arsed. I will endevour to finish everything I start with so much energy and vigor, that my sweat and determination would be considered a prohibited substance at the Olympic Games. (I don’t bottle my determination but my sweat is for sale on Bid or Buy.)
Since I’ve taken up running, I’ve become aware of a whole new brand of aches and pains. It happens when you start using muscles you never knew existed. Especially the small ones supporting your joints. Normal people would take notice the moment when their bodies start screaming agony! as a warning that they’re hurting. I’m not normal. I’m committed to the point of being obsessive. It makes me a very understanding person. Just ask my kids.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s not like I win anything, I’m not great. I just like to commit 158% to everything I do. It used to be 200% but I’m starting to subtract my age from my expectation. During said race I injured my ankle. I still managed to finish though. Some people call it mind-over-matter, I call it old-age-and-stubbornness. The slight injury turned into “it’s a little sensitive” a day after I completed the race.
The following week I was preparing for the next race. I think there must be some indirect relationship between fitness and common sense. During one of these sessions, where I became even more stupid, the “it’s a little sensitive” turned into mild discomfort. I still didn’t quit. I’m a man. And by now, a big idiot. When the mild discomfort turned into me not being able to walk, I thought it a good idea to take a break.
I actually enjoy running. I was sulking for having to sit out for three weeks. I finally decided I’ve had enough. F*ck the ankle. The Wife suggested I take another week off, just to be sure as she self-diagnosed me with a sprained ligament. I ignored her advise and had a great time on the road. I ran like the wind. Or at least, a very strong fart.
All went well, until I stopped. My little discomfort was back. With a vengeance.
An hour later it felt like someone was stabbing my foot with a flaming, hot rod. Two hours passed and I found myself alone in the bathroom. I think I cried. Pain makes one very delirious. I was trying to hide the fact that I destroyed something beneath my knee. Seven hours later I still couldn’t get down the flight of stairs and the Wife was starting to look for me. I knew my game was up. It was time for confession.
The doctor and x-ray guy diagnosed the source of my agonizing pain as a serious inflamed tendon, causing extreme pressure on the nerve, causing me to consider amputation as a wonderful solution. And the cure? An injection with a needle that would make a horse shit his pants and no running for another two weeks. As per Wife’s suggestion.
Wife never uttered the dreaded words: “I told you so.” But with females words are unnecessary. It’s all captured in a look. And the look on her face said: “Mother knows best.”
PS – I haven’t taken up jogging again. It’s been two months. And now Winter is coming at a speed The Flash would never reach. I still manage to drag my body out of bed every morning and that makes me miserable enough for the time being.