Friday, January 21, 2011

I Am A Rubber Ball (Again)

Yesterday 5:30 PM
I had a bad day yesterday.  I'm not sure why, there wasn't any specific event or trigger that cause my mood to plummet.  Rather, by the end of the day I was just, shall we say, "over it".

But when I woke up this morning, I was fine and ready to jump back into the fray.  I was ready to go to work.  I was looking forward to getting a bunch of stuff done.  There is no doubt the reset button was pressed overnight, because I woke up optimistic.

I'm sure this happens to a lot of you.  I'm no psychologist, but the ability to emotionally recover with rest is probably meant to be hard wired into our being.  When I was in my 20's, I could have the worst day ever and bounce right back the next day.  Automatically, with no questions asked.

However, in my 30's, my ability to bounce back from a bad day started to wane.  I could be in a funk for days.  When the drinking was at it's heaviest, the light or enjoyable moment was the exception.  I was functioning, but just.  Or maybe not.

I came back around when I hit 40.  It wasn't the endurance sports, per se.  I was (and am still not) driven by PR's or reaching milestones.  Instead, endurance sports helped put a real purpose back in my life, which in turn allowed me to get back on track all the way around.  Though there where other factors, I bet you that almost every change I made can be traced back to my decision to buy running shoes and join the gym.

Age doesn't mean shit anything.  I have more vitality now than I've had anytime in my life.  And this is coming from a guy who was on a heavy dose of Xanax for a year because I had convinced myself that my heart was going to stop beating at any second.  I would worry about it so much that I'd have panic attacks.  And guess what panic attacks can feel like?  You got it - heart attacks.  Man, that year sucked.

But even still...I wouldn't have been able to get started without a support system.  My doctor screaming at me got me off my ass, but Mary and Ian kept me from sitting back down.  And then there is you guys - you helped make 2010 amazing.

That's pretty much all I have today....

29 comments:

Jennifer said...

A rubber ball is good. Bike tires have rubber in then, so do many swim caps and running shoes, in some form. We live our lives for the bounce-back. Good job Patrick, good post.

Aimee said...

Good post! I do think it's amazing how we can bounce back so easily. I love the rubber ball analogy!

Shawn said...

That adreneline in your system helps to motivate...along with that support system....and I agree, tomorrow is always a new beginning! Enjoy the weekend....

Heather said...

A good support system makes all the difference! Glad to hear you've bounced back!

Jess @ Blonde Ponytail said...

Wow! I am learnign so much more about you! 2010 was a pivotal year indeed!

Isn't the virtual support amazing?!

Happy bouncing!

Christi said...

I had a couple of days like that this week. I didn't immediately bounce back but I am on the way! Thanks for sharing!

Adrienne said...

Thanks for sharing Patrick. It's always nice to know we can hit the "reset" button. Anxiety and panic attacks are not fun. Been there done that.

TRI714 said...

BLEH ! Your a rock star to me homie. Way to get over it. An get on with it. I KNOW YOUR DAY !!

misszippy said...

Great post. I truly believe that if more people understood the values of exercise--beyond just the physical--so many more would be at it.

Kate said...

And being involved in endurance sports makes you take better care of yourself. I can't get to bed on time for anything just because I "should" get more sleep, but you can bet I'm in bed early if I have to get up at 4:30 to run!

Jeff - DangleTheCarrot said...

You know what the best thing is for me after a shit day (which have been numerous lately)? - Waking up at 4am to go swim 3500yds.

That is my reset button. Having that feeling that I just busted my ass before the vast majority of people even roll theirs out of bed.

Have a good weekend

Barbie said...

Keep bouncing Patrick - only forward allowed :)

Emz said...

wait
wait
wait.

you are old.

my favorite old guy [don't tell Kovas or my new BFF Chris K].

ok
fine.

You KNOW I love this post.

it.
rocks.
snipers.

DRog said...

"I was functoning, but just. Or maybe not."

hahahaha

dont worry - from experience the ball will bounce again! and now you are equipped to deal!

DR

Bruce said...

Thanks for sharing the bad and the good. We all get down and it helps to know that others get through it. I've posted before that running helps me to take a look at myself like nothing else. I find what I am made of when I run. I am stronger and tougher than I think I am.

Julie @ Hotlegs Runner said...

This happens to me on a monthly basis and we females call it, PMS. Haha! No worries, Patrick. You are not alone. It;s just one of those days. What I do is just read everyone's blog posts for the day and that seems to make me feel better. Motivated even =)

Jason said...

Another quality post in a string of quality posts.

It is amazing how quickly we bounce back and how we are able to overcome with a bigger/better purpose.

You can always lean on us when needed.

Kate said...

Running has given me the sense of purpose and focus I needed once I entered the real world a few years ago. My job wasn't exactly satisfying and running filled that void. It still does. At the same time it inspires me to do more and to push myself, even outside of running.

Better yet, it gives me a reason to get off my butt and stop moping around when I'm having a bad day. Without it I'd feel lost.

P.S. I'm in my twenties and even I don't bounce right back. Maybe I am overly emotional and dramatic. Who knows.

P said...

Love this post! I can pretty much guarantee I'll be thinking about being a rubber ball next time I have a crap day - thanks!

Chris K said...

Chicks dig the sensitive guy. I need to try that. Okay, seriously, I think days like that are just necessary else we'd have nothing to guage the good days. Light cannot exist without the presence of darkness.

Chris K said...

BTW, EMZ call all of the 3 Muskateers "old"

Kovas said...

A bad is to be expected, it's when you can't bounce back when the problems begin. Good to hear that you are finding your way.

Kristin said...

You have come along way. Think of all your accomplishments that people would never do or dream to do. You are a great person and believe in that physically and Mentally!! All else with follow

Christine Jensen said...

It's amazing the power of exercise to overcome mental challenges. I know that when I am exercising I am a much better mom to my kids (a whole lot less yelling and screaming) and when I am not...yuck..let's just say I need to start up again..winter stinks for running when you don't have a treadmill and it likes to sit in the teens...

Thank you for sharing your adventures and showing why it is we do what we do. You rock!

Johann said...

Nothing better than being a rubber ball! Great post Patrick! Go big and bounce high!

valen said...

great post... yeah... it is not all endurance sports, but they probably give a framework to work with. and a shit day is not a shit day of training only, but how you come back to your training maybe does help visualizing how to come back to the rest of the life? dunno... you got me thinking, man.

Tortuga_Runner said...

Love this post. Speaking of a good nights sleep and waking up having bounced back....I am off to bed to hopefully get out of my funk. You inspire.

Tortuga_Runner said...

Love this post. Speaking of a good nights sleep and waking up having bounced back....I am off to bed to hopefully get out of my funk. You inspire.

Jill said...

Age: I run better (or did before my heel started yelling) after I turned 40 than I did before. I think it's because I learned so much and could draw on that wisdom to train so much differently. Glad you're finding the low days seldom...still, they're good because they make us appreciate the good days that much more!

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