Not running due to illness or injury, what’s worse?

Not running because of an injury or an illness?  Let’s be honest, if you’ve been running for any length of time, both suck.

Not Running SucksWaking up in the morning feeling refreshed and full of energy and then suddenly realizing that you can’t slap on your favorite shoes and hit the streets for a run is a horrible feeling and we’ve all been there but I have to tell you, I think not running due to an illness is the worst.

when you cant runI’d be lying if I didn’t say that there is an emotional roller coaster we often ride when it comes to injury, especially if it happens during training for a race.  It can be devastating.  That being said, you can usually still manage to get that endorphin rush through other forms of exercise and in the end, you will run again.

Case in point, when I was having hip issues a few years back I could still manage to do a pretty intense weight routine and I did a lot of swimming.  Both managed to lift my spirits and keep my endurance up.  When you’re dealing with an illness it’s not that easy.  It brings moody to a whole new level.

mood swings

Yep, that’s me.

Illness is an entirely different beast altogether.  Whether your illness is short term or chronic, it may prevent you from doing any type of aerobic or strength workout altogether.    Depending on what you’re suffering from, if you continue to work out when you’re ill you could actually make the situation worse.  That’s exactly what happens to me.

Not knowing when I’ll be able to run again is the worst for me.  If it were a fractured leg or a sprained ankle at least I would have an idea of how much time it could take to heal, but in my case I don’t know.  The unknown scares me and since I would typically run and work out my feelings, well, you get the point.  In some respects I’m really lucky because I can still manage to walk every day and I can do light weight routines without any major problems, but it’s just not the same.  In fact, it’s not even close.

not my jamIt’s definitely not a position that I enjoy being in because I’ve never been one of those people who wants to take a break from running.  I seriously love running, any day, all day, all the time.  Love.  It.  But illness forces you to listen to your body.  It demands that you pay attention.  You have no other choice.  You’re stuck on the sideline for the time being, and how long that is, who knows?   In my opinion illness is way worse than not running due to injury but I’m interested in your perspective too.

So tell me, what do you think is worse, not running due to illness or injury?

8 thoughts on “Not running due to illness or injury, what’s worse?

  1. Ugh yeah I totally hear this. I’ve been injured off again/on again for a year now and it’s driving me crazy! It’s so hard to deal with a running injury because I know it’s going to be one of those things that I never fully recovery from, and I just wish I could go back in time and not sign up for “one last half marathon this year”. I hope you’re back to running again soon, and in the mean time we can both be sidelined together!

  2. You are right…not running sucks. I am so sorry you are going through this. Two summers ago I didn’t think my hips/lower back would allow me to run anymore. I was sad and frustrated but at that time I tried to focus on what I could do and it was then I decided to drop the “runner” tag and consider myself a triathlete (subbing walking for running) and focused on cycling and swimming. I also added in yoga (which has taken a back seat to weights which I REALLY got into last year). Running did end up coming back but when people ask me if I am a runner I just say “I am a triathlete”. I know running probably won’t be in my life forever and I had to find some way to embrace the hand I was dealt. Hang in there…keep taking your walks and keep your chin up. I truly believe you will run again!

    • This. This was what I needed! Thank you because you just made me feel a thousand times better. I was just thinking this morning that maybe I shouldn’t just identify myself as a runner but rather an athlete and I should just get up and get my sweat on in whatever way I can. Thank you so much for your kind words 🙂

  3. Kelli@hungryhobby

    I sooo understand how you feel and what you’re going through. I have dealt with injury and it sucks not to run. Hang in there because speaking from experience you WILL run again!

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