Week #6: “Why doesn’t anybody like me?”

DAY | PLAN | ACTUAL
MON | REST | REST
TUE | 3M/STRENGTH | 3.3M (8:53/MI)/STRENGTH
WED | 5M | 5.2M (10:07/MI)
THU | 3M/STRENGTH | 3.1M HILL INT (9:50/MI)/STRENGTH
FRI | REST | REST
SAT | YOGA | BIKRAM90
SUN | 7M | 7.6 (9:45/MI)
TOTAL |18 MILES | 19.2 MILES

This was a rough week. I’m squeezing in this wrap-up to you guys pretty late and I should have week 7 coming up shortly behind it. Week #6 was rough, and then it was followed by an even tougher seven days–not in training, but in life. I always try to make my wrap-ups about a bit more than just the running, but I found it hard last week to get anything down on paper besides this. (Thanks to all of you who read and commented and supported that post, btw.)

As you can see from above, week 6 was a step-back week, my weekday runs stayed steady and the weekend long run dropped down in mileage in order to gather strength for the next push upward. My training plan has a step-back week every third week and I find it really helpful. Because my personality is so PUSH PUSH PUSH, the step-back weeks make me feel really rational and sane. I was glad to find these characteristics in training because they were completely absent from the rest of my life during this week.

Let me preface this whole ramble by saying I was a week out from my period. My craziness does like to spread itself out throughout the month but consistently finds itself in tip-top form the week before Flo comes to visit. (I like to mention this whenever it’s relevant cause period shaming is for suckers.)

It all started on WordPress actually. If you guys have had any interaction with me at all you probably know that I read and comment on a LOT of blogs. This means I get a lot less sleep than I probably should, but it also means that I am constantly learning things from all of you and opening my mind to different ideas and different kinds of people. I’ve got a list of tags that I follow of subjects that interest me and I really go to town reading and giving feedback; I truly believe it’s one of the ways I’m growing most as a writer. So it was during one of these reading sessions that I realized there was a blogger that I had been reading posts from pretty consistently. I really liked their blog. I looked back and realized that I had liked several of their posts, and then I recalled that I was even inspired to comment on a few of them. That’s when I thought, “Oh, I should probably follow this person, I have liked a lot of their stuff.” And then it happened, I looked back at some of the posts I knew I had commented on and the comments weren’t there. Apparently they had never approved them. First, I felt hurt. Then, I felt embarrassed–I thought, “this person probably thinks that I am stalking them.” With my emotions already riding up and down, I closed the app and said, “Why doesn’t this person like me?”

A day later I called my dentist for the third time to try to schedule a cleaning. Once again the hygienist (who doubles as the office assistant), asked if he could call me back as he was too busy to check the availability at that moment. That’s when I really lost it. Standing on the sidewalk, underneath scaffolding, outside my office, I let loose a whiny tirade that the poor fellow on the other end did not deserve or I’m sure have time for. It went something (or exactly) like this:

“Is there a reason you guys don’t want me as a patient anymore? This is the third time I have tried to call and schedule an appointment and someone always says they are going to call back and they don’t and I’m just starting to feel like this is being done purposely. I have good insurance, I have always paid my bills, I try to be pleasant to be around and am always respectful of people there, I can’t understand why you wouldn’t want me as a patient. But if that is the case please just tell me now and I will find another dentist.”

I’m not going to share the hygienists insanely apologetic response. It just makes this story more embarrassing. I have an appointment on Tuesday.

I tell both of these stories to demonstrate how insane my brain (and unfortunately my actions) can get, but also to reveal a least favorite part of me: the part that’s desperate for people to like me.

I’m a pretty loud, confident, dominant personality. I actually feel fairly introverted but have more recently become aware that the world sees me as much more extroverted. I’ve been putting on the “I don’t give a fuck what anyone thinks of me” face, for as long as I can remember. (Like no joke, since I was in kindergarten–I’ve got another story that proves this but I’ll save it for another time). I think the irony in tough people like me is that we often care a great deal what other people think. During an especially torrid time like week 6, I am often able to hit the ultimate trifecta:

  1. Act like I don’t care what anyone thinks of me
  2. Get inordinately hurt when someone doesn’t care for me or something I’ve done
  3. Feel angry, frustrated, and disappointed with myself for not being able to truly be a person who doesn’t care what people think

This cycle is viscous and not at all constructive; I beat myself up for acting on an aspect of myself I’m not happy with, and end up no closer to a solution or way of working through inevitable feelings.

Luckily, I’m training for a marathon and being in a step-back week was just what the nut-doctor ordered. I honestly think it would have been really difficult to get through really long runs in weeks 6, but luckily, that’s not where I was at. Everything was doable; the schedule allowed me the space to really focus on the mental aspect of training. I felt down, I felt depressed, I felt like nobody was on my side. But throughout the week, each day was just like a run– I had to get out there and do it, despite my feelings. I had to keep pushing through and telling myself that not all of my feelings were facts, and they did not always have to direct my actions–I could accomplish things, even when my mind was shouting that I couldn’t.

By the end of week 6 the clouds had cleared. I no longer thought that everyone hated me and thoughtful, rational decisions were surpassing all the crazy. My lighter running week had produced huge mental gains, and I felt rested and strong and ready for the lengthier challenges in week 7.

This blog is one of the best teachers I’ve ever had. That blogger (or bloggers, I am sure there is more than one!) out there who doesn’t care for me is such a gift. They reminded me, passive dislike is nothing–I’ve had some pretty virulent opposition to some things I have written. Practicing how to handle any type of criticism or negativity is vital. I don’t want to put on the “I don’t give a fuck” face anymore. But I truly do want to grow and wear a thicker skin. I know I’ll need it for where I’m going.

 

Alright guys, I’m sure all of you have amazing stories that exemplify your insecurities that you are dying to share. Let’s hear em’!

 

header image: lee scott