Updated: Oct 30, 2019
Last week, my friends and I ran up a local trail called Ray Miller. Donny and Shawn wanted to do more than what I wanted to do, so they ran without me. I spent most of time running with another runner until the trail splits off to multiple paths. The interesting thing was as I got to the very top of the peak, I met a gentleman and his wife who’ve run multiple ultras in their lifetime, one being known as Badwater 135. We had great conversions for the last couple miles before I would turn around. He inspired me to keep moving. I felt like god was using him a vessel to let me know to keep pushing. It was a great feeling!
As I was turning back, I met up with my wife and friend who I stayed with for a mile before heading down the mountain by myself. Many thoughts were in my head, letting me know that negative things would happen because I’m out of my “comfort zone.” I’ve dealt with anxiety for almost a year now, some days being awesome and some days not so great. When I talk to people about my situation, they give me the same answer, “embrace the unknown.”
What happens in the unknown? A question I ask myself daily. When I made it down the mountain, I felt amazing. I felt like my true self was coming out and enjoying every moment running down the mountain. Yes, the unknown scares the shit out of me and yes I need to embrace it, but I also need know what’s in it. Like life, we don’t know when we will die. How come I can embrace the fear of death, but I can’t get over an anxiety attack that hurt me in the past. I look back at the past way too much.
I see the accomplishments I achieve in the past and of course I compare myself from last year and to this year. Letting go of the past has been a struggle for me, but also not running the long runs has been a struggle for me as well. There are moments during my run where I think omg I’m going to have an anxiety attack and I won’t be able to handle it. No one ever dies from an anxiety attack!! I need to keep reminding myself just to breathe and be present. I created a story in my head about anxiety and now I’m ready to release it.
Having a support crew with me has been nothing but the best. We all go through up’s and down’s and having friends and family definitely helps move forward. I have my first 50K in three weeks and not sure how it will turn out. I feel stronger in my legs and working on my mental state with daily meditations. It’s time to embrace the unknown and let god in. If anyone reading this is struggling with anxiety, know that things will be better. Keep moving forward because eventually you’ll see a light at the end of the tunnel.