Catching Our Rainbow

Hoping for a rainbow after the storm…

My Coping Strategy

on June 19, 2013

Today is a beautiful day in small-town, East Tennessee. It’s amazing what some sunshine can do–I’m feeling peaceful and hopeful, and I don’t want to write about grief today. Today, I want to tell all of my blog friends about one of the good things in my life. As I said in my last post, hubby and I are training for a triathlon in August. I actually found it online the day of my second ultrasound and made up my mind then and there that we would participate in it (I say participate because I’m really not good enough to say we will compete). I know that exercise is a good way to keep depression at bay, and the only way I will actually get motivated enough to exercise everyday is to set an optimistic goal and find a training program that will keep me from looking like a fool in August. Plus, I figured exercise will help me sleep at night and help me keep up a healthy appetite (some people eat too much when they are sad, I stop eating when I’m sad). So training for this triathlon is basically a preemptive strike again the sadness that completely overwhelmed me and pulled me under after my other losses.

You can check out our training program here. We are on week four, but we skipped week three because it is an eleven week program and we decided to start training 10 weeks before the triathlon. We try to follow the schedule as closely as possible and also do weight training two times a week (right now it’s on bike days). I won’t lie, it’s been hard. I’ve never exercised regularly before (in fact I hated exercising), so I’m basically starting from nothing, but I’m already amazed at what my body can do. So far, the workouts aren’t necessarily getting easier, but I’m recovering so much more quickly when we are done. I’m getting better at controlling my breathing, and yesterday, I could actually feel myself bringing my heart rate back down so that I didn’t feel so much like I was going to die. The moment only lasted about 30 seconds, but it was there which encourages me that there will be more moments like it.

This process has been good for my body image, and it is teaching me to be kind to myself. I’ll never make it through this program if I constantly tell myself that I can’t do it or think of my body as a failure. It’s also been good for hubby and me to have something to work towards together. It has been a great way for us to support one another and complement each other on a good workout or the progress we are making.

Basically, I’m so glad we chose to do this, and the whole process is exceeding my expectations. If you had told me a few months ago that I would be working out five days a week and participating in a triathlon in August, I would have looked at you like you had two heads. It’s amazing how much a life can change in a year, and as much as I grieve for what was and what could have been, I am thankful that things don’t always turn out as we plan them.

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2 responses to “My Coping Strategy

  1. storkchaser says:

    This is so so awesome! Training is great for healing. Can’t wait to hear more about this process and the event itself. Nyrunningmama (I think that’s her blog title) is a great athlete and is currently training for Iron Man. She has awesome tips for your first tri on her blog. Lmk if you can’t find it and need the link.

  2. Annie says:

    I’m so glad the training has been such a positive influence for you! It sounds like it’s been very helpful for both your body and mind. I really admire your courage and your forward thinking in doing your best to avoid known pitfalls, like exercising to help yourself keep up a healthy appetite. I’m in a similar place right now, trying to map out the best path I can for the bumpy road ahead. Thinking of you. I’m here for you if you ever want to chat.

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