I have realized lately that I had completely forgotten this lesson in terms of running. This is probably the third time that my knee has surfaced as an issue (it tends to do that when I up the mileage). The past two times I have gotten freaked out (Am I just not meant for long-distance running? Will I have to stop running? Are my knees dying?) and cut way back until my knee felt better--but not really dealt with the underlying problem (i.e., is this a muscle thing? Tight hips?). No physical therapy, no doctor, no research-- just a bunch of fear. This time, (partially thanks to reading a whole bunch of blogs and the RW forums) I feel much calmer about things. Sure, my knee needs some attention--but it's normal. Again, going back to George Leonard's Mastery, "If your path is a physical one, and if you're like most of us, you'll probably encounter injuries somewhere along the way. Minor ones come with the territory."
Right... forgot about that.
Running can be a really solitary pursuit--I think running with community support (even if it's a cyber-community) helps to keep out the "What ifs?" and remember that my trail isn't that much different than other runners-- we are all experiencing training bumps and detours and figuring out how to navigate back to the course. (Excuse the overly extended metaphor.) To end with Leonard (yes, it's one of my favorite books right now): "The best way of achieving a goal is to be fully present. Surpassing previous limits involves negotiating with your body, not ignoring or overriding its messages. Negotiation involves awareness. Avoiding serious injury is less a matter of being cautious than of being conscious."
As of today, my knee and I have entered into negotiations...