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Getting Back To Me: On My Way

We are in the last month of our house build and I really thought that we would be able to just coast and let things wrap up. Boy, was I wrong. This month has been a doozy for my stress level. Last month I finally recognized that I was highly stressed, and with that realization came my need to acknowledge when I was overwhelmed and stressed out. Lately it has been pretty much every day. One day I had a melt down over faucets and light fixtures. As I sat on my stairs in tears, I was amazed that I was crying over bathroom faucets – of all things! Yes, I know it wasn’t just about faucets, I had let circumstances overwhelm me and there I was crying over stupid stuff. I’ve never been one to cry much and I’ve never really understood the concept of “having a good cry,” but I think that was what happened. And then I sucked it up and moved on. I’m learning to recognize and acknowledge my stress. I guess that’s a good thing.

Along with the acceptance of my stress came my awareness that I was putting too many things on my plate. When I let go of my goals, for the time being, I was able to look at my running and workouts with a fresh perspective. I started viewing my runs and workouts as a good way to relieve my stress instead of as another item on my to-do list. I took the complexity and over-planning out of my workouts and just got it done. I put my headphones on and went out for a run and just got away from it all without concern for how far I would go or how many runs I was going to get in that week. You know what happened? I begin to enjoy my runs again. I started feeling better after my workouts instead of feeling like I was barely going to finish. I quit allowing myself to make any excuses. I was consistent. I started getting back to me – the girl who loves running and working out.

This photo of me running the Wenatchee Half Marathon in 2013 helps me remember what “Getting Back To Me” means. This is one of my favorite races and the photo reminds me of when I was more focused on training and truly was enjoying running.

Recognizing my stress also made me realize that negativity around me added to my stress level. In an attempt to counteract the negativity that often presses in from outside sources, I made a concentrated effort to find something positive to celebrate everyday. I committed to 30 days of positive posts on my Facebook page. This has helped me look for the positive even on those days when wallowing in the negative would be easy to do. Focusing on positive things makes a big difference for me in diminishing the effects of stress. Another step towards getting back to me.

Yes, some days are harder than others. That’s life. Sure, I’ve still had some rough runs. I still have days when I want to make excuses, but it has started to feel like the exception rather than the norm. I’m on my way back, and that’s kind of awesome!

Stay tuned. I will continue writing about this journey back to me in 2017 with the hope that this will help someone else who is in the same boat and needs some encouragement. Join me! How do you manage your stress?

My journey – so far . . .
Getting Back to Me – The First 10 Pounds is the Hardest 

Getting Back to Me – Progress Not Perfection
Getting Back to Me – Life Happens and I’m OK With That
Getting Back to Me – Recognizing Stress

 

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About Annette Vaughan (293 Articles)
Annette Vaughan is a runner, personal trainer, and race director in Canby, Oregon. She began running at the age of 30 and became hooked after her first race (even though she is a self-proclaimed slow runner.) She enjoys small local races from 5Ks to half-marathons, with a 30K on the books as her longest run ever. She has also become a huge fan of obstacle course races and just can't get enough of them. Annette is the race director for Get A Clue Scavenger Race and owns a personal training studio in Canby. She believes in promoting movement, since our bodies were designed to move. The more we move, the better we move and function in everyday life.

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