Getting Comfortable With Discomfort

Today is Wednesday. On Sunday night, during the annual Fall wind storm, we lost our power. This morning when I woke up and left for work, the power was still out. No power = no heat, no water, no lights, no internet, no heat, no lights…you get the idea. Luckily, we have a wood burning fire place to keep one room in the house nice and warm, and we’ve been camping out in there.

From a distance, it looks as though I have been taking this whole situation in stride and not letting it bother me one bit. But, to be honest, there was a desperate, whiny group text that went out to my sweat sisters yesterday informing them that I wasn’t handling the situation well at all and someone needed to help me snap out of my funk because all I wanted to do was run away. 

In response to my whiny, emotional text, I got exactly what I needed. This quote: “Adversity does not build character, it reveals it.” And then a prompt to face my frustrations head on in the form of a growl, a Miley style twerk, or a run. And if that didn’t work, wine was recommended, in addition to offers of hot showers and warm houses to stay at. How could you not love these girls?!

Luckily, I had already packed my running clothes and knew that that was the only thing that was going to help me feel better. Unfortunately, I got stuck at work late and only had 45 minutes to get in a run, take a shower (at my sister-in-law’s house), and dry my hair before I had to pick the boys up from daycare. As I was driving to start my run, I was contemplating whether or not it was even worth it. The most I’d have time to do was 3 miles, and that was if I was pushing it. I was having a little pity party (for the second time in one day) when I suddenly just decided I needed to suck it up and get comfortable with being uncomfortable. I decided that I was going to run those 3 miles as fast as I could and really push myself (which I really dislike doing). After all, it was only 3 miles.

So, that’s what I did. I parked my car in my sister-in-law’s driveway (which just happens to be my old house), got out of the car, started my Garmin, and took off. I had decided to do an out and back in the subdivision because I knew I could run that faster than heading into the park and running through the woods. I was pushing it pretty hard. When my Garmin beeped for the first mile, my time was 7:35. Wahoo!!! I was pumped, but immediately thought I was going to die. It’s that whole mental game. I wonder if I would’ve started feeling that awful if I hadn’t looked at how fast I was running…

Anyway, I continued on as fast as I could without hyperventilating. And it was hard. Really hard. I kept telling myself that the more uncomfortable you are with something, the more you need to do it so that it gets easier. By the end of 3 miles it did not feel any easier. But, I was able to finish all 3 miles in under 8:00 min each. It felt awful, and yet so good. And although it wore me out physically, it gave me the mental toughness to go home to my dark, cold house and enjoy the evening stress-free with my family.

What an amazing thing to be able to do. I love when I can recognize my bad attitude and fix it! That is what running can do for me. And that is what makes it so amazing.

Today, after work, I came home to a house that was lit up and being warmed by more than just the wood burning in the fireplace. That was pretty amazing too. Because even though I am pretty good at handling discomfort for a short time, I certainly wouldn’t say I’m comfortable with it.

 Sparkle. Pounce. Boom.

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