"When my dream vanished right in front my eyes and I didn’t know how to make it better, I was emotionally paralyzed, embarrassed, and terrified."
I never thought it could happen to me. Life was good, work was successful, kids were healthy and growing, his career was thriving, and as an athlete I was in the best shape of my life. Enjoying everything I have always wanted.
My husband was my lucky charm. No race could have gone wrong because I had his support and no matter the outcome, he was proud of me. He always had the best advice, the warmest hugs before a race, and the one smile I looked for at the finish line. I became a runner because he inspired me. I got faster so I could run with him and become his running buddy. Together we trained for our first marathon back in 2015.
When my dream vanished right in front my eyes and I didn’t know how to make it better, I was emotionally paralyzed, embarrassed, and terrified. I stood still, not knowing what to do and how to fix anything. I was broken and sad, the pain turned into anger and that anger turned into a hateful relationship with running.
"Working out gave me the strength I needed to wake up every morning..."
I completely quit running. It brought me memories of the happiest times and I didn’t want any memories. I was angry and with every mile I became more upset and felt more defeated. I no longer wanted to train, to race, or had the passion in my heart to get out there and fight. For me the dream was completely over.
I took all my energy into the gym. I needed to find a way to stay active. I attended 2 classes a day at least 4 times a week. The gym became my escape, my therapy, the most important tool against depression, and the place where I found the strength to continue fighting without giving up.
Working out gave me the strength I needed to wake up every morning and take care of my children; to go to work and come back home every night ready to face the situation in the most positive way. I could have hit rock bottom, but instead I used exercise and the time for myself as part of my transition into recovery.
"I am looking forward to racing more often, to running more miles, to becoming a better cyclist, to enjoying the pool, and to feel the fire in my heart again."
Some time has passed, and I definitely feel more confident. I remember the day I decided that it was time to face my fears, that it was time to lace up my shoes and go run. It was a liberating feeling. Some days the run is flawless and some days the tears get the best of me. I am positive that it will only get better.
The break up was the hardest thing ever to overcome. Making the decision to stay active and to use exercise as my tool for success was the best choice.
I am looking forward to racing more often, to running more miles, to becoming a better cyclist, to enjoying the pool, and to feel the fire in my heart again. I don’t necessarily need to go back to being the athlete I used to be, but all I want is to be a happy athlete that finds passion and joy in the sport again.
Written By: Maricela Urcuyo, Tri Sirena Siren Luminary
Follow Maricela on Instagram @mariurcuyo1
Has staying active helped you recover from a difficult time in your life? Let us know in the comments below!
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