The Capacity to Love Running

You can run, but you can’t hide, so I give up for now. Why is it so simple for others to see, but so hard for me to accept, even when the equation is right there: Pain = No running/racing. Is it a girl thing? I’m not sure? But the men in my life seem to think it is easy. “STOP RUNNING”. It is not that easy. It feels like failure. I don’t like to give up. But I want to be running in the mountains for a long time yet. I have to “practise what I preach”. So this is it. Right here, right now, pen on paper. I will stop training until I get better. My mind has been stressed. I have continued to train in the gym; I have wanted desperately to run. But I haven’t allowed rest and recovery. I can’t race with no running and I can’t run with pain.


As the waves crashed onto my sandy feet on the seaside of Buzios I smiled. I took a deep breathe and let everything go. I made the decision. And since making the decision, even through the tears, I have felt a sense of relief. My body and mind have relaxed. I look forward to different things in the day. My adrenaline and endorphins will be sparked with a month of travel with friends and the running family to new and old places – Rio, Buzios, Bariloche, San Fran and LA – before heading to NZ for the summer. Where I can swim in my seas, walk on my mountains and reconnect my roots.

Next year I will start again. Ready, better prepared and fresh.

Real words from ‘Born to Run’ – Christopher McDougall ‘There was some kind of connection between capacity to love and the capacity to love running. The engineering was certainly the same: both depended on loosening your grip on your own desires, putting aside what you wanted and appreciating what you had, being patient and forgiving and undemanding’.



24 thoughts on “The Capacity to Love Running

  1. I don’t to push the “like” button. It’s hard when you can do the things you love. I’m in the same situation. I decided not to run again until 2013 and try to recover my everlasting tendonitis. Try to swim, cycling (if you can)… and recover asap. Get well soon !!!

  2. I hope you can find happiness and enjoyment in other outdoor adventures as you give your body the rest it is crying out for. The return to the thing you love will be even sweeter next year. I love what AJW wrote on I run Far this week that is apropos:

    “The gift of running is a truly extraordinary one and one that can easily be taken for granted. I have learned that over the last year and half and am proud to have made it out the other side. I am humbled to know that even in middle age I have so much to learn and that running has so much to teach. We are rendered anew each time we lace ‘em up and get out there even if it comes with the nerves of a 7th grader running his first cross-country race. For it is only through the process of stripping ourselves bare and facing the truth that we become better runners and, ultimately, better people.”

    Peace to you, Frosty!

  3. I haven’t been able to run since July because I got an adductor tendonitis. I know the feeling! I’ve felt not only physical pain in both ‘ingle’ zone but also emotional pain. There are days I could hardly get off the bed! sheer suffering!
    I hope you can heal ur injury and god lets you go running as much as you love. my best! cheers from CHILE.

  4. Don’t forget you’re an inspiration to many. Smile and trust God. It’s certainly hard, but healing needs to take time so you are appreciative and ready to take on the world when restoration is accomplished.

  5. This is why you are a hero to me. You are an amazing, inspirational and gutsy woman Anna and I stove to be half the runner you are. You know logically that the rest will allow you to come back stronger than ever but it makes sense that you will feel a certain amount of grief and loss by stopping running. That’s normal. I know you can get through this.

  6. Tough choice hun but the right one made and sometimes the hardest thing is to make the right choice, the rest will take care of itself! Besides maybe it will give me half a chance to get fit enough to be able to go for one of your retraining runs with you when you get back to NZ! Have a ball on your travels, rest, recoup and enjoy those simple things in life that you are so good at appreciating xxx

  7. Every runner knows this feeling. No one likes to give up… but it’s not the end. It’s just the beginning for a better year.
    That 2013 be your’s, Frosty 😉 Kisses from Reunion Island

  8. I reckon AK knows a thing or two about what you are going through 😉 OK, so his injury was a bit different, but still, look where proper rest and recovery have got him – he is coming back stronger than ever. That’ll be you next year, lass, so it will. In the meantime, enjoy your travels, enjoy the biking and the swimming,relax and enjoy spending time with the people that matter. Take care, chuck x

  9. Anna: “Speak quietly to yourself and promise there will be better days. Whisper gently to yourself and provide assurance that you really are extending your best effort. Console your bruised and tender spirit with reminders of many other successes. Offer comfort in practical and tangible ways — as if you were encouraging your dearest friend. Recognize that on certain days, the greatest grace is that the day is over and you get to close your eyes. Tomorrow comes more brightly.”

    This post has touched me. As a triathlete, I too have been plagued by injury and suffered from the inability to fully rest. You have decided to stop fighting fire with fire; you had been putting so much effort and energy into refusal to rest, it left you exhausted; the body doesn’t differentiate between the sources of the stressors we put on it; whether it be physical stress of exercise or self inflicted mental torture. Take a deep breath, exhale, and say fuck it, you’re going to let yourself heal, and you’ve taken the first step in that process so you can re-kindle your love for the trail.

    I know it will be a quick recovery, the body achieves what the mind believes, and my god woman, the trails run through your veins!

  10. It’s nice to hear another person get how hard it is to stop. It’s not that easy. In fact, there’s nothing easy about it at all. But your capacity to love, to love running, will expand during this time, and I look forward to seeing what adventures, both running and non-running, you take on.

  11. Fuerza Anna, me hubiese gustado verte correr en Villa la Angostura, pero lo importante es que el año proximo estes corriendo nuevamente, feliz y sin dolores. Pasara, eres fuerte, solo son vacaciones obligadas.

  12. Feel better soon Anna! You are an inspiration to a lot of us! You reminded me to be sensible and patient with my body when I broke my foot 8 weeks ago, I wouldn’t be gearing up (healthy and pain free) to toe the start line of TNF 50 in a couple weeks without your advice, your words helped me keep my head and successfully return to running like I know you will next year! Happy running in 2013 !

  13. I’ve been training for the TNF50 in SF for the past year now, and was doing so well up until a month ago- my left inner adductor on my knee is just overworked, and the more I run, the more disabling it is. I’ve laid off of it, and cranked on the bike, yoga, and in the pool, but my lack of running in the 1-2 months pre-race is leading me to think it’s a bad idea to run it, despite wanting to so badly. But there are other races, and I’d rather be able to run at all, even if just 5 miles, than kill myself over one race. While biking to a yoga class this morning, it was a bit chilly, but I passed a man running towards the sunrise in the middle of San Francisco’s Mission district wearing nothing but his shoes and bright red running shorts, hair flying, and running down the quiet streets as though there were nothing more natural or normal- and I remembered why I run, to feel that way.

  14. Good choice! Your body ultimately dictates what you can do. You will come back stronger and more mentally prepared to, um, kick butt! The trails are there for you when you are ready! Heal up!

  15. Pingback: Anna Frost: Sposobnost da voliš trčanje | Nacionalnost: Trkač

  16. One week before this year’s TNF 50 I tweaked my knee on a glorious 15-20 mile run (i was just out running for fun.. Who knows the true distance) on a rocky trail in Tennessee while home visiting family over thanksgiving. Now I cannot run more than a mile without pain. I still went to San Fran too, I mean we already had plane tickets and hotel reservations. Looks like I’ll be taking December off with you and holding out till the 2013 season… I’m sure I’ll see you around. Hope you enjoy your rest and good luck in 2013. I’ll be chillaxing, snowboarding, and doing other excellent non-running activities for the next several weeks, I hope you enjoy your time off as well, and resume running for the sake of fun and pure enjoyment in 2013. Happy running Miss Frost

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