Being Satisfied With Your Best

Last week I only rode my bike to the shuttle bus that runs between the metro station closest to where I live and the metro station closest to where I work on Monday and Tuesday instead of biking the whole way to work.

I had a pretty significant back injury 5 years ago that wasn’t treated until 4 years ago and resulted in finally having surgery 3 years ago.  The recovery from the surgery was a year-long process and it has only been since about March of this year that I have felt “good’ or “normal” all the time.

I’ve been carrying my clothes, lunch, purse, U-lock, and coffee in my backpack every day to and from work.  I had started noticing some pain in my back and I was worried about it, but choosing to ignore it.  When I took the week off at the beginning of September my back pain disappeared and I felt great.  I realized it must be the weight from my backpack every day.

Over the last few weeks the pain has increased enough that I’ve been paying attention on a daily basis.  So last week I opted to only ride 3.5-4 miles to the shuttle instead of biking the whole way.  I spent all day Monday and Tuesday morning beating myself up over it.  I was so discouraged and disappointed in myself for taking the bus instead of riding.

And then I read this:   It was exactly what I needed to hear.  Especially this

let’s move away from apologizing when we’re out there trying our hardest and focus more on what you accomplished.

I may not have biked the whole way to work, but last year at this time I didn’t bike to work at all and I had just started exercising regularly.  I only rode occasionally.  Two years ago I was only able to exercise in very controlled circumstances.  Three years ago I was still under very strict restrictions of movement which included no bending or twisting my torso at all for three months, no lifting more than 5 pounds, Vicodin every four hours, and Valium on top of that if needed.

I biked to the bus, worked all day, took the bus part way home, biked the rest, cooked dinner and did it all over again the next day.

The article reminded me that I’m allowed to be okay with doing my best, even if my best isn’t quite what I would like it to be.  It’s okay to be glad that I biked 3.5 miles each way instead of nothing.  It’s okay to be satisfied with doing what I can.


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