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TMS before an important running race, please help!

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by Dexy, Apr 24, 2019.

  1. Dexy

    Dexy Peer Supporter

    Good evening,

    I’ve used a TMS approach with great success since 2013. I've read many books, been a part of the Wiki, done Monte Huefle's program and with persistence and an unwavering belief, I've been able to successfully overcome hip, buttock, and Achilles pain. I have four copies of Sarno’s book that I pass along to anyone who shows interest in my own journey; it is one of my greatest missions to share this information and help others, as I'm sure it is many of us here who are so grateful to have been helped.

    I am a fairly serious recreational athlete, racing triathlons, marathons and half marathons as well as trail races.

    I have a 25k trail race this Sunday. This past Sunday on an easy run during my taper I had such tightness in my hip (the other hip and a different pain than years past), it was like a cramp and pushing through it didn’t feel good and it felt like I didn’t have full muscle power. I didn’t worry too much about it thanks to the mental muscle I’ve trained with TMS, ie not making it a big deal or obsessing. I trusted it would either go away or if not, I trusted myself to be able to cope with it and push through anyways, as I have with so many other physical pains and symptoms.

    Today, I went for a 6 x 400 quick run to keep the legs snappy and my hip was so tight and painful. I pushed through trying so hard to override the pain and use all of my overcoming TMS strategies. Even with increasing pain, or pain staying the same, I just pushed through, I was determined to not shrink back, to not let the pain own me. Nothing seemed to work.

    I’m now really tight and sore and walking with a small limp.

    I will go to the race on Sunday but I’m curious if you have any thoughts on how to help me overcome this mental battle.

    I strongly believe this is TMS but the pain is so strong and the symptoms are causing me to alter my gait so I am of course worried I won’t be able to access my full power for a race I have trained very hard for. I have been feeling like this race would be a breakthrough for me as I have been having some of my strongest training runs and paces and this is crushing me. I am mainly scared because all of my old TMS techniques are not pulling through and I am even limping!

    Just looking for some words of wisdom.

    Anything you have is much appreciated and thank you for your time.

  2. Andy Bayliss

    Andy Bayliss TMS Coach & Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi Jaclyn,

    I suggest that if/when you run the race, if pain is there, have a few well-tried "support statements" designed ahead of time. Design them by trying them out, out loud, and seeing how they feel in your body. Best tried with running.

    We're running this race because it is important. I'm right here with you.

    The pain is not dangerous even though you're scared. It will be OK.

    I know you're afraid, but we're doing this together. We're OK.

    You can stop the hip pain. I am willing to feel my feelings.

    Etc. You can create better ones than these probably.

    Who all the I's and you's are is not so important as the felt sense in your body. Is there a sense of reassurance and truth?

    What I am suggesting is a kind of "companioning" whereby there is recognition of the condition of difficult sensation/fear etc. and you're also a supportive adult in relationship to the other parts. This is like an affirmation, but it is more nuanced, perhaps more supportive. Rather than collapsing into the difficult conditions or being an unattuned parent who is saying "push through, you shouldn't be afraid," you're recognizing/encouraging.

    It is a matter of asserting what you want, and supporting the fearful parts.

    So that is my best advice for the weekend race. This approach is not for everyone, but you'll know pretty quickly if it might help. And remember "helping" might not be pain relief. It might be a sense of confidence or reassurance to help you stay the course. Or the pain relief might happen after 20 minutes using the statement.

    Andy B
  3. Dexy

    Dexy Peer Supporter

    Andy B,

    I send you deep gratitude through the interwebs for taking the time to help. Using encouraging statement to soothe the inner child really resonates with me and I had an a-ha moment reading it with how I was raised to just "buck up and suck it up", rather than allowing and soothing fear.

    This morning, I feel renewed and am choosing to look at this as an *opportunity* rather than a set-back or difficulty. I have faith from my life experiences thus far that challenges are always opportunities if we look deeply into them through the correct lens. Nothing happens to us, it happens for us; I believe that to my core, although my Small Egoic Self threw a decent pity-party and panic attack yesterday, diving right into the fear response, which is part of the process, so I accept that. "Anything you accept fully, you transcend", a paraphrase of my beloved Eckhart Tolle.

    I meditate daily for an hour and consume all manner of reading related to mindfulness and meditation. I do this to get at the root of why we suffer. I used to drink and smoke marijuana and drink coffee, all of which I have given up on this journey in order to really feel what is there and transcend it. This ache in my hip is allowing me to deepen my self-compassion and thus compassion for others for we can only give to others what we give to ourselves, since we are one at the deepest level.

    This morning, I read some passages from "Smile at Fear" a book by Chogyam Trungpa in the 1980s, and was reminded about how much of this TMS journey is Life's Journey. How we relate to pain and suffering is how we relate to life, because as the Buddha said, Life is suffering. Just as the goal in TMS treatment is not to get rid of the pain but to accept it, it is the exact same thing for any pain we are having in life, in any situation. I have been practicing this from an emotional and spiritual standpoint for a good while, with tremendous success and many shifts in my life, since I wasn't dealing with physical symptoms anymore. Now have the *opportunity* to deepen and enrich this practice again by being gentle and surrendering to the pain, which is then no longer pain, just a collection of energy, who is to define if it is "good" or "bad" from this limited perspective? My ego wants to label it "bad" because it sees it as a threat in the short term, but who are we to say that? How many times in life have "bad" situations ended up good, great, and life-changing? I credit my journey with TMS to changing my life and share that with those around me, how the darkest and hardest moments ended up being the ones I am most thankful for and if we can see that in the midst of the struggle, rather than in hindsight, we are really doing something kind for ourselves. I believe this is another piece of that journey, and strengthening my core and my bravery when faced with fear. When we deal with fear for anything, we deal with fear for everything.

    What particularly resonated with me in the statements you modeled for me, is the gentleness in the approach. I can see that during my run yesterday, I was not being gentle with myself at all, I was being angry and forceful. Anger and force is not strength, it is weakness disguised as strength, as it arises from FEAR. I seek to get at the heart of fear, the root of fear, and to be a warrior in the face of fear, which doesn't mean defeating it through force, it means befriending it with love and acceptance.

    In the book I mentioned "Smile at Fear", Trungpa talks about warriorship. He says: "The definition of warriorship is fearlessness and gentleness. Those are your weapons. The genuine warrior becomes truly gentle because there is no enemy at all." Beautiful.

    Sending all of my love to you Andy and to all.

  4. Andy Bayliss

    Andy Bayliss TMS Coach & Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi Jaclyn,

    I am so happy that you took in my message.

    I get that, and I am very happy for your continued unfoldment, your deep use of TMS work to open the tenderness of your soul! It takes a bravery, and tenderness which Trungpa describes. I guess we're drawn to become more brave and more tender in time, naturally. And it usually isn't easy.

    Andy B
  5. grapefruit

    grapefruit Peer Supporter

    Have you tried Sarno's suggestion to tell your brain "Send bloodflow to the hip"? It always helps me to remember that that's all TMS is, at a physical level - just the slight withdrawal of blood. Circulation occurs in the autonomic system, which is directed by the unconcscious, but the conscious mind can influence the unconscious.
  6. Sofa

    Sofa Well known member

    Let us know how the race goes and good luck! Sounds like you're a heck of an athlete!

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