As nice as it is to be able to watch an indoor track meet live on ESPN, I am left feeling a bit depressed. I wish I could sit here and write how inspired I am now, and how it was just the kick in the ass I needed to start training like a champion. But honestly, that’s not how I feel.

After the women’s mile, I wasn’t inspired. I was thinking, “I belong up there. If I were healthy and in that race, I would be fighting for that win with Hannah England and Sara Hall.” But that is not a feeling of inspiration. It is a feeling of frustration. So much potential resides in me; it pulses through my veins and into my heart and is recycled over and over again, feeding every cell in my being. I am designed to do this well, and I’m stuck.

Rhines and Fleshman indoors

Geoff Thurner photography

Now that is being a little melodramatic, because in reality, I’m not stuck. I’ve progressed a ton in the past two weeks since starting my new pre-run protocols. I ran 30 minutes this morning and 20 this evening for God’s sake. But it just doesn’t feel like enough.

I’m in that awkward point of improvement where I am better than I was, but I am still sucking wind on my runs, and I am not free to begin training at full strength for a few more weeks. The bottom line is I am still not out of the woods. How is an athlete supposed to be excited about where she is headed where the trees still block the view of the horizon?

As my sports psychologist would say, its not the time to be excited about the future. Its not the time to direct my energy into visualizing successful races and bad ass workouts. Its still time to be focusing on health, remaining present in this day. Its the only way to mentally survive such setbacks, but it is damn hard. And its not as much fun as imagining myself breaking the tape.