I've been thinking.
Runners hate injuries. Hate. Hate. HATE!
Injured runners are borderline psychotic. Might as well put them in a round room and tell them to pee in the corner. (Yes, that kind of psychosis - the psychosis that warrants straight jackets and shock therapy.)
Now. How do I know this to be true? Did I make it up? Absolutely not!
I've been an injured runner.
Today I was checking on a dear running mate with a stress fracture, so as to lend support with comforting words of encouragement. (And to see if the shock therapy provides her with the same rush as it did for me.)
She has a stress fracture in the foot. I've had a stress fracture in the foot. Hurts like hell. Worse, it's not like it's bad enough to use crutches or anything like that. Basically running is completely out of the question and you walk on it as little as possible for 6 weeks. It's enough to drive one bonkers. (Remember the round room? Pee in the corner? Yeah that kind of bonkers.)
During the conversation with my injured compatriot, I said something like, "I guess a stress fracture just happens to anyone who pounds out the mileage. It's not if you get a stress fracture, it's when. So... consider this your rite of passage. You've had your stress fracture, now you can move on!"
This is when I started thinking.
What if we treated our injuries like belt loops and merit badges? Like the Boy Scouts do? Wouldn't that be great? Then instead of saying, "Bummer. I've got ITBS!" One can say, "I just earned by ITBS merit badge!"
We could design belt loops and patches. Minor injuries would get belt loops. Major injuries would get a full on badge. Once you've earned each injury's merit badge, get your mom to sew the badge onto the ancestral running outfit.
Wear that outfit with pride on race day.