Interesting thing I learned in class today. What physically happens when you cut yourself is pretty interesting. There are four stages to regenerate your skin. The first stage is called Inflammatory Phase, where bleeding occurs and blood clots happen which protects the skin from getting infected again. The second stage is called the Migratory Phase, where damaged cells are replaced and we have things called macrophages patrol damaged area in the skin and eat the debris. The third stage is called the Proliferation Phase where the fibroblasts get together to repair the skin with scar tissue (skin with extra collagen, which is why the scar tissue has this shiny look) and while that's all going on, the clot breaks down from the inside out, leading to the final stage. The last stage is called the Maturation Phase. By now the scab is gone, the skin is fixed up and now we have scar tissue growing over the epidermis.
You learn so much in class and I'm so very grateful. It's interesting to see how your body works because the more you understand about yourself, the better you can work with your physical goals. The healing that takes place in the body when you're regenerating is the most efficient way the body can do it. We can always help the body out with stitches, bandages, and other things, but by itself, the body is pretty darn good at patching itself up. We are very complex and how we do things are pretty awesome.
Now the important part that I'm going to talk about right now is how the body heals itself and how I apply it to my running. It's important to me to be able to understand how the body works because of its efficiency. The body is very capable of doing so much and works in the best possible way. So how can I apply this knowledge to running? Simple. Take the physical and make it psychological. The most important thing the runner has to have in being able to do well in races is confidence. A runner without confidence... without guts... can only go so far. It's up to those that push themselves forward to get to their goals. Sometimes, with injury or defeat, a bad race or whatnot, we lose that confidence and we backtrack. So how can we build our confidence back up?
Think of the 4 steps of Skin Regeneration and apply them directly to your confidence building. First, you have to stop. Just stop. Think about what led you to where you are and think about what you're going to do about it. Know where you are will allow you to get yourself to where you want to be. Second, you have to rebuild all the broken confidences by adding new things to be confident about. Things that aren't easily broken. Since you've stopped and are ready to move forward get rid of all the extra stuff that gets in the way and eats at you. Removing the doubt will definitely improve your regeneration because keeping it inside is just keeping junk. Thirdly, you need to begin rebuilding what you need to be confident in. Your successes, your training foundation... yourself. Finally, at this time, you're ready to go out again, ready to take on the world after rebuilding yourself up in the most efficient way possible, getting rid of everything you didn't need in the first place, focusing on the things you're made of... because you aren't confident in what you've done. You're confident in YOU.