I never wanted my first ever post on here to be a negative one, but let me just get this out there: being injured sucks!! There. Over with. Now let’s move onto the positives….
Whether you have a knee ‘niggle’ or a dodgy shoulder or you full-on break a bone (hands up for multiple fractures!) you will undoubtedly have been given the advice to rest and recover. And when you’re a fit, healthy individual with a motivation to train; this can sound like the most depressing prospect ever. You will be bored, you will crave the endorphins, you will fret about losing fitness, but you will also be giving your body the best chance possible to come back stronger than ever before.
I am not a fitness professional and so cannot possibly give specific post-recovery training advice. But I can point out a few positives to your recovery period to help keep you feeling sane (this comes from personal experience, believe me).
- You will train again. And you will return gradually and with due care, which actually in turn helps build stamina/endurance rather than just hammering the treadmill for hours on end as soon as you’re given the green light to do so.
- You will discover cross-training. If you’re a runner, you might have to start using the bike or swimming for a while. Multi-disciplinary training will transform your abilities, aid fat loss (yes, weight gain can happen in recovery it ain’t the end of the world) and give you new found motivation.
- That feeling when you can finally run, lift, bike etc again for the first time in what-feels-like-forever, will be special. My first long-distance run after being sofa-bound for many, many months was almost emotional I was so happy!
- Allow yourself a limited time to feel sad or unlucky to be injured. Then put those couple of days behind you and move on. Plan and research what you can and can’t do over your recovery period. Once I was out of plaster, I discovered ‘pool-running’ (google it), you feel like an idiot but it got my heart racing and that was enough to put a smile back on my face.
- Treat yourself for every week you have the patience to allow your recovery to happen. I saved a bit of cash and bought a few new snazzy work-out tops ready for when I could get back into the gym.
Even if you aren’t injured (and never intend to be obvs) taking time to recover is essential. Your body has a threshold and trying to push that threshold until breaking point simply shows a lack of respect for everything it currently allows you to do. I’m all for ‘no pain, no gain’ but if you’re ignoring serious pain signals or worries, take a step back and think about the long-term. You want your knees to keep you up and running for many more years yet, right?!
I’ll be back soon with some low-impact alternatives which I often use whilst training with Iron Maidens, so keep an eye out for those too. Until then, thanks for reading everyone!