by Susan Madden- Member, Mom, and Guest Blogger
No pain, no gain, right? Wrong!
It seems as if these days, we are constantly running. Today more than ever before, we are bombarded with inspiring quotes, miraculous YouTube videos, and poignant blogs encouraging us to overcome our pain, stress, and anxiety by trucking on and toughing it out. But sometimes, it’s necessary to stop, think, and take inventory of what is really going on with our bodies, especially when it comes to pain. It is important to know the difference between muscle aches and when something doesn’t feel quite right. Often times we ignore symptoms because we are told pain is just another roadblock slowing us down; to reaching our full potential. But in reality pain is an essential communication tool that tells us that something isn’t working as it should. Ignoring the body’s signals may not only lead to unnecessary discomfort, but could potentially lead to a larger problem down the road. Whether you are a seasoned athlete or just beginning a workout routine, injury can happen to us all and needs to be addressed properly if we want a complete recovery.
Get a Proper Diagnosis
If you are experiencing pain that is chronic, interrupts normal activity or prevents you from staying active, it’s best to get it checked out. It took me five years to get a proper diagnosis on a shoulder injury I obtained from swimming. But once I received a diagnosis I felt empowered, and excited to begin a recovery plan.
Study Your History
Not only is it important to know what your injury is, but it’s just as important to know why it happened. Overdoing it in the gym or using improper form when running and/or weight lifting are common causes of injuries. Don’t be afraid to reach out to your doctor, but also a physical therapist, or personal trainer to get answers to why the injury may have happened in the first place.
Talk to your doctor about an exercise-based rehab program. Be sure to utilize physical therapists and even personal trainers, who can help you modify your workout routine while you are injured, and give you pointers to improve muscle imbalances and correct improper form or movement patterns.
Even when you are back to feeling 100%, make sure to continue your rehab plan for another few weeks. Doing so will help you continue to build strength and flexibility. Just as important, don’t forget to warm-up and stretch before and after your workout.
It’s easy to beat ourselves up and think, if only… Rather, use your downtime to reflect on how you can make yourself even healthier than you were before your injury. Maybe this is the perfect time to try a yoga class or if you are really laid up, why not dig into that book you’ve been meaning to read?
It is okay to stop, rest, and take inventory every once in a while, especially when we are hurt. While suffering an injury is never easy, it often leaves us stronger, wiser and enlightened as to just how amazing our capability for recovery and rejuvenation really is.
This information is not intended to treat, diagnose, cure, or prevent any disease. All material in this article is provided for educational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions you have regarding a medical condition, and before undertaking any diet, exercise, or other health program.