Snow Lake

Snow Lake
Snow Lake Backpacking Trip

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Keeping the Faith While Injured

Sometimes it becomes difficult to maintain a fitness-training regimen after being injured. This article will help give you some ideas that will allow you to work around injuries.

Sooner or later all of us will get injured. Your long-term fitness level will not be so much determined on whether you get injured, but how you react to it. What do I mean by this? I’ll give you an example. Many years ago I tore my knee up doing martial arts. At this point I had a choice. I could give up and say my fitness days were over. Or, I could choose to work around the injury.

After the knee injury, I could no longer stand unassisted. But rather than sit idle, the next day I went over to my parents house and rowed their old aluminum row-boat across the lake and back to get exercise. This was less than ideal, but I had found a way to keep active. Later during the healing process, I enrolled in a fitness instructor program and started lifting weights. I learned all about strength training. I used this knowledge towards the end of the knee rehabilitation to help strengthen and complete the healing of the knee. Weight training gave me the benefit of allowing me to work around my injury while it was severe and then later helped me to get the injury back to a healed and strengthened state.

While living in Montreal, I cracked a rib. This made it to painful to run, and there was too much ice and snow on the ground to bike. I took up swimming and weight training to maintain my conditioning. I found that swimming laps did not aggravate the cracked rib much and it was a new way to work most the muscles in my body.

Later when I received multiple injuries, I found that practicing tai chi helped me back from these injuries. Tai chi provided me with an exercise that was gentle enough to allow myself to heal and at the same time kept me in the habit of maintaining a routine.

So the advice here is to keep moving, even if it is not what you originally envisioned as your ideal exercise. Based on my experience, the body seems to heal quicker from injuries if given the appropriate kind of exercise that won’t worsen the injury. Besides, you may discover that you like some new activity that you would not have considered otherwise. And you may develop a level of fitness in an area that was formerly underdeveloped.

The only other advice I have in regards to this topic is to consult your doctor or a sports medicine doctor if you feel uncertain about any aspect of your modified fitness plan. The goal with your routine is to maintain your conditioning and decrease your healing time with the injury. In order to do this, you must train appropriately. It is always a good idea to get expert advice to help ensure your success.