There are few things worse than getting injured, especially when you’ve found a training flow. You have the momentum, you’re seeing results and then, usually from nowhere, an injury throws a spanner into the works. Not only is it frustrating, but it can be extremely demoralising as well.
Thankfully, there are ways and means to get you back to full health, be that sports therapy, pain treatments, myofascial release, or physiotherapy. Rehabbing an injury can sometimes take as much focus and dedication as a workout program, but this also means the results carry the same sense of pride – you had a goal and you achieved it. The next step is returning to your fitness regime of choice and making sure you do so in a safe and smart way.
The first thing to keep in mind is that even after you’ve recovered from an injury, you still need to ease yourself back into your training. Your body may not be prepared for the strain exercise puts on it, so attacking with the same intensity you had before taking some time off isn’t a good idea. It’s always important to push yourself, but do so in a way that’s sensible and doesn’t feel uncomfortable. You’d be surprised how many people ignore little aches and pains assuming it’s fallout from their recovery. Listen to your body: if it hurts, don’t do it!
Don’t assume being given the all-clear by your injury specialist is a reason to stop doing any rehab exercises either. Hurting a particular area of your body usually leaves it weaker than it was, even after nursing it back to health. The best way to prevent issues happening again, and to continue the strengthening process after you return to your chosen activity, is to continually focus on it. You’ll stop the injury returning and will get your body back to where it was before an issue was present.
Make sure to warm up the area before training, too. It’s all well and good jumping on a treadmill for a few minutes to get the blood circulating, but finding out how to directly focus on a weak spot will help no end while you get on with what matters: working out.
Taking care of yourself even after you’ve recovered is a must to avoid falling foul of the same injury and allowing you to train in the way you want. If half your mind is occupied with what could happen, you’re not going to be getting the most out of your workout and, worst of all, you’re not going to be enjoying it. So be smart, take care of yourself, and take a little bit of extra time to make sure you’re good to go, regardless of any previous ailments.