Injuries… they happen to the best of us. Whether your involved in sports, your a runner, you lift heavy weights, crossfit, or you just do a whole lot of walking. Even at work injuries can happen, and they suck. I blogged my last injury and felt inspired to help navigate people through what to do when it happens to you.
It took me all day moping around, lying in the dark, wearing the same things I slept in and realizing my underwear was inside out to realize, I can be a big ole baby…
So I injured myself this morning. It was so stupid!!! My momentum has been phenomenal lately and this just put a halt to all my great healthy habits. I really do hate being down and out and sitting around all day.
The reason my injury was stupid? My knee slightly twisted the wrong way. That’s it… I don’t know if it’s worse or better that the same dang thing happened to me last month too. Now I have some experience with the issue but at the same time. From turning the wrong way? I’ve literally been squatting more than my body weight, and jumping, and lunging and I get injured from a little twist? That’s honestly the most frustrating part. But the good news is, it’s not horrible and not too painful it’s just there causing me to compensate when I walk and I know I have to rest it…
A month ago rather than resting I continued my shift at work which in all fairness I had no choice. But I did have the choice to take a day off from the gym and I did have a choice to not walk my dogs but I did it anyway. It took me over a week and a half to heal this minor injury in which should have taken four days MAX. So this time around I’m listening to my own professional advice.
I’m taking this injury as a sign. The only way to get through this mentally is to bring some meaning to it. When an injury occurs often it’s a sign from our bodies that maybe we’re taking on too much? Maybe we need new shoes? Or maybe there are areas in our body that are weak and need to be worked on or strengthened.
The fact that this happened to me twice now in one month is a sure tell sign that I need to work on this area. I need to scale back my workouts, lighten things up and start doing a better warm up. Rather than focusing on strength my body is telling me I need to focus on the connective tissue around my muscle as well.
So when you’re down and out decide what your body is telling you. Now that you’re stuck resting this is also a great time to start doing some research on what you can do to prevent an injury like this from occurring again. Or write about it too. We underestimate the power of reading and writing and this is a great time to get back into it.
So use your injuries as insight and motivation. A chance to do some learning and to practice some gratitude for being able to do as much as you have before the injury. You will then get back at it AFTER recovering properly, bigger and better than ever.
Now let’s focus on recovery.
Here are a few KEY things that need to be done post injury:
- Rest! As frustrating as it may be it is so important to get off that injury right away so you minimize the damage done. If you injure an area in your upper body slap a sling on or make one out of a dish cloth, whatever you need to do to NOT use that injured area.
- Ice and pop an Advil or ibuprofen ASAP. This will eliminate or decrease the inflammation that’s often causing the initial pain. With less inflammation you will have less pain.
- Elevate the area getting your blood circulating. This will get all the little components that heal tissue to that injured area quicker so they can do their job in healing
- Get your protein in. If you follow me often you know a lot of my suggestions or nutritional advice is aimed around sufficient protein intake. Protein broken down are little building blocks to your tissues which is also means it aids in tissue repair. So eating enough protein will help again your little tissue healers to that injured area chipping away at recovering that area quicker.
- Stay hydrated. Water intake is always just a must do. Hydrating all the functions in your body just helps everything work more sufficiently.
- Compress area if weight bearing is a necessity. I know for me I got to go to work tonight regardless so I will have to do some walking on the area. Compression such as a tensor or a brace will just give my knee some support while it’s recouping. Kinesiology tape is also an option, I like it more further in the recovery process. You don’t need to take a fancy course (although you can) to learn how to do this because well we have youtube now. Make sure to find a video with a certified physiotherapist or professional for correct information.
- Once 24 hours has rolled around start applying some heat. If the ice is more soothing you can alternate ice and heat. For heat you can use a heating pad if you have it or just a hot wash cloth will do (be careful not to burn yourself too!).
- Keep yourself distracted and stay positive. The more negative thoughts you have about your injury the longer it’s going to take to heal because that’s just how energy works. So think healing thoughts and take it as a sign that your body needs to rest. Your body will thank you for slowing down and do its job and you’ll be back to yourself in no time!
- *If you are in SEVERE pain and cannot weight bear or mobilize the injured area seek medical attention right away. This may mean a tear or break might have occurred. If you can still weight bear or move the area and the pain does not subside in 24 hours then I would still suggest getting it checked out.*
Once the injury seems to get better again take it easy when getting back into physical activity. This is a great time to utilize kinesiology tape for some extra support to that area. It is also a great idea to see a physio or athletic therapist for an assessment and suggestions on what you can work on to prevent this from happening in the future!
And most importantly don’t give up on your health. Stay resilient and consistent!
*If you live in the Winnipeg area I highly recommend Anthony Morrison at Integrated Therapies for post injury assessments. He works out of two locations 333 Henderson Hwy or 55 Waterford greens locations.*