Last night I got some really terrible news. It’s not the right time to provide details in such a public way so I’m asking, carte blanche, for prayers for my family. I know that God has a plan for everything and will use even the worst situations for His glory. We (I) just have to trust Him. Psalm 56:3 “When I am afraid, I put my trust in you.”
I had today’s post written, I just needed to add pictures, but after speaking to my family making the post ‘pretty’ just really seemed pretty meaningless. I decided to go ahead a share it but I apologize for not making it ‘pretty’ with pictures and everything.
Generally speaking, I’m a bad listener. I’m not talking about in conversation with others; I have no problems there. What I’m talking about is listening to myself. My husband and parents would call it being hard headed. I would call it selective hearing. I selectively choose to listen to the good/fun things while disregarding warning signs.
Case in point…I’m incredibly hard on my body. I always have been. If you were to take all the x-rays I’ve had during my life (mostly when I was a kid) and duplicate them, you would have an entire Gina in black and white. Grace is not my middle name but at least I have some great stories to tell and scars to show.
As I get older, I appreciate more and more that I only get one body and, until cloning body parts becomes legal (kidding), I need to take care of said body.
Admittedly, it’s really easy for me to type this ‘listen to your body’ stuff but it’s a whole different scenario getting me to take my own advice. I suffer from the dreadful KCTPB syndrome; better known as the Kettle Calling the Pot Black. If you tell me about any sports related ailment, I’m the first one to tell you to back off, take it easy, or even *gasp* go to a doctor.
Yep, I’m the queen of disregarding warning signs and, for some reason, I always think I know better. That logic completely failed me this weekend during the 18 mile run. Here it is several days later and I’m still nursing some residual pain in my left foot because my running shoes had too many miles on them. I’m taking it easier this week but it’s a bit to little too late.
Warning signs are our body’s natural defense mechanism to keep us from doing stupid things. By ignoring the signs we’re practically begging injuries to occur. So how do we learn to listen? This is difficult at first, particularly if you’re getting into a new sport. Muscle aches and pains are just part of life but there is a big difference between a ‘hurts so good’ and a ‘ouch, don’t touch that spot again’ pain. So here are my tips for learning to listen / injury avoidance for runners. Please keep in mind that I’m not a doctor, these are just tips that work for me.
Gina’s Common Sense, Injury Avoidance Tips:
- Stretch, stretch, stretch. And then stretch some more.; both before and after runs. Keep in mind that it’s typically recommended not using static stretches before runs.
- Cross train. Running is an incredibly high impact sport. If all you do is run you’re going to end up injured. By adding low impact training days into your schedule you still get the cardio benefit but allow for recovery.
- Strength train. A muscle imbalance is a common cause for aches and pains but this imbalance can be addressed through strength training.
- Recover. Don’t be afraid to take a day off. You will not lose fitness by missing a few days of running.
- Use the R.I.C.E. (rest, ice, compress, elevate) method if you feel anything unusual lingering soreness. If anything is incredibly tender to the touch or you take a few days off and the pain still doesn’t go away, consider scheduling an appointment with a doctor, preferably one that is familiar with sports related injuries.
Confession time….Out of those 5 tips, I’m seriously lacking on 4 of them. I apparently need to take my own advice.
Question: What are your ‘must do’ injury avoidance tips?