Working Out Through An Injury

As we’ve previously discussed multiple times now on this here blog, I popped my right hip at the bottom of a squat. No clue what happened (in the squat I do- I didn’t stretch enough beforehand and came out of the squat too quickly) to my hip. I was in such severe pain the first night that I couldn’t even sleep. I took 3 full weeks off from the gym entirely and tried not to do anything strenuous. I’ve been back a the gym for 3 weeks, but have been careful about doing anything that aggravates my hip and I have been going 2-3 times per week (all for less than 40 minutes each, and I do a lot of upper body lifts and run a mile in about 12 minutes every time I go).

I had a comment on my last post about how I should just hold off on the gym until it gets better, especially since I do occasionally go on (really short and easy) hikes and am still up and about all the time. I have always told people to rest with an injury! I tend to take time off completely when I have an injury. I didn’t initially with my thumb awhile back because I really though it was nothing. Once it was diagnosed, I stopped using it and started running.

So I thought to myself- why is it so hard for me to just not go to the gym right now?! 

I think the big reason really is my sanity. When I took 3 months off the gym for my thumb, I was busy! I was just moving into my condo. I went to Europe for 3 weeks. It was summer and I hung out with all my friends! Jon and I were in our early stages of dating again! I hate tons to do!

Now… I’m in Washington/Oregon alone. I have two friends here and one has a kid. They both work 9-5 jobs and also have lives outside of me (how dare they!). I get bored and I get lonely and I get grumpy. Those endorphins keep me going! I can be in a foul mood and that trip to the gym just resets me!

I also finally feel like I got back in the habit of the gym. I’ve always been really all or nothing with the gym. I either skip an entire month (or four) or I go all the time. There’s not much of a gray area! Lately, I’ve started seeing things other than CrossFit as exercise for me, and now even see things like hiking as exercise. It was hard for me to see anything where my heart race doesn’t really get up and I work up a huge sweat as a workout. I’ve been working on my overall fitness level in general and have really wanted to stay in the habit of going to the gym on a regular basis (whether that be 5 times a week or 2-3, I just don’t want to go an entire month or more without going anymore).

There’s two big reasons for that: 1. I really and truly believe in the good of exercise. I think it’s absolutely crucial to living a long healthy life and I see too many lives suffering because people didn’t care for their health (thank you, nursing). I can’t just preach everything and then do something completely different. 2. Jon and I have decided to have kids in the nearer future than we originally planned. I know it takes time to make something an actual habit (for a lifetime- not just a month long while I have time for it). My life will be crazy- working, grad school, and momming it (I can’t believe I’m referring to myself as a mom- weird). I need to make sure now that I will make time in the future to go to the gym, despite my crazy life, because I need to. I need to start creating a lifelong habit when my life actually allows for that (hello 36 hours of work a week with no other commitments at all). This is the least stressful my life has been in years. Maybe ever, aside from my deployment! (Thanks to not being a student and not working any overtime!)

We all know I used to struggle pretty severely with depression for years. I’d say at least a good five years, and there were frequently times where I felt suicidal. I absolutely worry about postpartum depression and know that in the past, staying active has really helped with that. So I want to know that if my life is crazy and I feel overwhelmed, that I will look to the one thing that has worked well in the past, and that’s being active. With the habit I’m creating now, I’m hoping to curb that postpartum depression (and hopefully that doesn’t happen to me, but I’m honestly going to be very shocked if it doesn’t) in the future.

So, as of now, because I have no diagnosis of what’s wrong, I can keep on going with my more minimal workouts. If I prolong the healing by a few weeks, then so be it. I’m not in a hurry to get back to CrossFit (that’s sort of a lie- I actually really want to go back, but I feel patient about not being able to for awhile) and I’m definitely not trying to run any races in my near future! I sort of feel like the overall emotional benefit is going to take precedence over the physical benefits of not going to the gym at this time.

This outlook may change in the future. I may get frustrated with the daily pain. I may decide I do just want to get back to CrossFit once and for all. But I’m not there yet.

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One thought on “Working Out Through An Injury

  1. People have different reasons for going to the gym, even if injured or if you can’t do all the things you want to do. When I was injured, I still went to the gym every day. I couldn’t run, obviously, so that was out, but I did spin, bodypump, or something. Going in the morning was like my commute to work and forced me to get dressed and be productive with my day- it makes me a better worker at my big girl job, the benefit wasn’t just for my physical health. I’m glad that you’re going to the gym to help with the depression- even if you just stretch or do some easy stuff that you can do with your injury.

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