A saying we hear quite often in life is;” Go Big or Go Home.”
Basically, the meaning of this saying is to give your maximum, 100% effort to something, or do not bother attempting to do it at all. This ideal can be a great sentiment to have with certain events in our lives, and some of the most successful people will tell you do act in such a way. Personally, I agree with the statement as well, EXCEPT when is applies to working through injuries or debilitating conditions in your fitness life.
The old days of pushing through the pain to show how "savage" you can be have come and gone, at least in my opinion. Granted, there are times you need to grit your teeth and, as I like to tell my clients, show “a little bit of aggression.” But that is not what we are talking about here.
So let’s get down to brass tacks.
We all have issues, things that may present themselves when we start or continue to be active. It’s all about management, and when to know what is what and how much is too much. The telltale signs of such things are what we are going to talk about here.
If it hurts when you move it, chances are, maybe something is up. Real simple concept- if you think to yourself, ouch or, why does that hurt, then maybe something you are doing is incorrect. The next thought is usually, what can I do? You may want to jump to WebMD and self-diagnose or outsource through the many outlets of the internet, trying to use the powers of deduction to riddle down the root cause of the problem.
My advice? Ask a fitness professional to help you with what you are doing. If the problem persists, a good fitness professional will tell you to see your doctor if they actually care about your well-being.
Knowing Your Limits
Now your doctor tells you, “Mr./Ms. Jones you have a [insert medical issue here], and we recommend you [insert solution here].” What do you do? Are you a good patient who follows the doctor’s orders (Patient A), or one who does not hinder their warning (Patient B)?
If you are Patient B and you do not listen and continue your workout regimen, you may continue to exacerbate the issue.
What do I recommend? Listen to your doctor. But also, do your homework and learn as much as you can about the issue. If it is something you can live with and adjust to while still continuing your fitness life within certain parameters, then “Do it to it, Lars!” (Heavyweights), with some help. Use that good fitness professional (the one who told you to see the doc in the first place) and see if they can help you build a program around your limitations.
Taking Time to Heal
Finally, if you have a “flat tire” so to speak, do you continue to drive on it? The answer is NO- you do not. You fix it and/or replace it. We cannot, by current medical standards, replace everything in the body (although maybe one day in the future this will be possible).
With that being said, if something in your body is broken, fix it. Do not continue doing the activity that got you injured in the first place. Understand that sometimes less is more and that practice makes perfect, not continuous repetition with no quality.
So go ahead and go all out and give your workouts that 110% when you’re at 100%. When you’re hurt though, overtraining is not the way to go. Listen to what your body tells you and if you are hurt, get advice from people who know better. Your doctor and a good fitness professional can be great resources, but you still have to follow through and take care of yourself.
How well do you listen to your body?
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