Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Do’s and Don’ts for Recovering from Injury

Have you ever wanted to be able to do one thing so badly, yet it was the only thing you couldn't do?

There I was, a little over a month ago, standing underneath my pull-up bar. Like any other morning, I was planning to hammer out a few reps before starting my schoolwork. Only this day turned out not to be like any other morning. As I started my first rep, pain seared through my back and arm muscles. Thinking I was just sore from rock climbing the day before, I tried again. The result was the same: shooting pain.

I had never felt this type of pain before. It took me a few moments to wrap my mind around the reality of the situation: I was injured.

The strange thing is that I don't remember suffering the injury. It must have happened while rock climbing, but I couldn't recall an acute episode where the injury occurred. I just woke up that morning and had intense pain when I tried the pull-up.

Assuming the injury was minor, I rested up for a few days and tried a pull-up again. Searing pain just like the previous go round. The severity of the injury was beginning to dawn on me. It was going to be a hot minute until I’d be back to doing any pull-ups or climbing.

As a calisthenics junkie, I was majorly bummed. Just a few weeks before, I'd set a new personal best time for 100 pull-ups. Now I couldn't do a single one.

Thinking back, there were some yellow flags that an injury was brewing. In the days leading up, I was more sore than normal and had a harder time loosening up when I climbed. I didn't think anything of it at the time, and I obviously should have.

My eternal optimism wouldn’t allow me to wallow for long, though. I decided to take my own advice. I reframed the situation as an opportunity for self-growth rather than a setback, and I set to work on rehab.