This week I wanted to share with you my recovery journey following an injury to my arm. Being with clients most days, I have to sit still and write a lot, which I find can aggravate my injury. Therefore I have decided to make a commitment to myself, and work on getting some strength back into my upper body.
I hear a lot of people (myself included) saying that they just don’t have time to exercise, focus on our bodies or work on strengthening our bodies. For those of you that have been watching my videos for a while, may have noticed that I don’t talk about exercise from a weight-loss perspective, but one of toning and strengthening your body and what you put in your mouth.
For me, toning and strengthening my body, means managing my injury and helping to ease the pain. This was a huge reason why I decided that I needed to get back into high intensity interval training again. I started my journey working with a trainer one-on-one and then with small group training.
Now, I know what you’re thinking. Personal trainers can be expensive and seen as a bit of a fad. For me, this was the best way I was going to be able to work with somebody who understands that I have shoulder issues and why I am trying to rebuild strength in my body. They also are able to provide insight on the best exercises to do to help manage and reduce my pain on a daily basis.
This training has already been so beneficial. I have noticed that while I am sitting with clients and taking notes, that my pain levels have been a lot more in check and not as intense. While this has helped, it still requires me to take time out and limit the number of people I am able to sit with each day.
While I have to think about how I spend my time (not sitting in front of computers for too long or sitting with clients for long periods of time) I also have to put time into taking care of my body and being able to focus on how I do certain bits of exercise and what I need to do to give me the best return on the investment of my time.
I think that one of the biggest things that people asked me when I decided I needed to get back to exercising again was ‘How on Earth am I going to find the time?’. For me, it just got to the point where I realised that by not exercising, I was forcing myself to have more downtime due to the pain. What I decided was, if I made the time to strengthen my body, it would allow me to require less down time and be able to put time into more productive things, rather than laying on the couch with heat packs and complaining about the pain.
Often we look at fitness or going to the gym as something we do only to lose weight. But we need to realise that we need to exercise to build the strength up within our body and make sure that our body can support us to do the things we need to do, day-in and day-out.
At the moment, I am fitting in my exercise in the middle of my working day. This helps me ensure I am breaking up my day into small chunks and not getting stuck at my desk. I also find I am still fitting in exercise such as stretching or yoga in the mornings because I know it will help me later when I exercise intensively.
When I talk to people about making their plan about what they want to do for themselves and how they want to incorporate health and fitness into their life, I make sure they understand that nobody else can tell you how to do it and what will work for you. You really just need to look at your situation and your lifestyle, so you can eliminate your excuses not to do it.
In my journey, my first step back into regular exercise was joining up at Curves gym. I loved the idea of the continuous circuit so you didn’t have the excuse of ‘I missed the start of the class, I will have to go another day’. This ‘no excuse’ opportunity helped get me into a routine of going regularly. I like to remind everybody that it takes three weeks to form a new habit, so you have to commit to something for a month before it will start to feel like a needed part of your routine.
When we think we can’t fit something in, think about the things you can substitute instead of just ‘adding’. This will help you utilise time you already have, for something more productive or more useful to your day to day life. It is especially important to your wellbeing to make sure you take time for yourself, because you can’t look after others if your energy cup is empty.