When you are used to spending a lot of your time keeping fit, a serious injury can be a nightmare come true. The injury itself is one thing, but there is also a significant psychological impact to deal with.
People who exercise a lot have a lot invested in their ability to get up and out for a workout. Take that away, and it can be devastating. So what do you do if you are a fitness fanatic that suffers a severe injury? And what are the psychological signs to look out for? In this short guide, we’re going to go through everything you need to know.
Don’t do too much
After a serious injury, it is essential that you take it easy for a while. While it might be tempting to do as much exercise as you can, you have to listen to your doctor and physiotherapist’s advice. Don’t push yourself too hard, and allow your body time to recover.
Your medical team will give you the plan to get yourself back up to speed – and you should follow it to the letter. You may feel like you are progressing better than they think, but you run the risk of injuring yourself again – perhaps even worse. The medical profession takes years to learn about the human body and know best how to fix it. Listen to them.
Don’t feel isolated
If you are used to going to the gym three or four times a week, it becomes a big part of your social activity. And, when that social activity disappears, it can have an impact. You might find yourself feeling isolated, which in turn can lead to depressive thoughts. While you shouldn’t push yourself too hard, it’s important to remember that your life isn’t over and that it is only a temporary situation.
So, get out when you can and keep up with your social life. Perhaps you could do with a wheelchair to help you get around, and you could even hire a portable wheelchair lift to help you get in and out of the house. Human contact is important to keep the spirits up, so don’t let your injury stop you from social life.
Keep your self-esteem up
As a fitness fanatic, a lot of your self-esteem will have been built up from your workouts. You are used to challenging yourself, and getting results. Without that ability, you can start feeling bad about yourself. In fact, the more committed you are normally, the worse it can be for you. It’s important, then, to try and keep your spirits up.
Challenge yourself in other ways – that book that you always planned on reading, for example. You could do a short online course on a subject you are interested in, or maybe even try doing some artwork. Keep your brain busy, keep achieving, and you will stave off some of the negative thoughts.
Well, with any luck, these tips will help you get through the psychological pain of being injured. If you can keep your spirits up, it won’t be long at all until you are back on the fitness trail. Good luck with the recovery!