Injuries/ Motivation

Injuries Make You Better

What? Are you kidding me? Injuries make you better?

Cross-training can make you better at your sport.

I read a title similar to this in the May issue of Runner’s World and it really got me thinking about my plantar fascitis from a very different perspective. You know what? The author is right. Besides learning how to treat my various injuries, I’m learning different ways to train. With each injury I training differently, often resorting to cross-training. Cycling at the gym and swimming laps to maintain a minimal fitness level while I wait for the injury du jour to heal.

Through my running “career” I’ve faced several injuries: Stress fractures, IT band friction syndome, over-training, muscle strains, bruised toenails and arch blisters. Each one has indeed taught me something. My stress fractures have taught me to ease into a training program and my bruised toenails have taught me that when training for a marathon I need to buy shoes a half size too big.

Thanks to the article, I’ve now begun to change my thinking from despair and disappointment that I may not run this half-marathon, to thoughts of “how can I train better next time?” “how can I avoid this in the future?” and “how can I maintain my fitness level while waiting this out?”.

Here’s what I’ve come up with:

  • I need to go out and buy shoes that are right for my foot type (in my case a stability shoe)
  • Cross-train more
  • Increase my mileage more slowly
  • Listen to my body more
  • Do a better job at stretching after a run (including my feet and calves)

So the next time you get injured, or asomething sets you back from your goals, try thinking about it from a different perspective – consider what you can learn from it and how it can make you better.

Happy training!

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  • PT Girl
    April 12, 2010 at 12:16 am

    Good point. I learned the half a shoe size trick last year. It”s made a huge difference. I’m terrible at apres run stretches, but did my first hot yoga class today. Thinking of incorporating an hour a week from now on. Wishing you a quick recovery!

  • pamela ponder
    April 15, 2010 at 9:00 am

    so any tips for someone with a total knee replacement, I have had 2 of them in the same knee a year apart (the doctor messed the first one up by putting a knee in that was the wrong size and it got really infected) I have had so much trouble exercising since any tips would be greatly welcomed, thanks

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