Physical Therapy

How to Come Back from Injury

Whether you are a seasoned athlete, or simply like working out as part of your healthy lifestyle, it is highly possible that at some point you will be sidelined by an injury. Numerous factors dictate how quickly you can get back on your feet and back to working out.

If your doing strenuous workouts like the Insanity by Shaun-T you will know what I mean. If your interested you can read a review of the Insanity Workout here.

The key to a successful recovery is in how effective your care is before you return to activity. After all, when coming back from injury, the only way to be assured that you will not be back in the doctor’s office again, is to care for your body the correct way the first time. Here are some tips to help you recover, and ease yourself back into your fitness routine.

Rest

Although rest may seem like a no-brainer, it is surprisingly difficult for someone who is truly active to stay off their feet. It is important to allow your body the appropriate time to recover, and if the doctor gives you a specific window to rest, it is vital that you adhere to their recommendations. Ensure that you understand your doctor’s orders clearly.

RestDo you need to spend a few weeks completely off of your feet, or can you do low-impact, strengthening exercises?

The quickest way to reinjure yourself, is not allowing your initial injury to properly heal in the first place.

Eat a Healthy Diet

Even though you may not be actively working out at your pre-injury levels, it is still important to maintain a healthy diet. Protein will help you rebuild muscles and promote recovery. Having a diet rich in anti-inflammatory foods like leafy greens, nuts, fish, and fruit, will ensure you are maintaining a well-balanced diet that reduces swelling, and does not add to your waistline.

Stay Hydrated

Even though your activity levels have decreased, it is important to ensure you are still properly hydrated. Being dehydrated impacts the body’s natural ability to heal. Drinking alcoholic beverages promote dehydration, which can hinder your ability to recover. Continue to eat and drink as you would if you were at your top fitness levels so that you do not slip into bad habits and prolong your recovery.

Physical Therapy/Massage

Physical Therapy

Participating in physical therapy or massage is a great way to slowly build strength, reduce stiffness in the muscles, and promote blood flow when healing. Working hard at physical therapy, or frequently getting massages, has been shown to decrease the risk for future injuries.

Build strength

Once you are healed, it might be tempting to jump back into familiar workout methods, however your body will not be up to it. It is important that once you are cleared by your doctor, you begin your activity level at a slow pace. If you are a runner, start out by walking, and if you like to lift, begin with a lighter weight. Listen to your body.

You need to build the muscles back to the level they were at prior to injury, and ensure you have the stamina and endurance to complete your workouts safely. As you are building strength it will be important to note any changes in your healing body. If you feel pain or weakness, you should communicate that to your doctor immediately.

Yoga can help here greatly, it is a not strenuous workout will strengthening core muscles and priding relaxation at the same time. If you have never sone Yoga before here is a guide on how to start Yoga.

Stay Motivated

When you are injured it is tempting to abandon all of your hard work and dedication. Try to maintain positivity by reading motivational books, success stories, or tuning in to your favorite fitness podcast. You may also experience some fear at the thought of becoming injured again.

It is important to discuss all of the physical and psychological symptoms you may be experiencing as part of your injury with your doctor or trainer. You will find that staying in the right frame of mind will make returning to fitness easier when the time is right.

Healing from injury is never fun or easy. It can be frustrating to suddenly not feel up to your personal best. Take comfort in the fact that your body is doing everything it can do to heal, and by adhering to your doctor’s recovery plan, you will be back to activity soon. Ensuring you heal your body the right way the first time will prevent you from finding yourself off of your feet again in the near future.

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