My story as an athlete does not differ much from any other athlete. I may have only ran a few years right now but I have had the typical problems that come with running. Typical problems I never knew I’d encountered before I started running. Sure enough as far as I was concerned I’f run out the door, build up and have no problems. Injuries, form, sneaker type, speed, distance and all the many other variables didn’t even cross my mind. I remember the first problem being a sore pain in the ass! Then I had ‘runners knee’, next it moved on to a stress fracture in the interior right tibia, then I had shin splints, next it was a pain on the top of my foot and next came plantar fasciitis (a pain on the bottom of my foot).
You have all read numerous blogs about recovery and the steps you can take to enhancing a speedy one! You know the usual; Static stretches > post workout meal or shake > plenty of water > Good rest > Sufficient hours sleep. I’m not going into detail of those because you can find them everywhere and often do find them everywhere.
I do notice that one key important factor is often missed. It occurred to me yesterday and so I began looking over all my training so far to date. I made notes of all the times I was injured and how long it took to fix the problem. I thought about my diet at the time, my stretch routines, sleeping patterns and I noticed one key thing that seemed to make me recover much quicker (besides being Vegan of course).
You have heard the saying that stress affects the body. If this is true then it stands to reason that happiness also affects the body. Of course we can not neglect the things that science already tells us will help us speed up recovery so keep on with those. Though I believe that if you can bring as much joy into your days as possible the smoother your recovery will be. Just try not letting that joy come from doing other strenuous exercise.
Here’s a very compact list of things that may bring you joy in-between sessions;
Watching Disney films or something inspirational or funny but not sad.
Listening to music.
Cuddling your children or animals you care for.
Eating delicious raw fresh fruit or vegetables.
Receiving a massage (if your lucky) or massage yourself.
A very easy slow walk in the park with lots of stops for Photos.
Drive by photo adventure. Here you drive around country roads and stop to take beautiful pictures along the way.
Meditate. Even just for 5-10 minutes on your days off.
Drink decaff tea or coffee.
Add fresh lemon or lime juice to your water for a refreshing and very pleasant change.
Have a mid day nap! or 2 if you find chance! This one can help a great deal!
Spend time with people who need help. Great happiness can be found in helping others rather than yourself.
The list could go on and on forever because there are unlimited things that we can do for fun and happiness. Just focus on bringing as much joy into your life as possible at all times. Even when you are at work. “how can I be happy at work?” I hear you say? That’s easy… by saying “I choose to be happy today and aint nobody or anything going to change my mind”. Be aware that if you are unhappy that is your choosing. Keep in control of your emotions unless you want to be unhappy. I don’t think any of us want that.
This little ingredient has helped me to recover from injuries and between workouts much sooner I feel. Funnily when I finally accept I overdid it and am injured, I begin to realise that I’m actually very happy about it because I have given my mind knowledge about an injury and then know how to deal with it and prevent it next time. It means that while my lower limbs are worn out my mind has grown.
So go ahead and be happy and please while you are at it spread that happiness far and wide and pass it onto all whom you come into contact with… even your horrible bosses. Who are probably stressed out to high heaven by their bosses!
All my love.