As a fitness fanatic, you will understand the rush of adrenaline and the benefits regular exercise brings. Every day, you are used to bringing your A-game, rising to new fitness challenges – and overcoming them. And, your life is in a pretty good place. The fitness regime is bringing out the best in you, you have a positive outlook on life, and you have never felt better.
But then a serious injury occurs – and it can be a devastating blow.
All of a sudden, you are unable to do what you love, and the impact on your psyche is greater than you ever thought possible. What, exactly, are you going to do? We’ve put together this guide for anyone out there who has suffered an injury and is feeling low. Try out some of these coping strategies, and we hope that you make a fast and healthy recovery.
Stay on track with treatment
Most fitness fanatics will embrace their treatment sessions at first. But the problem is, you aren’t used to slow progress. In a typical training session, you are used to smashing your PBs, and doing incredible things, but recovery can be a long, slow, and painful process – in both mind and body. It is essential that you stick to your treatment plan, however. Keep turning up to your doctor’s appointments. Attend your sports physical therapy sessions. Embrace the social support that your friends, family, and training partners give you.
Don’t isolate yourself
You will start to feel isolated when you are out of action with an injury – particularly if you play sports in a team. You will also feel envious of other people who are still playing, and you might even feel guilty if your injury is affecting the team’s performance.
However, you should try and confront your fears, and try and stay connected to the sport you love. Attending a game to watch your teammates play can be tough on you, but it keeps you in the loop and shows you are still part of the gang. Engage more with non-athletes, too, and think about taking up other hobbies to pass the time.
Keep on top of depression
It’s no surprise that many fitness fanatics start to feel depressed by their inability to work out or exercise. After all, the way that working out releases all those wonderful endorphins into your brain and makes you feel good is highly addictive. Going without can make you feel low, and that puts you on the road to full-fledged depression. It’s vital that if you have black and dark periods you go and see a counselor or therapist. Even talking about your feelings to someone who won’t judge you can have an enormous benefit.
Improve your self-esteem
Finally, when you place so much importance on fitness, your self-esteem will take a hit when you cannot exercise because of injury. Again, this could end up leading to conditions such as depression, so it’s important to watch out for it. The important thing to realize is it’s OK – and normal – to have these feelings, but it is still advisable to get help. Speak to your doctor, and talk to your family about it – perhaps you can come up with some interesting new ideas or hobbies to give your confidence a boost?