When the body speaks, listen!

Posted: April 25, 2014 in Uncategorized

ImageI really have mixed feelings today and these mixed feelings made me think a little. You see, I went to gym and my workout was supposed to be deadlifts. Nice heavy ones for 5 reps and a couple of sets. Easy on paper, well yeah. Warm up went ok. Did kettlebell swings for 10 minutes with 35 seconds of work and 25 seconds of rest. In my 5th set my grip started going. What? I am 5 minutes into my warm up and my grip is already slipping. Starting to get annoyed with myself but getting on with my warm up. The warm up is supposed to grease the grooves so I am greasing. 

Come deadlifts, I did 2 sets of lighter deadlifts just to get going and get the feeling, hey, I am actually not rushed and doing everything right, but my body is not feeling right. She is tired and niggly and I can feel it. So right into my first heavier deadlift (not I say heavier and not heavy, I am certainly not lifting heavy when it comes to deadlifts, not like the big dudes are doing anyway. My workout is definitely their warm up…) 1st set done and my right hamstring is twitching, stretch it out, load the bar and go for set number 2. This time my right glute feels like it is tearing off, 2 reps and I bail. 

Now why am I telling you my boring story of a failed workout? While I felt like my workout did not go to plan and I decided to not push through the pain, I think of all those people who do push through the pain and end up really injured. So injured that they are out for months with torn muscles or tendons, or even worse, end up in hospital for an operation that might have been avoided. Ok, so you have a war scar and story to share with all your training buddies years from now. But in the meantime, you will be out for months, then months of rehab before you can bend over and pick up a descent weight again. Is one bailed workout then such a failure? I think not.

I really think we should tune in to our bodies a little more. We know when things are amiss. We don’t admit it to ourselves but we know. With all the pressure these day in performing sports and exercise groups, it is just natural for us to try and step up and show people who we are and what we are made of. We are amazing specimens and we push the limits all the time. Just look at sprinters and high jumpers, and that is just the top of our sporting mountain. Even the game of sport gives us big people with amazing all rounded ability. 

We want to be like our heroes, be it a specific sport or exercise in general but don’t let that make us stupid in our ability to listen to our bodies when it needs a break. A couple of days off is much better to handle (and actually, very body friendly because we come back fresher and more eager to perform) than months away from our favourite activities due to a body that just said no when you wanted to push it. 
It is necessary to rest and recover. Do it and you will be able to practice your favourite activities without aches and pains all the time. The body can only handle so much before it forces you to rest in, sometimes, ugly ways. Take the well deserved breaks and for crying out load, don’t ignore a body part telling you, hey buddy, I am tired, give me a break please!

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