Exercising through an injury

I’ve exercised while sick with colds or the flu and through severe monthly cramps but I’m always hesitant to exercise through an injury.  If it’s upper body related I feel comfortable working on just the lower area but it’s difficult to exercise through a lower body injury.  I’ve had knee issues, ankle problems and most commonly my hip injury.

The last few days I’ve been having a lot of sharp pains in my tailbone from my Tub Incident last December (see hip injury above).  Having pain in basically a core area makes it difficult to workout so I’ve taken a few days off.  With the end of  the thing-which-shall-not-be-named ending in a little over a week I can’t really afford to take anymore time off.  I’ve done extremely well and am hoping to come close to or meet my goals of losing 20 pounds and 12 inches.

For others facing the same issues, here are some tips when working through an injury:

  • GET CLEARANCE FROM YOUR DOCTOR FIRST!!!  (Sorry for yelling but this is an important tip). 🙂
  • Remember to stretch!  I know it’s boring but it’s necessary especially the older you get.  We spend half of dance stretching which is irritating to me.  I just want to get on with dancing but at 38 know how important it is.  I’d be pretty ticked at myself if I got injured because I was too impatient to stretch first.
  • For ankle and foot injuries try swimming or riding a stationary bike with one foot (awkward but hey, at least you’re not sitting on your butt eating potato chips).  Do push ups or pull ups, use the upper body machines at the gym or at home.
  • For leg or knee injuries swimming works well, too, as long as you don’t kick your legs (and you’ll have some smokin’ arms!).  Kayaking or any rowing exercises are good as well. Remember upper body!
  • For upper body injuries walking, stationary bike, ellipticals, stair climbers are all great cardio exercises.  Swimming may prove a bit difficult with no arms so I think I’d avoid that activity. Do squats and lunges to keep your muscles entertained.
  • Be very careful with back injuries and follow your doctors orders to the “T”!!  Cycling, walking and yes, swimming, are all great activities as long as you ease back in at a slow pace.  My mom has back problems and a pool- I just wish she’d take care of her back and use the pool to help.
  • Stop if you feel pain in the injured area.  Working through the pain isn’t always a good thing especially with injuries.  My 18 year old nephew tore his ACL a few months ago and had to be able to extend his knee 100% before his doctor would do the surgery.  He got it but had tears in his eyes so the doctor put the surgery off a few weeks (which devastated my nephew but was better for him in the long run).
  • Get creative!  Unless you’re in a full body cast there are always exercises you can do while nursing an injury.  I remember when I tore ligaments in my ankle several years ago I found a workout show on PBS geared towards the elderly (I hope that’s politically correct) and did the exercises right along with the woman. I refused to be a coach potato!
  • Most importantly (other than the tip about talking to your doctor) be patient.  In the emergency room last December they told me to stay in bed for a few days but my doctor extended it to at least a week.  On day three I took a field trip to the kitchen and back because I thought I was ready (the kitchen isn’t that far from my room).  I almost didn’t make it back and I slept for several hours after taking a much needed pain pill.  I think, like with my hip injury, I’ll always have issues with my tailbone (stinks injuring yourself when you’re old) I just have to readjust my exercises and workouts and not sit in a chair and give up.

Click here for other options and circuit training exercises.

Unless you have a strong stomach I do NOT suggest Googling ‘sports injuries.’  I opted not to include pics in this post.

Day 19…one, two, skip a few, one hundred!

I know I’ve skipped a few days but with resting Slacker Fattie’s hip there’s not much exciting stuff going on.  This is supposed to be a fitness blog so I didn’t think you wanted to hear about how crazy Friday’s are with getting four kids school, home to nap, off to a football game which requires helping out two hours before the game starts, an hour after it ends then going to Chilie’s to eat with the other band/dancer mom’s so you don’t look like a snob and not get home until midnight.  Or trying to get smallest child to dance two nights a week, me to dance one night another kid to baseball and trying not to forget there’s one more kid who isn’t currently involved in any extracurricular activities at the moment (thank God).  Let’s see, what else?  Oh, being responsible for two extra kids on the walk to and from school to help out a friend, being in charge of a war alliance on a stupid addicting Facebook game, cleaning (coughbullpoopcough), doing laundry and taxiing kids all over creation.

I know what you’re thinking.  Wow, how could you have time to exercise?  I do, I just have this motivation issue.  Slacker Fattie’s hip is not completely healed but after four years of dealing with it I don’t think it ever will be.  Skinny Bitch will  just have to remember the next time she think it’s a good idea to go on a five mile walk- to not to.  I’m going to ease into things semi-slowly but I can’t go too slowly because we’re closely approaching the end to the first thirty days and I don’t have much to show for it.

To remedy that, I’m sitting on the computer with six tabs open and playing with my kettlebell off and on.  This is working much better than playing with my Shake Weight off and on because I have a slightly less chance of whacking the computer screen with the kettlebell.  I need to really up my strength workouts since my cardio has been lacking.  I have a secret weapon however which I may reveal to you soon.  Depends on how much she decides she likes me and let’s me use her as a secret weapon.  Muahahahahaha!!!!! <lame attempt at evil laugh>

Ok, me and kettlebell are off to play together some more.  See you tomorrow!

Hip injury

Almost three years ago I fell while giving my younger two kids a bath. I was standing on the tile step in front of my garden tub, leaned over and my foot slipped. I landed on the side of the tub hard scaring myself, Hubby and the kids. The x-ray’s showed nothing so the doctor told me I probably had a contusion on my hip and bruised a couple ribs. I was off my feet for about a week.

Three years later I still feel the effects from that fall. If I walk around too much- like two mile walks or traipsing around Busch Gardens- it starts to bother me. Funny thing though, I can do a P90x workout and be just fine!

Last Friday morning I was packing to go out of town and startled my 130 lb German Rottweitler. He jumped up causing me to lose my balance and land on the side of the tub- again. This time I hit the backside of my hip but it was enough to jar the old injury. I was okay off and on all weekend but Monday morning I was in a lot of pain. Playing Just Dance on the Wii probably didn’t help because by Monday night the pain was piercing and very intense. I took four ibuprofen, got as comfortable as I could, smiled as Hubby held my hand and went to sleep.

Today I am frustrated because there are only four more weeks till my sister’s wedding. The dress is gorgeous and fits good but I want to look great. This is hard to do without doing cardio! I’m resting again today but did a little arm workout with the weight bar hoping to burn a little fat off.

For now, I’m stuck between exercising through the pain or resting until it goes away. We’ll see how long I can rest until I get antsy! In the mean time I’m left wondering, as I have many times in the last three years, if the doctor didn’t miss something. I know I’m getting older but I really don’t think a contusion should bother me for the rest of my life.

What do you think?