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By: Chris Follett, Program Manager

Earlier this year, we had a walking challenge at work:10K steps or more per day. I took that very seriously…I got up early and walked, I walked at lunch and I walked after work. I was feeling great! That motivated meto examine my diet and removed all processed foods, sugar, caffeine, and alcohol. I felt fabulous. I lost 5 lbs. I increased the amount I was biking (for a recreational biker I made it a stretch goal to do 100 miles in July…I. WAS. DOING. IT!

Then, biking home from a personal training session one Saturday morning in August I took a wrong turn and my bike came out from under me. I caught myself with my left arm (and cheek!) The result – a compression fracture in my elbow and a severely sprained wrist. I was lucky, but it really threw a wrench in my fitness. I couldn’t lift anything and even walking hurt. My mood plummeted. I wanted to exercise but had to wait until I healed. We all need some recovery time after an injury, and getting back in the saddle will be different for everyone. Below are some tips that could help you if you ever find yourself in need of recovery.

  • Start small, but start! If you are able, walk a little bit, lift a little bit. Go slow at first and build as you can.
  • Inactivity reduces the endorphins you get from exercise, so you’ll want to replace them. Go outside if you can. The fresh air and sunshine will help your mood. Deep breathing and meditation are also helpful.

  • Do other things that bring you joy if you can’t exercise. Catch up on your reading, spend time with friends, or other activities that bolster your spirits.

  • When you can return to exercise, modify your regimen. Adjust the intensity and amount of exercise. Manage your expectations. Too much, too soon could lead to re-injury.

  • Eat right and try to get plenty of sleep (both will help your mood).