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Recovering from injury tips

claireychn074claireychn074 Member, Premium Posts: 359 Member Member, Premium Posts: 359 Member
I managed to badly sprain my ankle 8 weeks ago (hopefully a partial tear and not a full one). I am not known for being a patient person but I have been SO good. Have used my crutches, done my mobility exercises, and doing revised workouts as programmed by my coach. Close to getting off the crutches now and I am tempted to rush headlong back into full training (recipe for disaster).

What have you lot done to mentally keep going slooooowly through a successful recovery?

Replies

  • SummerSkierSummerSkier Member, Premium Posts: 1,583 Member Member, Premium Posts: 1,583 Member
    make a plan. Write it down. Stick to it. I sprained my knee 12 days ago and it is only now starting to feel almost normal. (obviously not as bad a sprain as your ankle). But I suspect at least another 2 weeks to get back to being able to run freely again. And then time to build up slowly. I think the ONLY way to keep yourself from overdoing it is to create the recovery plan and work with it. I would also make sure that if anything you go slower and your plan AND never faster.
  • NovusDiesNovusDies Member, Premium Posts: 8,322 Member Member, Premium Posts: 8,322 Member
    make a plan. Write it down. Stick to it. I sprained my knee 12 days ago and it is only now starting to feel almost normal. (obviously not as bad a sprain as your ankle). But I suspect at least another 2 weeks to get back to being able to run freely again. And then time to build up slowly. I think the ONLY way to keep yourself from overdoing it is to create the recovery plan and work with it. I would also make sure that if anything you go slower and your plan AND never faster.

    And label the plan "How NOT to spend another 8 or more weeks recovering"

    Also, keep it supported with wraps or similar LONG after you think you need it.

  • claireychn074claireychn074 Member, Premium Posts: 359 Member Member, Premium Posts: 359 Member
    Really good advice - I’m just so over this after 8 weeks 😢
  • sijomialsijomial Member Posts: 16,960 Member Member Posts: 16,960 Member
    What have you lot done to mentally keep going slooooowly through a successful recovery?

    Pleaded with the surgeon to let me out of hospital early as I could do bed rest just as well at home as I could do on the ward and as I came into hospital on crutches I was safe to go out on crutches if I was sensible.
    Next day ripped out all the sutures in the gym trying to get the knee that had been bent for 3 months straight in 30 minutes.

    But this might help you..... Something my (very angry!) physio said to me resonated with me ever since.
    "When you badly reinjure then your recovery doesn't just go back to zero - think more like doubling your original recovery time."

    A displaced AC joint July last year was a real trial of my limited patience. Every time I pushed my shoulder exercises in the gym I got a reaction and it took 6 months before it felt right. As soon as it did my progress sky-rocketed. Went from an uncomfortable 60kg bench press in January to a shaky but pain free 100kg in February.
    The repeated movements and gently pushing my limits and backing off when I had to clearly helped maintain something.
  • ChieflrgChieflrg Member Posts: 8,579 Member Member Posts: 8,579 Member
    I practice and coach self efficacy as well as proper load management.

    Injuries happen eventually & there isnt a stretch or movement you can do to prevent that. One can lower risk though and load management is proven to do that.

    I currently squat, bench, and DL with cracked ribs after being hit by a car on my bike and taking off their aide mirror with my rib cage.

    I've also squatted with broken toes the day after. Trained with separated ribs l. I've hit PRs the day after pulling my hamstring.
    Benched with a severely sprained wrist.

    One thing is for certain evidence shows we heal quicker as well as lower chance of the injury reoccurring if we resistance train intelligently instead of be fearful and just "rest".

    Some people are fearful, and that in itself is harmful to the psychic.

    I urge you to understand that if you are thinking "disaster", then you are guiding yourself for disaster.

    Be smart and hopefully coach is on same page of self efficacy and we can look past this injury.

    edited August 28
  • claireychn074claireychn074 Member, Premium Posts: 359 Member Member, Premium Posts: 359 Member
    @Chieflrg i have a great coach and he is programming loads of weighted mobility etc. Thing is, I am a compulsive over-exerciser so he genuinely needs to hold me back. I have a history of being stupid (walking around with an obviously broken and painful thumb for 3 weeks, distance swimming through my excruciating shoulder pain and self medicating with painkillers and alcohol until I caused a bad RC tear etc). So I have to think “disaster” to hold myself back otherwise I’ll plunge back in, try a heavy clean and probably break my blasted ankle!
  • sgt1372sgt1372 Member Posts: 3,635 Member Member Posts: 3,635 Member
    Allow your ankle to FULLY heal or you just risk another injury.

    Patience is essential.

    The same recommendation regardless of the body part involved.
    edited September 4
  • MithriditesMithridites Member Posts: 499 Member Member Posts: 499 Member
    Avoid alcohol and nicotine as they can slow healing.
  • cupcakesandproteinshakescupcakesandproteinshakes Member Posts: 782 Member Member Posts: 782 Member
    Address the compulsive over exercising. That seems to bet he issue here. It is a form of eating disorder. Have you had any therapy for it?
  • sijomialsijomial Member Posts: 16,960 Member Member Posts: 16,960 Member
    Address the compulsive over exercising. That seems to bet he issue here. It is a form of eating disorder. Have you had any therapy for it?

    Disagree with linking the desire to recover quickly and return to full training to eating disorders.
    OP hasn't mentioned food, eating or weight management.

    It's very common amongst competitors (and the self-competitive) to simply push their bodies harder than regular people.
    Those competing in strength sports are used to pushing their limits and accept the soreness and sometimes pain that goes with that.

    Motorcycle racers are notorious for what seems an almost reckless disregard for their bodies and aiming for ludicrous recovery timescales. Sometimes that goes wrong Marc Marquez (MotoGP) has lost his entire season by reinjuring himself. Vigorous push ups two days after breaking his humerus were probably a mistake (and other training which is being kept secret, no-one believes the press release about damaging the titanium plate by opening a door!) but other riders have won world championship by rushing their recovery and accepting the pain that comes with that choice.

    I've still got that racer's detachment about my body (regarding your body as a tool not as me) so when I crashed at high speed 14 miles into a Century ride I evaluated my injuries in exactly the same way as I evaluated the damage to my bike. I knew from previous experience that a displaced clavicle and torn medial ligament were going to hurt but I also knew that carrying on wouldn't make the injuries worse and the event was important to me. Doing lasting damage was my criteria in my decision making, not the discomfort involved.
  • cupcakesandproteinshakescupcakesandproteinshakes Member Posts: 782 Member Member Posts: 782 Member
    sijomial wrote: »
    Address the compulsive over exercising. That seems to bet he issue here. It is a form of eating disorder. Have you had any therapy for it?

    Disagree with linking the desire to recover quickly and return to full training to eating disorders.
    OP hasn't mentioned food, eating or weight management.

    It's very common amongst competitors (and the self-competitive) to simply push their bodies harder than regular people.
    Those competing in strength sports are used to pushing their limits and accept the soreness and sometimes pain that goes with that.

    Motorcycle racers are notorious for what seems an almost reckless disregard for their bodies and aiming for ludicrous recovery timescales. Sometimes that goes wrong Marc Marquez (MotoGP) has lost his entire season by reinjuring himself. Vigorous push ups two days after breaking his humerus were probably a mistake (and other training which is being kept secret, no-one believes the press release about damaging the titanium plate by opening a door!) but other riders have won world championship by rushing their recovery and accepting the pain that comes with that choice.

    I've still got that racer's detachment about my body (regarding your body as a tool not as me) so when I crashed at high speed 14 miles into a Century ride I evaluated my injuries in exactly the same way as I evaluated the damage to my bike. I knew from previous experience that a displaced clavicle and torn medial ligament were going to hurt but I also knew that carrying on wouldn't make the injuries worse and the event was important to me. Doing lasting damage was my criteria in my decision making, not the discomfort involved.
    We can disagree that’s fine by me.
  • SummerSkierSummerSkier Member, Premium Posts: 1,583 Member Member, Premium Posts: 1,583 Member
    OP how are you doing now? I managed to "retwist" my knee at the barn a little bit 2 days ago and we are not quite back to square one at 3 weeks post injury but I can tell that it was a set back. I wasn't doing anything outrageous just stumbled over a pallet hidden in the hay.

    And I was just starting to get back to doing a little runs interspersed with mostly walking. sigh. But patience is my middle name.
  • claireychn074claireychn074 Member, Premium Posts: 359 Member Member, Premium Posts: 359 Member
    @SummerSkier it’s slow progress but I’m just about off the crutches now (9 weeks). Coach has moved me onto seated weighted calf raises and drops, and I’m doing BW glute raises.I've been doing serious upper body hypertrophy but I’ve defo lost glute and calf strength. Think more strengthening and proprioception is on the cards before I can train fully - apparently this is the dangerous phase, as the lack of pain could enable me to want to load it but the muscles are weak! Really annoying but I don’t want to reinsure myself, and I admire you for being patient!
  • claireychn074claireychn074 Member, Premium Posts: 359 Member Member, Premium Posts: 359 Member
    Address the compulsive over exercising. That seems to bet he issue here. It is a form of eating disorder. Have you had any therapy for it?

    Um I don’t have an eating disorder 😳 I mean I can demolish a protein shake after training and I’m partial to roast chicken with crispy skin, but I’m pretty sure that’s normal!
  • claireychn074claireychn074 Member, Premium Posts: 359 Member Member, Premium Posts: 359 Member
    sijomial wrote: »
    [quote="cupcakesandproteinshakes;c-45314689

    It's very common amongst competitors (and the self-competitive) to simply push their bodies harder than regular people.
    Those competing in strength sports are used to pushing their limits and accept the soreness and sometimes pain that goes with that.

    Yep - thank you @sijomial, spot on. I used to compete in martial arts (and I was a coach). Breaking boards, for instance, hurts. So does being knocked to the ground in a fight. But you have to get through that if you want to win. I’m just an average middle aged (if stubborn) person who refuses to give up.
  • sal10851sal10851 Member Posts: 68 Member Member Posts: 68 Member
    I'm a runner and I quickly wear out my mileage. When that happens I have to go for walks instead and I hate it. The whole time I fight the urge not to run but if I don't take my rest days I get terrible blisters and then I can't do anything for days. So I learned to just pace myself.
  • astod4astod4 Member Posts: 4 Member Member Posts: 4 Member
    I’m a physical therapy student and one thing I’ve been learning is that each person recovers at a different pace. Listen to your body and recognize when you are over doing it. It can be frustrating because you want to get up and going all out, but as someone mentioned in the thread above, when you re-aggravate your injury you prolong your recovery. I would also recommend strengthening your ankles side to side (frontal plane) rather than just doing calf raises (sagittal plane). Your ankle is more prone to injury in the frontal plane anyways. You could do this by doing balance exercises on one foot for 30-60 seconds, or as tolerated, for 3-4 sets. These are best done bilaterally (both legs).
  • SummerSkierSummerSkier Member, Premium Posts: 1,583 Member Member, Premium Posts: 1,583 Member
    @claireychn074 how is your recovery progressing? I am 5 weeks post sprain today and feeling pretty strong again. One thing I have noticed about my program this time is that I have been gauging progress not only by how it feels during and post workout but also how fast recovery is post workout and 24 hrs in.

    I never really used to pay attention to that when I was injured in the past. But using that as a gauge to back off or continue progress has really helped. I mean most of us have been thru physical therapy torture for an injury and it's not usually a PLEASANT experience. Of course those are professionals.

  • claireychn074claireychn074 Member, Premium Posts: 359 Member Member, Premium Posts: 359 Member
    @SummerSkier Hiya! It’s going well, minimal discomfort now and hardly swelling. Problem is I want to start yomping over the fields with my dog and my coach has shouted at me. Apparently this is the real danger zone: the lack of pain feels like I can do everything but my ankle and foot is weak so I could twist it easily. My coach is going slower than I want but I trust him - he got me through my torn rotator cuff and abdominal surgery complications. I admit I might be “slightly” impatient 🤣. Don’t know how old you are, but I also think I heal a little slower now I’m in my late 40s. I’m sure I bounced back quicker when I was in my 20s!

    You using ice or painkillers of anything?
  • SummerSkierSummerSkier Member, Premium Posts: 1,583 Member Member, Premium Posts: 1,583 Member
    LOL.. Yes it's hard to not just go all out but your coach sounds amazing and I am glad you are listening to his advice. You have had quite a few set backs so you do know the drill. Me - Im 62 so if you think things heal slower in your late 40's just wait till your 60's... :p When I first injured I started out pretty heavily on the IBU and ICE but over time I switched to topical antiinflam and only sporadic icing. Since I am starting to push myself on runs again I am not taking anything nor icing at this point to make sure I am not masking any weakness. I must say that altho the knee feels pretty good after 5 weeks of min running my quad sure got weaker. wow.

    Happy for your good update and take care and by this time next month you will probably be saying injury to ankle? what injury!! B)
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