Monday, August 13, 2012

Healing After Exhaustion: Recovery Isn't Always Enough

While I've probably previously alluded to having gotten really run down and the fact that I've been working on healing and making a comeback but I haven't said much about what actually happened or what I've been doing to heal. It was during that time that I gained the 20 pounds I've since lost. I'm not going to revisit all that brought me to the point of exhaustion but I thought that over time I'd share some of the things I've found to be helpful in restoring my equilibrium in case they might help someone else finding themselves worn out, a little depressed and just plain old exhausted.

At first I thought that I all I needed was a little recovery. I've known that recovery is important for a long time. I first learned this concept back when I was running long distance but even back then I tried to cut corners and skimp on recovery. I figured that a day of rest from exercise was plenty.

Well, I'm here to tell you that recovery really is important and it becomes even more important as we age. Boy do I hate to write that - but it's true and just think about the alternative to aging! And yeah, you 30 and especially 40 somethings are also aging and need to pay attention to recovery.

Had I been smart enough to pull my head out of the situation and plan some days off and time for recovery my body might not have become so inflamed. Instead I changed my exercise around, tried to take rest days from exercise but often ended up doing massage on a rest day. (If I've ever given you a massage you know that I'm not resting when I give massages using full body passive range of motion.)

I really pay attention to this these days to the point of doing a body scan and putting off an exercise session if I need to. It's so hard to get into our Western Minds that rest can be as beneficial for the function and even esthetics of the body as exercise IF rest is what the body needs.

All that said, back when I was severely inflamed rest wasn't enough to do the trick. I needed a more comprehensive plan to pull me out of the energy hole I had put myself into. I'll talk about the elements of the plan that helped me from time to time.

The picture? That's Starsky our cat and Reilly our Connemara JR Terrier. I need to take a lesson from those two. When an animal needs rest they rest and they never EVER feel guilty about it!

No comments: