Pain, head-games, and gym-wars...on my way to take care of me!


I had a moment this month....it was a deciding moment...a turning point. I am so exited to be on this side of the moment that I felt the need to share. See, about month ago, I strained a few muscles in my upper back. It was pretty painful to say the least. What can I say...I'm not as young as I used to be.

Anyway I'm on my way back to the gym after a month off. So what right? Wrong, this is a huge deal for me. See the gym and my back have history...the kind that makes you walk away and never return. Let me explain. About 5 years ago, I hurt my back doing burpees at a boot camp. It wasn't so bad at first, but then I developed a really bad case of sciatica on my right side. For weeks I had shooting pains that ran from my butt to my toes. It was the kind of pain that dropped me to the floor. I developed numbness in my right calf and weakness in my right foot. I had trouble walking...never really sure if my leg or foot would work right.

After a few rounds of meds (e.g., muscle relaxers, anti-inflammatory's, and narcotics for pain), physical therapy, chiropractic adjustment, and therapeutic massage, I was better in terms of pain. But I was also broke $$$$! I think the worst part of it though...was that I was deathly afraid of the gym...and I didn't trust anyone in the personal training profession. This however only worked against me because my muscles got weaker and weaker over the next few...wait for it...years! That's right, I didn't go to the gym for a few years. I just didn't trust it. It didn't feel safe to me. And when I tried simple things like walking groups, I would suffer because my core (e.g., back, stomach, and butt muscles) was so weak. I remember joining a running club with the intent of walking for the first few months and working my way up to running. I bought new shoes and gear. I was ready. I also remember struggling to get out of my car after the first walk...and crawling up the stairs to my bedroom...and crying on the floor because of the pain. Yeah...if is sounds like it sucked...it's because it did.

Last summer, I decided to go back to the gym...to try again. I realized that my body was slowly declining and that I needed to do something about it. I had no intention of missing out on my life because I was out of shape...or physically too weak to have any fun. I joined an elite gym in the Atlanta area and started working with a trainer. I told her all of my issues...and even cried a few times as I worked my way back to gym-life. I'm a cry-baby, so this is just my way. Better out than in right...lol.
Anyway, I had been working out for about six months and was feeling really strong when I hurt my back...again. To say that I was distraught was an understatement. Aside from the pain and the physical healing process, I was wrestling with fear in my mind. Fear of going back to the gym...fear of trusting gym-people again...fear of being overwhelmed by an injury like before. It wasn't a good look. But somehow...I made it through.

The conversation with myself and decision to go back to the gym this time looked like this..."girl you ain't no punk"..."you can't let this shut you down"..."you still have a triathlon to run this year"..."you still want to go to the mission field"...."you still want to be able to travel with you future husband"...."you still want to play with your kids (the future ones)"..."you still got life to live"...you gotta fight for you!"

And so...I am on my way to the gym to do just that...fight for me.

Love y'all!

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