A few weeks ago I was gradually increasing my running distance, and was frustrated that my stomach was not agreeing with my training plans. Let me give you a little background: One year ago this week I was admitted into the hospital with a life-threatening gastro intestinal issue. Thirteen days later I was sent home with a whole lot less intestine than I entered with. Fast-forward to last month – I have been hitting the podium weekly as a Therapeutic Associate Physical Therapy – Nampa Sponsored Athlete for almost four straight months since my podium finish at Robie Creek. Yet, I only have so much exertion that my body will allow me until my GI system starts to slowly resist fully functioning.
Listen to Your Body
I preach to my clients daily to listen when their bodies are whispering, yet here I sit with a rolled ankle because I had to wait until my body screamed at me to get my attention. If we do not listen to our bodies, our bodies will start screaming, and that is when we acquire things like pain, injuries, fatigue, and many other unpleasant conditions. If we would just listen to our bodies – they are SOOO GOOOOD at telling us what they need, what pleases them for optimal function – they will whisper for those things.
So How Do I Listen?
Let me give you an example: If you felt some twinges in your knee during a hike, it might be okay to continue. When you notice your body whispering, it may just be your body asking you to adjust something. This is your chance to listen and change something – whether it be intensity level, speed, or even to take a small break and rest for a bit. But if at a later time during that hike, those twinges became more frequent and bothersome, your body might just be asking you to cease the activity all together.
If you listen before your body starts to scream, you can even have a PT take a look and assess if further damage could occur should you continue your daily hikes. If you don’t listen it is likely that a few weeks down the road your knee will be screaming at you because it became severely injured.
All of that could have been avoided if you had just listened when your body whispered.
So, listen to your body when it whispers, NOT just when it screams. If you aren’t sure what your body is saying – ask an expert!!!!
By: Ashley Kate “A.K.” Whittaker