#227 Find the value in exercising with pain - DOC

#227 Find the value in exercising with pain

Today on the Doc On The Run Podcast we’re talking about how you can find the value in exercising with pain. 

Today on the Doc On The Run Podcast we’re talking about how you can find the value in exercising with pain. 

Every cloud has a silver lining. If you’re injured right now, you need to look for the value in the discomfort right in front of you. 

Whether you have a metatarsal stress fracture, peroneal tendinitis or an Achilles tendon injury, you probably have pain when you step on your foot a certain way, or when you do certain exercises.

If you have pain when you are exercising there is a risk you will do damage to the healing tissue. That’s why doctors tell you to stop running. Doctors don’t necessarily want you to lose all of your fitness, but they don’t want you to make the injury worse.

We as physicians have an obligation to make sure you don’t compound your injury by pulling apart the brand-new collagen repairs and disrupt the tissue healing process as it occurs.

But if you’re listening to this right now and you have been injured you have probably done some exercises in the past few days or weeks that cause pain. Most doctors will tell you to stop doing that. But before you stop doing that you need to figure out what you can do…and cannot do without aggravating your injury. 

When you are injured you have the possibility of making assessments with immediate feedback. 

It hurts to do box jumps. 

It does not hurt to sprint on a treadmill. 

It hurts to run uphill.

It does not hurt to run downhill.

It hurts when I run left on the track.

But it does not hurt when I run right on the track.

These are some of the most useful pieces of information you can gather, right now, while you are actually in the most uncomfortable phase of your recovery.

There are always some exercises that will and will not cause pain when you are injured. 

The problem is, most runners have very short memories when it comes to pain.

Being able to tune out pain is part of what makes us successful runners!

The same exercises that cause pain right now, are the very exercises you should avoid like the plague when you are returning to activity and really ramping up your fitness. 

You have to make sure that you are not going to engage in the activities that will cause a re-injury once you feel like you are healed and you really want to ramp up the fitness level. 

So if you exercise and you feel pain, right now, during the initial stages of healing, keep track. Make note. Write down the exact exercises and movements the cause discomfort. And then stick that list on the refrigerator so you can remember what really is going to put you at risk of recurrence of your running injury once you feel like you’re really starting to start running after you heal. 

If you want to get back to running as quickly as possible you have to do three things:

1. Figure out what caused the injury, and what is slowing down your healing process when you exercise right now.

2. Stop doing those things so you can stop stressing the tissue, maintain your fitness and keep healing.

3. Ramp up your running fitness and get back to full training without prematurely stressing those tissues in way that cause a re-injury and sets you back.

Remember, the sooner you heal the sooner you can ramp up your fitness. 

As you ramp up your fitness your most important goal will be avoiding the activities that cause pain now. 

So put the effort into creating a pain journal and identifying the activities that caused the most discomfort so you can reduce your chances of another injury that could interfere with your running in the future. 

Exercising when you have pain gives you immediate feedback and allows you to test.  

Test now. Think back to the last few days and the last few exercise sessions. Think about what actually caused to the most discomfort. Those are the important pieces of information for you to record.

Don’t think that you’re testing sessions our license to run for miles and aggravate the injury. Don’t be foolish. If something hurts identify it and stop. Write it down. 

Then you will be well armed with the information you need start ramping up your running fitness, without as much worry about sustaining another over training injury.

Pain is the best tool to help an injured runner decide when run. You don’t have to figure out what to write down. We made a simple Pain Journal PDF for you.

To print out your copy of the pain journal, Download here:








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