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Working around Injuries by Focusing on the End Goal not the Chosen Path

The year is passing quickly and I am already halfway through the second stage of this year’s training plan. Unfortunately, over the last two weeks I have had a succession of small but frustrating injuries that are getting in the way.

First, it was my shoulder. I was happily doing overhead press like I have thousands of times before and ‘ping’ sudden pain in my right shoulder. Never mind, I said, switching to curls and bent-over-row.

Then there was my the top of my adductor muscle (I’d say ‘groin’ but every time I say it my daughter has fits of giggles). Never mind, I said, icing it and gently stretching and avoiding weighted lunges for a few days.

At my level in Taekwondo, I have to spend a lot of time working on my flying kicks as this now forms a larger part of my syllabus. We’ve just gotten back into proper training after the summer break and I’ve been giving it my all. However, I didn’t think about the fact that a club training session full of flying kick practice probably shouldn’t be followed the next day by my own private session trying to perfect my grading kicks….now my right Achilles heel is sore. Never mind, I said, applying another ice pack and anti-inflammatory gel, it will right by next training. Well it’s not. So now I am doing squats and push-ups while the others and running and am completely off flying kicks for now.

When adversity and injury comes along it can really derail us from our chosen path. In years gone by, it definitely would have led me to a cookie and couch binge. Not these days. Having longer term goals allows us to change our route to the destination without abandoning our journey completely.

My goal this month, luckily, is to lose 3-4 pounds and improve my front and side split flexibility. These tactical goals will help me in my long term goal to continue on the path to Black Belt. I don’t need to do overhead press, weighted lunges, run or ‘fly’ to keep on this path.

What I have needed to do is modify my workouts to accommodate and rehabilitate my injuries while still moving forwards.

Sitting down on the path and giving up because it is blocked doesn’t get us anywhere. Changing our direction for a while, even if it takes longer, will still get us to our destination in the end.

How is your journey going this year? I’d love to hear about your progress in the comments.

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