Saturday, 2 November 2013

Ankle - Get a Grip! (Injuries & Dealing with Them)

I thought I would write a more personal post about something that has affected most of us at some point in our lives, be it when we were young and played handball - or in my case badminton, or now getting injured and not being able to go through with our normal routine and being (fairly) active!

For about two months now, my ankle has been inflamed. I have been very active and gone to the gym twice almost every week, and always getting my almost 6k Wednesday or Thursday on - it feels weird now to not having been able to do that.

I did have an exercise break for almost four weeks, but you know how you usually feel really good after a 30-40 minute work-out? Exactly, I missed that feeling. Taking time to yourself and spend it on something that makes your body stronger is giving, and it is so healthy for your psyche, as long as you don't over-do it of course... Hence why I "only" work out twice a week, when I am able to.

My "injury" (the "s are due to not really recalling having injured myself or put any excess strain on my foot as far as I know) seemed to recover after a few weeks, but then it got worse again, and it has kept doing that for quite some time now. I spoke with my mum, who is a nurse, and asked if I could maaaaaybe exercise just a little bit? A short run, just so I could reach that post-run euphoria that is so lovely? But no, apparently joint inflammation has been known to be an issue for some of my family members, and it is an injury that takes time to heal, sometimes only weeks, sometimes months. The frustration!

........I found a way to get a little bit of activity fitted into my life - dumbbells! I got two that are both 5lbs, or 2.26 kilograms according to the handy Google converter.

These to be exact!

This is not very heavy, and so it is perfect for repetitions and sets to improve your endurance, at least to begin with. So I figured out this little combination of exercises with the dumbbells that only focus on upper body strength - hardly putting any pressure on my feet as I am just standing up and using my arms mainly. After one set of that, I do sit-ups and squats, the squats do work my ankles, but they don't ache afterwards like they do if I go for longer walks, so I take that as a sign that they are getting a little stronger. Correct me if I am wrong though, as I am still trying to figure this out!

It might not be the usual cardiovascular exercise that I am used, to and to be frank - am pretty partial to, but it is a good substitute and I find myself enjoying it more now than when I first started, and I've only done it for two weeks now, that's a good sign! I always make sure to think of what music I want to listen to, and it is pretty good to have a 30 minute session whilst listening to your music of choice! So far Billy Joel, The Libertines and Queens of the Stone Age have been my favourites, as well as a Northern Irish band called LaFaro - so quite the mix there!

Thankfully I found an alternative way to exercise until my ankle is fully healed, but until then I will still miss my usual runs and cross training!

Do you have any useful hints and tips to what other exercises I can do? And have you had to deal with not working out because of an injury?

In the meantime, I will just focus on working out with the dumbbells, and cook up delicious food! I am so glad it doesn't affect rattling up some good munch! Hopefully my feet will be back to normal soon - fingers crossed, or toes even...If only I could do that!

- Jules

PS. All the images in this post were found in Google images. All the photos on the blog are by me unless stated otherwise!

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