Do you have an injury or illness? Or are you looking after clients that do?
The Christmas / New Year period is a busy time. But whether you’re busy relaxing or busy organising catch-ups with friends and family (especially now that the borders are open!), it’s important to remember that injuries and illnesses don’t take breaks.
The condition doesn’t know what time of year it is and needs its usual care.
Worried about time?
We know your weekly exercise plan has already been provided, something along the lines of “these exercises, 3 days per week, these stretches every day.” So, get the calendar and schedule them in! So, if you’re already in the habit, just keep it going.
Be open and honest with your Exercise Physiologist. If you are worried the exercises are taking too much time from your day, let them know and they may be able to alter your program for the holidays to focus on the absolute essentials that will help prevent you going backwards.
Can’t see your EP?
If you are going away during the holidays, you can still see your Exercise Physiologist over telehealth. We are very used to seeing people in lockdown now, and before covid19 even existed we offered telehealth to remote clients, so we are happy to provide appointments at your Mum’s house or at the Caravan park!
So, there’s some HOWs, what about the WHYs?
In case you (or someone you know) needs convincing, here are our top 5 reasons why it’s essential to keep up your rehab during these holidays.
5. Your improvements will go backwards
Our body needs exercise, be it for fitness or rehab, to achieve #gainz.
Yes, that’s obvious.
But did you know that the improvements require continued exercise in order to be maintained?
So when we’re considering an injury or illness, if they’re not being maintained, these new improvements in strength, flexibility and pain might go backwards.
Strength starts to decline after 2 weeks of not training, and cardio fitness decreases only after a few days!
We can look at the improvements as a block of ice, which we need to store in the freezer once achieved. Take it out of the freezer, away from what’s keeping it nice and strong, and it’ll melt.
Don’t let all of your hard work melt!
Good habits can be hard to build but easy to lose.
You’re in the habit of doing your rehab exercises, don’t lose it!
You might plan to have a break for a few weeks, but it may take another few weeks to get back into the habit. For the effects of this, refer to point number 1!
3. More Pain
The exercises and management strategies provided are specific to you and your condition with one of your goals usually to decrease pain (or other symptoms depending on your condition).
The metaphorical “exercise pill,” like all medications, needs to be taken as per prescription to work!
With improvements reversing and symptoms increasing, it can make it even harder to get back into it.
2. Time matters
The longer rehab takes…. The longer you’re in rehab!
This is important, because you probably have better things to do with your life? Which you can get into properly once your rehab program is complete and you’re able to manage your condition without help.
1. Your Exercise Physiologist will be sad
You may not know this, but in a non-creepy way, we think about you when you’re away.
Yes, it’s a part of our job, but we actually like our jobs and we care about you!
So, if your rehab goes backwards, we question our skills as an EP, have we done something wrong? The answer is, probably not, but we still feel bad. The magic of exercise (prescribed correctly) is that the body responds and gets stronger no matter what. We are pro at prescribing exercise for various conditions. We studied at University for 4 years and have years of real-world experience, so we can tell if the exercises aren’t being done properly.
So, then we start to question are we more invested in your recovery than you?
Both questions make us sad because we want to do a good job, and we want to see your life improve, which we know it will!
All that said… have an amazing holiday, take some time to yourself and relax! Just remember your condition needs some love too. #selfcare
Exercise Physiologist and Writer/Content Manager