The joys of training for a half marathon means that my body has suddenly been put under a lot of strain, some might say “well thats what you get for trying to run a half marathon in such a short amount of time” or other negative lines but I would just call them dream stealers. I don’t regret my training or my time I chose to do it, it came at a perfect time within my life and I needed a goal to kick my butt into gear.
So from this strain I have unfortunately developed pattellofemoral, or commonly known as runners knee. The muscles are too tight in the side of my quads and are not being balance with the rest of my body, and weak glutes – ouch.
Cut forward to my yoga practise on thursday night and me telling my teacher about my injury, she told me I should just take it easy today and be mindful of my knees in poses, and don’t push myself.
Once we began to start the practise I realised my body was feeling very tired, I was fumbling in warriors pose, my lunges didn’t feel the same and my body just didn’t feel up to scratch. This confused me because last week when my knee was still hurting I was able to do yoga just fine, the only thing that had changed was that I had finally realised how much damage I’d done to my knee and let my body feel the pain.
I thought about this some more – naughtily of me during my practise, surely I am not just feeling tired because psychologically speaking I was able take my yoga class easy because I was given a get out of free jail card from the teacher. This couldn’t be the case, so as I continued to hold downward dog I thought about this some more.
Finally it hit me, somewhere between tree pose and forward bends. It was because I had finally stopped denying to myself my knee was hurting and was listening to my body and the pain it felt. I had no longer covered it over with a bandaid or was thinking there’s nothing wrong with me.
I was finally made to listen to my body and realise that it was a bit tired, run down, under stress – of course it was I’m training for a half marathon. But until that point I didn’t realise the strain I was putting under my body. The yoga class seemed to be my body letting out a big exhale, getting to rest and acknowledge it isn’t 100% at the moment.
You need to find that balance between pushing yourself harder and listening to your body, can I go a little bit faster, are my legs fatigued, should I stop? These questions are very difficult to answer if you overwork you can have negative effects on your body, and if you underwork you can feel like you didn’t push yourself enough, and might not change what you are wanting to change. Then it gets really confusing and messy when you stop and know it’s right for your body but that negative self talk tells you “you are just being lazy”, man I hate that voice!
This is such a hard issue to think about. You have to personally draw that line in the sand deciding is this just uncomfortable and I need to keep pushing, or have I pushed enough and it’s time for me to stop. Unfortunately like everything hard in this life, there is not perfect answer and only you know what works for you. Each person has their own set of reasons to where they decide enough is enough.
Next time you feel this happening ask yourself these questions:
I think once you answer these key questions you can then make a decision to whether or not you will continue, you need to stay true to your intention. This is the most important part. If you feel your brain speaking up again, silence it, breathe and remind yourself why you made that decision. If you chose to stop, you are not a terrible person you were just listening to your body and mind.
Do you find it difficult to listen to your body effectively? Is it something you need practise on? Let go of whatever guilt you are holding onto about what you should be doing better at, go on share below I’d love to hear from you.
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