How To Deal With Injury As An Athlete

Many of you know about my ankle injury from last year (if not, here’s a throwback) and how monumental that was for me.  I’ve been active my whole life, and it’s only meant more to me as I’ve gotten older. I was lucky enough to somehow not have a single serious injury until this incident a year ago, so it really did a number on me.  

I’m currently experiencing a bit of PTSD, because last week I rolled my other ankle and have been out of exercise for a few days.  Luckily, this is extremely minor (no crutches required-phew!) but still enough for me to be forced to slow down for at least a week or so.

If you’re like me and rely on movement for not just physical health but mental as well, you know how much injuries can put a damper on your daily mood!  As I’m elevating my ankle, I thought this would be a good time to chat all things holistic injury healing and how to deal with it. Because injuries happen, especially if you can be reckless at times (coming from the girl who almost broke a rib trying to surf non-beginner waves,) and it’s important to not let it totally derail you.  Physically OR mentally!


The Physical- Products, Movement, etc

*obvious disclaimer that I am NOT a doctor, and this is by no means a prescription.  This is simply what helps me, and you should always consult with your doctor first.


Arnica-Arnica is amazing for helping with inflammation and swelling naturally, and I use both the topical and the oral kind.


Turmeric– One of my go-to’s for inflammation anyways, I’m sure to religiously take it during injury.  It’s a good alternative for Advil, if the injury is minor.


CBD Oil– Seriously, what can’t CBD do?!  I am in a huge CBD phase right now (and no, it doesn’t get you high!) and it has really come in handy these last few days.  I”ve been taking the oil, as well as using a topical cream that is CBD infused. I can definitely say that it has helped tremendously with pain, and I notice it almost instantly after use.  I’ll be doing an entire blog post on CBD in the near future, but it’s important to note that brand and quality matter here. I love Charlotte’s Web CBD products, and know that I can trust them for the highest quality.  You can use discount code RUNNINGWILD10 on their site!


R.I.C.E- Good products can be great tools, but at the end of the day you must rest, ice, compress, and elevate if you want to heal properly.  There’s no getting out of rest when you are injured! It’s the most important thing you can do.


Doing what you can- I am absolutely emphasizing rest, but I know that at some point mindful movement is necessary.  MINDFUL being the key word here. Do what you can, but do not push it. This is not the time to test your physical capabilities.  Depending on your injury, some alternative movement ideas include walking, biking, and swimming. If it hurts, do not do it. You don’t want to set yourself back by making the injury worse!  


The Mental- Not losing your mind   

Gratitude- Focus on what you CAN do.  Continue to praise your body, even when it feels like maybe it failed you. Because really, it’s working very hard to get you back to optimal health! There is nothing like an injury to remind you just how incredible your body is.


Find a new hobby- That hour you normally spend working out every morning?  Use it to read a new book! Or listen to a good podcast. Or call your best friend.  Take advantage of this sudden “free time” and use it to do something (maybe from your couch) that you’ve been wanting to do but just kept putting off.    


Switch your focus- Trust me, I know that when movement is taken from you it feels like your world is over.  But what about all of those other amazing things that light you up? Try focusing on everything else you have.  Maybe you place much of your identity in being an athlete-use this time to discover more about yourself. Take the focus away from the labels and realize that your strength is so much more than just what you can do physically.  


Above all else, just remember that this is temporary and trust in the timing of your life!  Challenging events are never welcome, but our greatest growth can come from the most painful times.  

Sending you healing vibes!


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