One of the things I practice and preach is learning how to trust ourselves and helping us see our body as a whole unit and not separate parts, the mind and body as one unit. A few weeks ago I decided I was going to teach 6 classes with OrangeTheory Fitness a place I used to teach at in 2011. Now I was thinking what’s a few more classes to my day. Which in reality is a lot it would extend my Mondays to be from 4:30am-8:30pm. Which is a long day being in the fitness industry where I need to do demonstrate, have high energy, and somehow not burn myself out. I thought I could handle it, oh and I would also only have 1 day off a week by taking these classes.
I went to the sample class and thought it was great. The next morning I woke up and I couldn’t even turn my head to the left. I had strained my neck. Now some might equate that to the exercise class which I did at first but in reality it wasn’t anything more unique than I already do now. I knew my body was telling me it didn’t want me to add on any more classes into my schedule. I thought about it for a few days, talked with other fitness pros and my neck pain got worse with each passing day even as I rested it to the best of my ability.
Push came to shove and I was supposed to go to another sample class and lead my first actual class there. I tossed back and forth and decided this is not a good idea. I called my friend who is in charge of the hiring process and told her I just couldn’t do it. She understood and applauded me for saying no to something that would probably have fizzled out for everyone. The very next day my neck pain was gone.
It’s instances like this that we forget about how our body and our mind are connected. My mind was thinking well maybe I can make it work but my body threw itself into the decision process by saying hey slow down are you sure this is a good idea. Often times our bodies do that but we miss its signal and keep pushing until something worse happens.
Learning to listen to your body
- Is that muscle strain a true strain or is something else going on?
- Are you constantly fatigued and doing all the “right” things?
- Do you notice a seasonal shift in energy?
- Do you have a stomach ache after eating dairy?
- Is that 4pm cup of coffee helpful or harmful?
Do you need to have a tough conversation with someone or with yourself about how you might be overextending yourself to come back into balance.
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