The joy of testing your limits, connecting with like-minded people, and doing what you love is suddenly stripped away. During these uncertain times, it’s easy to get sucked into the pain cave.
But, is there a better way?
Can you take advantage of using mental training to aid in your recovery?
Joel Hatch, co-founder of Trail Manners a podcast series for trail runners, contacted me for an interview on just that. Joel has an injured friend who wants to know the optimal way to psychologically deal with an injury and what tools can be acquired during the recovery process.
I was psyched for the interview as this topic is close to my heart.
Because of my own athletic injuries in high school, my chosen career path was athletic training. For several years I practiced as a certified an athletic trainer for youth, collegiate, and Olympic athletes.
What I came to realize is that I not only helped athletes heal their injuries through physical rehab but more importantly I helped athletes recover from the mental misery of enduring an injury so that they could confidently return to play, which is one of reasons I quit my athletic training career, pursued a sport psychology doctorate degree, and started my business Mindset.
In the podcast interview, you’ll learn:
For a sneak peek into the interview, Go F.A.R. stands for Feel. Accept. Recover.
Feel: Honor the present. Injuries can sometimes be traumatic. Rather than deny your emotions and let them build until you burst, allow yourself to feel into hurt, anger, disappointment, and frustration (this is also true for a crappy training day or competition). Acknowledge the emptiness, despair, or confusion, but have a lightness on your face. As the adage goes, “This too shall pass”.
Accept: Pain is our resistance. Holding onto tension wastes precious energy. You can waste energy fighting against not wanting to be injured or you can accept your current situation and find ways to make the hardship an opportunity to make you stronger. Can you embrace the change versus fight against it?
Recover: I know how hard it can be to feel and accept (I'm better at swallowing my emotions than letting the surface), but once you’ve made these adjustments you’re in a better head space for a speedy recovery. For example, have you ever went into a training session and felt like crap? Did you show up anyway and found a way to move on…maybe even have a superb training session? You are practicing resilience. And you can drum up these resources, and even refine them, during the injury recovery process so that you are mentally stronger and more confident for your return to sport.
For more mental training tips, Click Here to listen to the 53-minute interview.