A week ago I was making fun of my fitgirldays, stating they were behind me and I was done with spending my time at a gym. And today I spent my free sunny Sunday morning exactly where I thought I would not spend it, in the gym. Finding a piece of myself back. How did that happen? Funny story.
A week ago, as I was progressing down my pilgrim lifestyle, I planned to leave the pilgrim path for a bit to wonder down the beach for a change. However, instead of having a nice stroll in the sand and the water, I actually hurt my knee pretty badly within the first 50 meters I walked on the sand. Luckily, the knee seemed to pop back almost immediately and I could continue. So I thought. In the second 50 meters the same thing happened. Only now I could not continue. The second time was actually so severe I was not able to get off the beach and I had to sit down. I literally stranded. Luckily for me the lock that had been put on my knee got released as I rested (and cried) and I was able to get home by myself. However, it did keep me from walking this week as my knee was swollen and did hurt (like hell). As the week progressed I started to think what this is supposed to teach me? Slow down? Going to a physical therapist learned me that I might have hurt it indeed and that my muscles have lost strength quite quickly over the last few months. This left me kind of puzzled since I was walking so much there was no cause for my body to get weak (so I would think), and yet it did.
For the moment I just let it be, accepted where I was at and rested. I sat with the anxiety I felt coming up as I was falling down memory lane of having knee injury after knee injury and perhaps already thinking about what worst case scenarios could be. However after just letting this anxiety be there, even the worst case scenario didn’t seem so scary anymore.
Not coincidentally, and entirely unrelated I happened to find my gym membership card this week, after it had been hiding since corona shut down the gyms. I did not really take this as a sign, just a coincidence.
Until, I suddenly saw that the gym membership I had actually had quit, had taken its contribution. Furiously, I called them! And after my patience being tested (being on hold for 45 minutes while having the greatest headache in ages), they told me I will get my money back and I can go to the gym for four more months… That is when my day turned around. And that is when I decided to go give this gym thing another chance. How many more signs do I need?
So this morning I woke up and I decided to just go. Take it really easy and see what my body does and does not want to do. And as I got back into the gym it did feel like I was coming home a bit. At first I was a bit sad it felt that way because I was convinced I should be out in nature more and not be inside, out of contact with all that nature has to teach me.
But then it hit me, the gym is the only other place where I am able to just be alone and be one with my body. Listening to all its pains and sensations in order to learn from it and make it stronger. Just like I do in nature. So just like nature, being in the gym teaches me patiently what is bothering me. Being alone with my thoughts and being present in my body helps me grow. Mentally and physically.
Besides, my hypermobility and historical knee injuries just don’t really allow for me to slack off the way I did (apparently).
What do I think this injury taught me? It taught me and is still teaching me to be patient, get in touch with my body again, rejuvenate, rest, prepare and get stronger because there is so much more to come and I will need it! So I think I will return to the gym more often, maybe even renewal my membership for now and go for that #fitgirllifestyle again… Whatever helps me to listen to my body and soul, and get mentally and physically stronger!
So new challenge:…. Gain muscles (, strength and weight)… Challenge accepted..