When I first got injured, I was told to give it time and relax. I wasn’t prepared for just how boring it is to relax after a week or so, so I pushed through the pain and tried to do as much as my body would let me do (and a bit more). I remember thinking one of the first days in hospital, that I for sure was going to be riding my bike in Hafjell Bikepark during the World Championships in 2014. My brother and a friend came to visit, and long story short, there was no riding my bike that weekend. Instead I hiked uphill on my crutches to get a better view of the DH finals. Not exactly relaxing, but I did get some fair shots and was quite happy with how the weekend turned out after all. But pressing my body that hard that weekend gave me something to think about. The following week I had a lot of falls due to my right leg loosing all power every now and then, and I decided to try to listen a bit more to the signals my body was giving me. The thing is, I’m not good at getting bored. When I’m bored, I get into at negative thought pattern. So I decided to try to get back to work, if only part time, instead of continuing having to focus on balancing rest/activity all day. As I was not able to sit, I spent my days at work standing on my left leg, leaning on my crutches while working at my desk. When I started shaking and felt that I wasn’t able to focus anymore, I figured I’d had enough for one day and went home. Recipe for disaster. Again, I pushed it too far, and found myself totally exhausted after a few weeks. I finally got my surgery around four months after the injury. At the postop, they told me I wouldn’t be needing physical therapy after the procedure, and that I could expect to be back at work some weeks later. So once again I pushed it too far, and found myself back in hospital a month later. This time I understood that I have to do things totally different if I want to keep doing some of the things I love to do. So what do I do? What has given me progress?
First of all, I started physical therapy. My physical therapist has worked with releasing tension, getting better movement in the lower back and my right leg and giving the sciatic nerve more room through traction. She has also helped me find good workouts with Redcords that gives me more strength in my core and legs. As well as focusing on finding balance when I move. Balance has been key when it comes to releasing tension as well. When I fell over all the time due to both my right leg loosing power and the fact that I don’t have any feeling under the foot (so I can’t feel the ground), I built up a lot of tension giving me dizziness.
Secondly I started therapy. I needed to find a new way of thinking about life and myself, who am I if I’m not active and overachieving at work? And how do I listen to the signals from my body even when they’re not the ones I want to listen to? Therapy has been helpful to me on so many levels, and is an ongoing process that I’m really thankful to myself that I started. It feels great giving myself that space to reflect and develop.
I also started meditating. I had done a lot of mental training before, but meditation for the purpose of finding calm and stillness inside was new to me. It has been an interesting journey to me, so I will write more about meditation in a later post.
The biggest focus in healing for me is finding a balance between getting enough rest and getting the right amount of activity. I also try to be sure to spend my energy on the things that give me more energy and help my healing instead of things that drain me. At this point, I still find it difficult to say no to things that I know won’t be good for me, but I’m slowly getting to a point where what I need to do to heal is more important than what others would like me to do. I think that is the right focus also if I’m going to be the best I can for those who surround me. And it’s definitely the right focus to get me back to the mountains.