On November 24th I went out for a run and out of the blue, felt a sudden, sharp pain in my left knee cap when going down a hill. I was able to walk home, but after I cooled down, even just puttering around the house was uncomfortable and I was devastated.
For those who don’t know, I’ve been an avid runner for all my life, its my favorite activity on the planet. My modus operandi has always been to use gym equipment such as ellipticals, power mills, etc, when recovering from a running injury (or trying to prevent one) and this has always worked for me…until COVID hit and gyms were forced to close and are still closed here in the London area.
Today I wanted to share my story with our readers as I think the lessons I’ve learned since November 24th can be applied to all of us in our daily lives as we continue to battle COVID, with a great deal of uncertainty still ahead of us.
The first lesson I learned is there is a solution to every problem, you just have to find it. Once I realized I was not going to be able to run for a while and going to the gym was not an option due to lockdown-induced closure, I jumped on my bike to see if a cycling motion bothered my knee. I was delighted to learn it did not.
£50 later I was the proud owner of a stationary bike stand, likely the best £50 I ever spent. This quick, affordable set-up fulfilled my cardio needs in a time when running was not possible, gyms were not available and proper cardio equipment for the home was sold out or on severe back-order.
To speed up my recovery, I kept alcohol consumption to a bare minimum, slept as many hours a night as possible and started seeing a physiotherapist for the first time. Turns out the problem was not my knee, rather the knee pain was my nervous system’s “warning signal” of an imbalance in my body that would eventually cause a larger issue if not addressed.
Fast forward to today with hundreds of physio exercise reps under my belt, regular online yoga classes and a slow re-introduction of running back into my routine, I’m now doing my usual 13K (8 mile) runs and feeling even better than I did pre-injury. This is lesson number two. Sometimes it takes a bad experience to unveil something better.
Some other important discoveries I made during this process is that riding a stationary bike is actually not so bad, I kind of like it. I also discovered a love for yoga, a practice I used to turn my nose up at, thinking it was a waste of time for someone like me. I discovered that I actually enjoy exercising from home and find myself wondering why I spend so much money on a gym membership. I discovered all these physio exercises combined with yoga, pilates and a general awareness of balance have taken 10+ years off of how my body feels when I wake up in the morning. I feel amazing.
Coming out on the other side of the pandemic, things will be different and a lot of the experiences we are having right now are happening for a reason. My running injury has led me to a healthier lifestyle, a realization of how important it is to be balanced in our bodies, a decision to ditch my gym membership and set up a home-gym instead.
New ideas and solutions were and are continuing to be developed during a time of COVID, solutions which are actually more convenient than the “old way” of doing things. Sometimes it takes a hardship to force a change our habits and as a result, we develop new passions and preferences. This is exactly what happened to me and what will likely happen to other people, companies and industries, including gambling.
Our world is changing and the future is unpredictable- even if we are not in control of the situation, we are always in control of how we handle the situation. Join me in embracing the present and getting creative to identify better solutions for problems that can no longer be solved in the way that they used to be.