Taking a Step Back
So a few months back I had my alumni lacrosse game and it was great BUT I think I re-injured my shoulder/aggravated my back/shoulder. My upper traps and back have always been tight and I apparently had "trapezial spasms" back in college when I we injured and sick all at once(a whole other story). Needless to say, my upper back and shoulders have not been my strong point. I carry all my tension here and have always needed a hot pack around my neck and shoulders when stressed out. I have a real nice one that has a shawl and you can heat up in the microwave. It's wonderful and my best friend.
Back the my alumni game, the few weeks after the game my left upper traps, rhomboid and other back muscles and neck muscles were killing me. It was really tight and almost to the point of pain. Since then, it hasn't been 100% okay. I've been explaining it to the physical therapist and Neuromuscular therapist that I am seeing is that it is not pain necessarily but it is definitely severe discomfort.
Soooo I've had to take a step back. I was in the process of building up to a handstand in my yoga practice, I was trying boxing for the first time and I was ramping up my yoga practice in general. I wanted to get stronger and try new things but that changed quickly. Now, I can do a light upper body workout at most. Sometime long runs irritate it. If I don't stretch everyday, My back get fatigued and uncomfortable. When I am standing in my cadaver labs and hunching over our dissecting my back kills me by the end of the 5 (alright 4) hours. I've been trying to figure out what helps and what hurts... which is way harder than it seems.
For a while, I didn't take proper care of it and didn't stretch as much as I should. I have been doing my "PT" exercises but I didn't stretch and roll out everyday (especially with grad school starting and my free time being scarce) The other day I tried to do some more "Advanced" yoga poses and play around and I realized how much strength and confidence I had lost. I realized it was really time to take a step back and really recover. I am sick of being "uncomfortable".
Downward facing Dog is always a great way to start your morning and a great shoulder opener
I'm not injured but my shoulder and upper back are definitely not 100% functioning (how I would like them to be). As much as I hate to admit it, I have to slow down and take extra care of myself. My new goals are to foam roll at least 2-3 times a day, stretch in the morning when I wake up and use my heat pack when studying at home. It doesn't help that I wear a heavy backpack 4 days a week and I end up hunching over my laptop at the end of a long day but that is what my life is right now. I have to be more aware of my posture and adjust my notebook or laptop when needed. My lacrosse ball now permanently lives in my backpack and I need to use it while on my breaks in class and labs.
As much as it sucks to take a step back from an intense workout routine it's not always a bad thing. Sometimes you need to listen to your body and slowww down a bit. Sometimes it is exactly what your body needs. Sometimes you need a week off (or two) so you can kickstart a new workout regime. Taking a step back isn't failure it's smart. You are only as good as your body can be.
I'm hoping with some of these adjustments and self care techniques my shoulder/back will be feeling better by August (I have all of august off from school and plan on doing lots of fun things fitness and otherwise)/ A lot of it is mindfulness and finding new ways to stay active but not irritate my shoulder and back. Here goes nothing!
Eagle arms= Amazing for your upper back, you'll find me doing this multiple times a day