Mindset, Uncategorized

End of 2022: Updates, Review, and Looking into 2023

It has been a number of weeks since my hip labrum update post so it’s time to do another. We are beginning the third week of November (somehow!? time is flying) and basically my hip is doing great! I feel like I have regained most of my mobility and range of motion (we are talking normal ROM, not “ballet approved ROM) and the pain has almost COMPLETELY subsided! I am able to get on the Peloton and go relatively hard – as hard as I want! But, not every day of course (no one should do that anyway). I am so proud of how far I have come with my hip recovery but one thing to update you guys on is my shoulder! I am not sure if I mentioned this but back in mid-August I was doing bench press and I was trying to do more than I should have (100 lbs) and I felt something off mid-press. Maybe a slight snap or pop in the front of my shoulder/chest region of some sort – but it was nothing dramatic and it didn’t hurt a lot at the time or anything. I did stop benching though and moved on to other movements. Ever since that day (around August 17) something was off in my shoulder.

Weeks went by and I tried modifying movements and avoided pressing heavy weight altogether but still my range of motion seemed a little pinchy and my shoulder just continued to ache when I wasn’t using it. I went to the doctor early-ish October to have it checked out because obviously the rehab I was trying to do was not doing the trick (I eventually ceased all upper body movements besides mobility and range of motion and bodyweight scapular work). The doc seemed to think I had a strained (grade 2) subscapularis (which is a rotator cuff muscle). She did all the various tests and ruled out labrum tear (thank GOD…which was why I went to the doc because I wanted to make sure I did not mess up my shoulder labrum, too!).

I have been going to PT now since then, and it’s November 14. So about a month. I will say my shoulder is definitely getting better – not 100% yet though, maybe 70%. One thing I learned with my hip injury is to give injuries about 12 weeks or more to fully heal – or at least to heal enough to be mostly pain-free. I am hopeful that by January I can resume training and be injury free! I am definitely making progress with the shoulder but I want to be very careful and slowly incorporate light-strength work.

Things I have learned this year related to training:

  • Give yourself 1-2 full days of rest each week (or at least 1 full day and 1 active recovery day)
  • Avoid heavy bench press of any kind, esp barbell, unless your goal is powerlifting (regardless of age, but more important as you hit 30+)
  • Bodyweight strength for upper body is under-rated (pushups, planks, pull-ups)
  • Give yourself ample recovery days in between weight-lifting days (incorporate yoga or mobility work, walking or easy cardio)
  • Lower-intensity cardio is underrated (as is walking for health)
  • Eat your normal foods on rest days, your body needs calories to properly heal from training (in other words, do not cut carbs on rest days dramatically)
  • Sleep is non-negotiable and you should prioritize it any way possible (cutting out heavy meals before bed, alcohol, caffeine, screen time, etc.)
  • On that note, Alcohol is over-rated and we should strive to drink as little as possible

I basically stopped drinking in the last month. I wasn’t a big drinker to begin with but used to love a glass of red wine with dinner. I would never have more than 2 glasses at any given time (unless I was at a wine tasting but even then I would space things out with water). I noticed, however, that even 1 glass was starting to affect my sleep. I would wake up every 2-3 hours and I would be sweating/hot, and congested. It was horrible! Even from 1 glass! I decided enough is enough and now my RULE is no alcohol at least Sunday-Thursday. Come Friday though I usually don’t even want any! So far this month I have had 2 oz of red wine (woke up stuffy the next AM and it ticked me off). I do not plan on having another drink until Thanksgiving day, and that will be it. I came to this conclusion on my own after some thought and reflection about why we even drink alcohol at all. Why do I want it? What purpose does it serve? I decided it no longer served a purpose and for me quality sleep is absolutely #1 priority.

Alcohol no longer serves me, I do not look forward to a glass of wine because I associate poor sleep and a stopped up nose with it. Also my mental clarity has improved since cutting it out – it’s hard to explain. Even the little bit I had with dinner was clearly affecting my mind among other things. I feel so much better without it. If you are teetering or interested in exploring cutting out alcohol as well, I encourage it. I am not saying I will never drink again, but I have drastically reduced my consumption! Friday or Saturday I may have a glass if I feel like it but that is it.

Our society is so obsessed with drinking and it’s kind of pointless when you think about it. It does nothing good for us – it only makes us feel bad and may make you do or say things you may regret (if you drink a lot, which I never did. But even a little was messing me up!!)

Now at night I make different hot teas, maybe have a La Croix or make sparkling water with lime. It’s the best!!! And I sleep like a baby through the night! SERIOUSLY, TRY IT. Nothing is better than good sleep and since that is my number 1 priority right now in healing my injuries and helping my body recover from workouts, cutting out alcohol is a no-brainer.

AS WE WRAP UP 2022...I like to reflect on the year. What did I accomplish? What am I proud of? What challenges and obstacles did I overcome? I urge you to do the same thing – it is helpful and confidence-boosting to see what you overcame this year. I overcame a hip labral tear, had to give up ballet, am having to work around an injured shoulder, decided alcohol no longer serves me or benefits me, among other things (stay tuned). I am on book #46 and 47 of the year!!!

I am planning and gearing up for 2023! I hope to train smarter and to avoid injuries (no more heavy bench press, smarter upper body training, continuing to train lower body how I have been). I hope to start learning Spanish (again) and maybe plan a trip with my husband. I want to get certified in pre-post natal personal training. I also want to prioritize meditating, continue to read books, and always continue to grow.

LASTLY…I ordered this new FIT PLANNER for 2023 and I am so excited about it. The reason I love it is that it has space to plan your meals for each week (and macro counts if you desire), it also has areas to jot down things you accomplished over the month that you are proud of, a whole monthly overview, to-do for each day of the week, hours slept, what your mood is, habit tracking, goals for the month, etc.! It is fabulous! It even has a clean recipe at the end of each month! One I already tried was the cinnamon roll baked oatmeal (I did add some extra protein powder to my version though, and that recipe post is coming soon). I love to be able to write and see my progress over each week for workouts and what not and this planner is perfect.

Check it out here: PopFlexPlanner

Start planning now for 2023! What do you want to accomplish? It helps to write down your goals and also develop a plan for how you plan to accomplish them. If you need help, get the book Atomic Habits by James Clear. He will help you develop a plan to incorporate some better habits so you can become the person you would like to be. Also, read my blog here for inspiration on building better routines!

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