So, I’m back from two weeks in India and have been mulling the topic of today’s blog post over in my head ever since.
Not only did I have two weeks completely off any training and my normal approach to nutrition (what, curry for breakfast isn’t how I usually do things?!), but I got ill whilst in India and was poorly for about six days in the end, meaning I couldn’t train when I got back either.
Being ill made me appreciate – for the first time in a while – how much I take simple things for granted. Like, you know, being able to hold down food and be more than a few metres from a toilet. 😉
But seriously, being ill zapped my energy and made the idea of training ridiculous. Carrying my rucksack from the rickshaw to the hotel wiped me out. I couldn’t have lifted a dumbbell if there’d been one to lift. So, as I was loafing on my sofa back here in the UK, laughing at the fact that I’d assumed I’d be back in the gym the day after I got back, I realised how easy it is to take things for granted. I’m so used to being in the routine of fuelling myself up, dashing off to the gym and lifting heavy weights, it’s not til the ability is taken away from me that I realise how much effort it actually takes. Mental effort as well as physical.
The illness stopped eventually (hooray!) and I ventured back to the gym after more than a fortnight off. The hiatus, along with the Indian diet and of course the illness, meant I’d lost a bit of strength and fitness. Once again, it brought home to me how the fitness I take for granted as “normal” is anything but. My regular leg session – even after I’d modified it – absolutely whupped me. I could really feel my body working hard and responding to it. And I could totally appreciate how newbies to the gym might feel (hats off to them!)
So, as I return to normal training, I won’t take my fitness, strength or drive for granted. I’ve seen how quickly all three can be affected and I now realise they’re not just “there”. They need to be built, nurtured and maintained.
Have you ever had illness, injury or layoff which affected a specific area of your fitness? Did it open your eyes to just how hard you’d been working beforehand?