If you’re super into fitness, you’ll know that it’s not just one easy, level path. The road to achieving your fitness goals is full of bumps, hills, and potholes that will try to trip you up at every opportunity. The mental fight to keep going even when all you want to do is sit on the couch and eat chocolate is one we all know too well. But what happens when you experience a physical problem as a result of your fitness regime? Injury due to exercise is more common than you might think and can easily happen if you don’t take certain precautions. Here are three common workout injuries, plus how to treat and avoid them.
If you are a runner, especially an outdoors one, you should know that you will be prone to shin splints. Shin splints are a common runner’s affliction caused by prolonged shin impact on hard surfaces. It affects the tibia and is most common in people who have been running for less than five years. Regarding symptoms, you will feel a dull pain in your lower legs that worsens with exercise. Don’t ever try to ‘run through the pain’ as you will only make it worse and potentially injure yourself even more. If you suspect you have shin splints; it’s best to take some time off running or other high-impact activities for around two weeks, while your bones rest. Instead, choose low-impact types of exercise such as cycling or swimming to keep fit during your time off.
Broken or Damaged Teeth
Contact sports are a great way to exercise without actually feeling like you’re working out. Some people love the gym, and others despise it; so for the latter, contact and team sports are a great way to keep fit. But, any sport that involves close proximity with teammates or heavy equipment (such as hockey balls) carries a risk. One of the most common injuries people suffer from playing a rough contact sport is broken teeth. If you suffer a blow to the face and think you have damaged a tooth; it’s vital that you seek emergency dental care immediately. Unfortunately, contact sports are always going to be rough, but if you are concerned about your dental health while playing it’s best to wear a gumshield.
We often say that we have ‘pulled a muscle’ when we feel a slight strain in our legs or abs after a workout. In reality, this is a natural part of post-workout, and it isn’t a severe strain at all. Genuine pulled muscles are extremely painful and involve the tearing of muscle tissue and the attaching tendons. You will know if you have severely pulled a muscle as you will feel pain in it even when you are resting, and you may also suffer some bruising around the area. Some people even suffer pulled muscles so badly that they are unable to use that part of their body at all. If you have a pulled muscle that you feel you can treat at home, make sure it is elevated. You can also take anti-inflammatories and use ice packs on the afflicted area to lessen the swelling.
Ally Gonzales is the founder & editor-in-chief of RunningSoleGirl. Along with blogging she is also juggling attending college and majoring in Exercise and Sports Science with a Sports Management minor.