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Shouldn’t You be Training?

It’s the week after Indoor Nationals. Outdoor season has officially started. And I haven’t shot my bow since Sunday.

I came home from Nationals feeling pretty good. Until I woke up Monday morning with a throat so sore swallowing made me want to cry. I chalked it up to a cold. It would be  gone in a day. It’s Thursday now. My head is still stuffy. My nose running. I am either ravenously hungry but unable to eat much because of a sore throat, or my throat doesn’t hurt but I’ve lost any semblance of hunger. It’s just a cold! But it’s a cold that’s kicking my ass. I should have gone to practice on Tuesday, but didn’t. Shooting while unable to breathe isn’t fun. I should have gone to practice today. But I’m curled up in bed, home from work early, my voice completely gone.

I can hear the voice in my head. It’s a constant low shout now. “You won’t get better if you just lay here. Shouldn’t you be training? Your scores at Nationals were nothing to write home about. Are you going to let a little cold keep you from shooting?”

Were this a tournament I’d be on the line, sniffles and all. But it’s not. Training is a marathon. A long, never ending marathon. But to perform, to focus, to train, your body has to be functioning pretty well. Mine right now is suboptimal. And so all that energy that would go into shooting is going into getting better instead. Which means rest. Hydration. Oranges. Decent food. More rest.

When you have a chronic illness, any other illness gets a little magnified. The cold will make you feel worse than it might others. But it also has the ability to trigger a flare up of the chronic condition. So my goal with all this rest is to make sure the Fibromyalgia doesn’t flare up in addition to the annoying, crappy cold. Because that’s a train wreck I’d like to avoid. I can’t not go to work, so instead I cut the extracurricular stuff. Which means shooting. Until I can shoot without the risk that it will land me in bed for a week.

Prevention is a bigger priority when you have a chronic condition. Injury prevention, sure. But also illness prevention. It’s more important to take time to recover from even the smallest illnesses so they don’t blow up into something bigger.

So to the voices in my head, no. I shouldn’t be shooting. I should be getting well so that I can shoot.

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