The wisdom of Yoda. I love the old Star Wars movies. But that’s not what I am writing about today. Only the wisdom of Yoda. Yesterday I finished my workout and took this photo:
I had just finished my workout and was sweating. My thought was to share it on Instagram with a comment about still being able to get in a good workout even though I am still recovering from a shoulder injury. But it got me thinking about “Do.” I have had a couple of more major injuries in my life that have inhibited my ability to function, or at least it could have inhibited my ability. As I talk about these two opportunities, please don’t assume I am always perfect at this, but as I work through life, and am currently working through an injury, I have learned to get up and do.
About 10 years ago I broke my tibia bone right above my ankle. This was extremely frustrating at first as I began to think of all the things I would not be able to do. One of those things was exercise. I figured I was done until I healed. I was angry because I loved running and had just PR’d on my 4-mile run. I hate to admit it, but for a couple of days I didn’t do anything. I sat with my foot up and thought. But, as I thought, I decided that this would be a great opportunity to work my upper body, and there were still some things I could do to work some of the muscles in my lower body, so they didn’t atrophy so badly, plus my other leg was going to have extra work, and I could focus there as well. Being able to get back to work lifted my spirits, and I was able to see great upper body gains by the time I got my cast off. I am so grateful for the opportunity that experience gave me to learn about myself, and to learn about doing what I can do rather than focusing on everything I couldn’t do.
Recently, with my shoulder injury, I was again caught off guard again (because that’s how injuries are) and had a small window of time right after the injury where I was discouraged again and began to think of how this injury would inhibit my ability to exercise and function normally. But, having learned from the last injury, I decided to focus on what I could do. I couldn’t hold weights even to do lower body workouts, but gratefully, I have learned over the years a number of techniques that work to keep my body in shape that don’t require weights or impact. I am grateful for the knowledge I have gained over the year in that regard, as well as the tools I have acquired to help increase resistance without weights, like loops and bands. So, I jumped in, I realized that I could do most cardio workouts, not my favorite, but still work. I also was able to increase my lower body workouts as well as my ab workouts, an area I hadn’t really focused on in a while. Once I was cleared by the physical therapist, I was also able to start into some joint mobility and tendon strengthening exercises as well. My other realization was that this injury would help me focus more on form rather than weight, something that I work on and strive to maintain, but really don’t focus on as much as I should. Opportunities that I saw only after having a problem to solve.
Every day, with every problem that we encounter we have the opportunity to choose to see the problems that arise, or to see the opportunities that problem has given us. We also have the choice as to whether to act on those opportunities or to sit and sulk. Doing requires us to see solutions. But it is only through the doing that we can get beyond the problem. So today, I encourage you to do as Yoda inspires us to, don’t try, go out and do.