T Nation

Mental Difficulties of an Injury

I have been dealing with an injury for about 3 months now. Seeing chiros, physios, and start PT in about a week. I have lost a great deal of size, strength, and mostly - motivation.

I am having trouble coming up with a “plan” and sticking to it. Obviously, like 99% of T-Nation, training is my love and passion, something I cannot do without. Due to the injury, I can’t do most things without pain, or furthering my problem.

Hopefully the physical therapist can help me create a plan to stick with. But I’ve got 5 long, boring days until then (not to mention I’ve struggled for the past few months).

I can do push-ups, BW squats, and ab work. I can do things like somersaults and bear crawling, as well as all the mobility I want (and need). I just can’t find the motivation to do it. I woke up this morning with the intent to work on some specific areas with mobility, and do some BW circuits and some ab work. I’ve been up for about an hour and I have ZERO motivation.

So my question is, how are people tackling the mental aspect of a physical injury? I probably come off as a baby or a lazy person, but hear me out - being unmotivated/depressed is harder to deal with than one may think.

[quote]howie424 wrote:
I have been dealing with an injury for about 3 months now. Seeing chiros, physios, and start PT in about a week. I have lost a great deal of size, strength, and mostly - motivation.

I am having trouble coming up with a “plan” and sticking to it. Obviously, like 99% of T-Nation, training is my love and passion, something I cannot do without. Due to the injury, I can’t do most things without pain, or furthering my problem.

Hopefully the physical therapist can help me create a plan to stick with. But I’ve got 5 long, boring days until then (not to mention I’ve struggled for the past few months).

I can do push-ups, BW squats, and ab work. I can do things like somersaults and bear crawling, as well as all the mobility I want (and need). I just can’t find the motivation to do it. I woke up this morning with the intent to work on some specific areas with mobility, and do some BW circuits and some ab work. I’ve been up for about an hour and I have ZERO motivation.

So my question is, how are people tackling the mental aspect of a physical injury? I probably come off as a baby or a lazy person, but hear me out - being unmotivated/depressed is harder to deal with than one may think. [/quote]

Injuries suck no doubt, we are all body conscience here so it’s depressing as hell not to be able to go ball outs in the gym and train like hell, in fact it can be instantly mentally crushing. Been there felt that, but you have to keep moving.

Whenever I have had an injury in the past I figured out quickly how to work around it. I had a broken wrist once, could not push, pull, curl etc. so I did legs like it was my job! And I found a machine, you know the one, that I could do shoulder raise on without having to grip anything - I wore it out. Legs got bigger, so did my shoulders. A few years ago I strained my pec pretty bad “Oh god I can’t bench press now!!!” The world had ended! Well I substituted my chest day for another back day and shoulders/arms day, and I was better for it. Pec healed fine, stronger than ever.

So I say whatever exercises you can do…DO THE SHIT OUT OF THEM!! You body and mind will both thank you, and once you heal you will be ready to rock and invigorated to train like you were before.

set up a program that no matter your injuries, you cannot fail. For example, when im injured, and am still recovering now actually, i dont say “lets get 225x5 today on bench”, instead i say, lets see how i can work chest, and feel good.

I do it to the best of my ability but i dont set actual concrete ‘goals’ when ur injured u cant linearly progress all the time and no day is the same. Even things like running i dont say hey lets run 10 miles today, i say hey i should run today, so i run, see how it feels, and do it to the best of my ability that day.

Train smart, dont set yourself up for failure, learn to love ‘free training’ Its hard to follow a ‘program’ when you cant do half the lifts in them. Instead learn your body, learn how to tailor training to it based on feel not just o its day 3 lets do legs. Injuries can make you smarter, stronger and a better lifter for yourself if you can do it. It will also make you mentally stronger to overcome an injury and to lift without failing. Hope some of this helps.

Remember this is a marathon, not a sprint. You have years and years to lift. Go read dave tates iron evolution, i think phase 7 that discusses this.

also at a certain point it comes down to mental will. When you could only bench 1 plate when u started lifting was it motivating? Did you think o well certainly i can get to 300? Probably not, right now ur at the bottom of the barrel, its going to take some kind of will power to initiate success man, no one can do that for you.

Much thanks to both of you. Very helpful information, and you guys have helped open my eyes to what is right in front of me. Both of you make some great points. Injuries can instantly crush your dreams/motivation, but you gotta find the mental strength to find a way to not give up on those goals.

Hip Scar, you are spot on about finding the exercises I can do, and as you put it, DO THE SHIT OUT OF THEM. I can’t see the downside in doing a few hundred push-ups a day. Quite frankly, I could probably use more push-ups anyways.

Bignate, I like how you said that right now I am at the bottom of the barrel. You are right, I am. And I’m not okay with that. I am greatly limited in what I can do, but I’ve gotta do what I can.

I also came across a great mobilitywod video discussing how to set up mobility programming, and that picking 3 goals is generally the best for people (I believe CT has mentioned this in the past as well). I just went back and read some of Dave Tate’s stuff too.

Thanks again guys for taking the time to help!

I’ve been injured for 2 years now (wrist injury, surgery), meaning except for the last 4 months I’ve done ZERO upper body work. I’ve lost all my size and strength a long time ago. It sucks, mentally more then anything it’s very hard to look at yourself and see how far you’ve regressed. There have been days I’ve felt like shit, been depressed. Even though that original issue is almost gone now (still some lingering problems), another health problem came up, this time my hip. So now no lifting for awhile again.

I guess im saying this to give you some perspective. 3 months feels like a long time, it sucks. But whenever you’re able to return you’ll get most of your losses back very quickly. Within 3 months of upper body lifting again (after not lifting for 1.5 years) I was DB benching what I was pre-injury. So yes you’ve lost some, but it’s amazing how easily it comes back.

And as others have said, do what you are able. I did lower body lifting 3x a week for a long time until my hip issue came up. That kept me sane more then anything.

Good luck man. 2 years ago im sad to say I would’ve said you were overdramatic and just work through it, but after going through this it really is hard to keep your spirits up sometimes.

Oh and since your able to do push-ups, do a ton of them. If I wasn’t able to lift weights but could do those I would be going ape shit with them.

I’m in a similar boat myself these days. I just had knee surgery 2 weeks ago (partial meniscus removal) so lower body is out. Injury 2 weeks before that, so no cardio or lower body for a month. A week before surgery I partially detached my medial tendon in my right arm. So I can do back stuff if seated, partial presses, flys, curls and only lat/front raises/funny press and iron cross for shoulders. No full press of any kind. It is getting really demoralizing and I’ve been eating everything in sight as I feel like shit. And the eating makes me feel and look like shit.
Any Jedi mind tricks to help?

[quote]fisch wrote:
I’ve been injured for 2 years now (wrist injury, surgery), meaning except for the last 4 months I’ve done ZERO upper body work. I’ve lost all my size and strength a long time ago. It sucks, mentally more then anything it’s very hard to look at yourself and see how far you’ve regressed. There have been days I’ve felt like shit, been depressed. Even though that original issue is almost gone now (still some lingering problems), another health problem came up, this time my hip. So now no lifting for awhile again.

I guess im saying this to give you some perspective. 3 months feels like a long time, it sucks. But whenever you’re able to return you’ll get most of your losses back very quickly. Within 3 months of upper body lifting again (after not lifting for 1.5 years) I was DB benching what I was pre-injury. So yes you’ve lost some, but it’s amazing how easily it comes back.

And as others have said, do what you are able. I did lower body lifting 3x a week for a long time until my hip issue came up. That kept me sane more then anything.

Good luck man. 2 years ago im sad to say I would’ve said you were overdramatic and just work through it, but after going through this it really is hard to keep your spirits up sometimes.

Oh and since your able to do push-ups, do a ton of them. If I wasn’t able to lift weights but could do those I would be going ape shit with them.[/quote]

Thanks a million for your perspective, and thanks for your advice. I was a bit skeptical of making this thread but seeing that some positive people that know what this is like have posted their advice, it gives me more hope than anything.

If you want to train bad enough, then you find whatever you can do and learn to love it.

[quote]strangemeadow wrote:
I’m in a similar boat myself these days. I just had knee surgery 2 weeks ago (partial meniscus removal) so lower body is out. Injury 2 weeks before that, so no cardio or lower body for a month. A week before surgery I partially detached my medial tendon in my right arm. So I can do back stuff if seated, partial presses, flys, curls and only lat/front raises/funny press and iron cross for shoulders. No full press of any kind. It is getting really demoralizing and I’ve been eating everything in sight as I feel like shit. And the eating makes me feel and look like shit.
Any Jedi mind tricks to help?[/quote]

I would read the others posts, as they have helped me look to the brighter side of things. The advice has been consistent, and it has helped me see what is so obvious, just hard to admit while being in a depressed/unmotivated state.

I’ve managed to create an eating plan based on pretty low calories, but I am going to try and get in some foods that I normally don’t get in, and just focus on properly nourishing myself. I don’t have the NEED to eat big right now, and it would be very hard to do if I had to. Feeling depressed generally leaves me without an appetite, but I know that I need to eat SOMETHING, so I am going to start small with a large variety, to ensure that I am at least eating, and eating healthy.

I am going to shoot for about 200g of protein per day, 200g of carbs, 2 veg sources, 2 fruit sources, and 3 solid fat sources.

For training I picked 2 areas of mobility that I need to work on: anterior hip, and the anterior/posterior shoulder, as well as some t-spine work.

For the anterior hip I will test/retest with single-leg hip thrusts, and perform strength work with single-leg hip thrusts and Bulgarian split squats.

For the ant/post shoulder/t-spine I will test/retest with the front rack position. Strength work will be push-ups and pull-ups.

After that I will get in my ab work in the form of hollow body, reverse crunches (a la Eric Cressey), hanging leg raises, and l-sits.

I will try doing some of the work mentioned in Dan John’s Armor Building article. Somersaults, cartwheels, bearcrawl, etc, as well as a few other explosive/agility type movements - wideouts, jump rope, vert jump, updowns. I will do what I can so long as it doesn’t bother my back. I’m a little worried about the rolling around on my shoulder, but I think if I go slow and focus on being coordinated and controlled, I won’t have many problems.


As you can see, I’ve managed to find quite a variety of exercises to work on - in fact some of these exercises are ones that I SHOULD be doing, but never had the time for. Now I do! It will also be a great opportunity to get some more veggies and fruits and COLOR into my diet.

Coming up with a plan is the easy part, now pushing the mental blocks and getting it all done. Easier said than done, but with a solid plan, I think that it gives you something to look forward to, and an organized yet flexible approach to grow on.

Let me know if you want more help, I am very willing to help as these others have helped me. Like I said, the mental obstacles are the toughest to climb in my opinion. Sometimes you gotta lower your shoulder, or have a friend/friends to lean on.

Left shoulder surgery, scheduling a left hip surgery in a month, and my left knee has been hurting for 10 years (probably due to the hip issues I have). Haven’t been in a gym for 3 weeks. Needless to say, injuries are a mind fuck, I bench 1/3 of what I used to and will probably never squat again. It’s all about finding ways to work around the injury.

[quote]howie424 wrote:

[quote]strangemeadow wrote:
I’m in a similar boat myself these days. I just had knee surgery 2 weeks ago (partial meniscus removal) so lower body is out. Injury 2 weeks before that, so no cardio or lower body for a month. A week before surgery I partially detached my medial tendon in my right arm. So I can do back stuff if seated, partial presses, flys, curls and only lat/front raises/funny press and iron cross for shoulders. No full press of any kind. It is getting really demoralizing and I’ve been eating everything in sight as I feel like shit. And the eating makes me feel and look like shit.
Any Jedi mind tricks to help?[/quote]

I would read the others posts, as they have helped me look to the brighter side of things. The advice has been consistent, and it has helped me see what is so obvious, just hard to admit while being in a depressed/unmotivated state.

I’ve managed to create an eating plan based on pretty low calories, but I am going to try and get in some foods that I normally don’t get in, and just focus on properly nourishing myself. I don’t have the NEED to eat big right now, and it would be very hard to do if I had to. Feeling depressed generally leaves me without an appetite, but I know that I need to eat SOMETHING, so I am going to start small with a large variety, to ensure that I am at least eating, and eating healthy.

I am going to shoot for about 200g of protein per day, 200g of carbs, 2 veg sources, 2 fruit sources, and 3 solid fat sources.

For training I picked 2 areas of mobility that I need to work on: anterior hip, and the anterior/posterior shoulder, as well as some t-spine work.

For the anterior hip I will test/retest with single-leg hip thrusts, and perform strength work with single-leg hip thrusts and Bulgarian split squats.

For the ant/post shoulder/t-spine I will test/retest with the front rack position. Strength work will be push-ups and pull-ups.

After that I will get in my ab work in the form of hollow body, reverse crunches (a la Eric Cressey), hanging leg raises, and l-sits.

I will try doing some of the work mentioned in Dan John’s Armor Building article. Somersaults, cartwheels, bearcrawl, etc, as well as a few other explosive/agility type movements - wideouts, jump rope, vert jump, updowns. I will do what I can so long as it doesn’t bother my back. I’m a little worried about the rolling around on my shoulder, but I think if I go slow and focus on being coordinated and controlled, I won’t have many problems.


As you can see, I’ve managed to find quite a variety of exercises to work on - in fact some of these exercises are ones that I SHOULD be doing, but never had the time for. Now I do! It will also be a great opportunity to get some more veggies and fruits and COLOR into my diet.

Coming up with a plan is the easy part, now pushing the mental blocks and getting it all done. Easier said than done, but with a solid plan, I think that it gives you something to look forward to, and an organized yet flexible approach to grow on.

Let me know if you want more help, I am very willing to help as these others have helped me. Like I said, the mental obstacles are the toughest to climb in my opinion. Sometimes you gotta lower your shoulder, or have a friend/friends to lean on.
[/quote]
Argh. You are right. I’ve basically been feeling sorry for myself and eating everything in sight and feeling worse. My knee rehab is coming along really well and I should be able to run in 2 or 3 weeks and start light squatting and deadlifting. I actually cranked out a few sets on the flat bench today, 4x5 with 225 and it didn’t hurt, so that made me feel good. I just have to remember how good I feel when I lose motivation.
Thanks. I needed that.
Anonymous support from the internet, who woulda thought… :wink:

[quote]howie424 wrote:
I have been dealing with an injury for about 3 months now. Seeing chiros, physios, and start PT in about a week. I have lost a great deal of size, strength, and mostly - motivation.

I am having trouble coming up with a “plan” and sticking to it. Obviously, like 99% of T-Nation, training is my love and passion, something I cannot do without. Due to the injury, I can’t do most things without pain, or furthering my problem.

Hopefully the physical therapist can help me create a plan to stick with. But I’ve got 5 long, boring days until then (not to mention I’ve struggled for the past few months).

I can do push-ups, BW squats, and ab work. I can do things like somersaults and bear crawling, as well as all the mobility I want (and need). I just can’t find the motivation to do it. I woke up this morning with the intent to work on some specific areas with mobility, and do some BW circuits and some ab work. I’ve been up for about an hour and I have ZERO motivation.

So my question is, how are people tackling the mental aspect of a physical injury? I probably come off as a baby or a lazy person, but hear me out - being unmotivated/depressed is harder to deal with than one may think. [/quote]

What is the injury again, exactly? I might be able to give you a little advice. See, I used to be almost fully handicapped for several years before getting a new hip (as part of an experimental program – ended up having a feature done in me in the NY Times as one of the all-time great recovery stories). I know lots about starting from scratch (actually couldn’t walk) and no motivation. My most recent training program (ended in April) saw me gain at the rate of roughly 1lb./10 - 12 days. Of this, about 20% has been fat. Think about that. This is simply excellent progress for anyone. I am 51, btw… So I have put on nearly 20 lbs. 16 of which is muscle. Losing that last 4 lbs was not hard either.

Motivation: You don’t want to deal with this. Ever. So don’t. Make a schedule and stick with it. “Doing it is what gets it done”. If you have to amp yourself up to train you will miss workouts, lose momentum and gradually grind to a halt. The mindset is this: If it is 4 o’clock ( or whatever works) you are in the gym. Period. Even if you don’t feel like it at all, go there and change into your workout togs, then make the decision (the one time I did this and bailed on working out it was because I was coming down with a killer case of the flu.) Otherwise, sitting in a gym all ready to go and saying “no” sure feels like a cop-out.

Exercises: Tell me what your limits are. I’ve tried damn near everything and have very good ways of training around pretty nasty physical problems. (Aside from being For instance, you can BW squat? Awesome. Have you considered working up to pistols? (Just an example, don’t just go out and do it). Need to figure out what you lack because of the injury, address imbalances it is causing, if any, and balance out your training. Being injured is a great time to work form and activation — take the long view. Technique will get you the most bang for your buck. So if, say, you have a back injury, doing light deadlifts and really burning in the correct form will mean that once you are recovered, you can really make progress. Hitting the supplemental and complimentary exercises to the big lifts can help you make simply awesome progress when you get a clean bill of health too.

Success: “Nothing succeeds like success”, as they say. You should engineer your training so that you have attainable goals and can see progress. Going to the gym and suffering through another lame workout because you are hurt will kill off any enthusiasm you may have and might make it so you give up training entirely. I’m serious. Aristotle was oh so right when he stated that we are what what we do repeatedly, so excellence is a habit. Part of my success has been my ability to chart training so I can always feel like I did something worthwhile. Oh and part of this is being realistic about what you can really do. Never be afraid of your workout. (This is the one major reason people try then stop doing Crossfit.) Aim for solid workmanship. Not sure what this means? Start asking folks here on T-Nation.

Intensity: I am an intensity junkie. I can tell you how to train very hard. Very hard indeed (yes, I’ve run training for a group of 20-somethings and had them tossing their cookies trying to keep up. No joke.) Sometimes, this is even necessary. ;D My point is that I do it in bouts because I enjoy it and like the feeling, but it is only one training protocol. It may be applied to everything, but with the caveat that you can get overuse issues and give yourself a whole host of other injuries too. Have to be smart about intensity.

– jj

[quote]jj-dude wrote:

[quote]howie424 wrote:
I have been dealing with an injury for about 3 months now. Seeing chiros, physios, and start PT in about a week. I have lost a great deal of size, strength, and mostly - motivation.

I am having trouble coming up with a “plan” and sticking to it. Obviously, like 99% of T-Nation, training is my love and passion, something I cannot do without. Due to the injury, I can’t do most things without pain, or furthering my problem.

Hopefully the physical therapist can help me create a plan to stick with. But I’ve got 5 long, boring days until then (not to mention I’ve struggled for the past few months).

I can do push-ups, BW squats, and ab work. I can do things like somersaults and bear crawling, as well as all the mobility I want (and need). I just can’t find the motivation to do it. I woke up this morning with the intent to work on some specific areas with mobility, and do some BW circuits and some ab work. I’ve been up for about an hour and I have ZERO motivation.

So my question is, how are people tackling the mental aspect of a physical injury? I probably come off as a baby or a lazy person, but hear me out - being unmotivated/depressed is harder to deal with than one may think. [/quote]

What is the injury again, exactly? I might be able to give you a little advice. See, I used to be almost fully handicapped for several years before getting a new hip (as part of an experimental program – ended up having a feature done in me in the NY Times as one of the all-time great recovery stories). I know lots about starting from scratch (actually couldn’t walk) and no motivation. My most recent training program (ended in April) saw me gain at the rate of roughly 1lb./10 - 12 days. Of this, about 20% has been fat. Think about that. This is simply excellent progress for anyone. I am 51, btw… So I have put on nearly 20 lbs. 16 of which is muscle. Losing that last 4 lbs was not hard either.

Motivation: You don’t want to deal with this. Ever. So don’t. Make a schedule and stick with it. “Doing it is what gets it done”. If you have to amp yourself up to train you will miss workouts, lose momentum and gradually grind to a halt. The mindset is this: If it is 4 o’clock ( or whatever works) you are in the gym. Period. Even if you don’t feel like it at all, go there and change into your workout togs, then make the decision (the one time I did this and bailed on working out it was because I was coming down with a killer case of the flu.) Otherwise, sitting in a gym all ready to go and saying “no” sure feels like a cop-out.

Exercises: Tell me what your limits are. I’ve tried damn near everything and have very good ways of training around pretty nasty physical problems. (Aside from being For instance, you can BW squat? Awesome. Have you considered working up to pistols? (Just an example, don’t just go out and do it). Need to figure out what you lack because of the injury, address imbalances it is causing, if any, and balance out your training. Being injured is a great time to work form and activation — take the long view. Technique will get you the most bang for your buck. So if, say, you have a back injury, doing light deadlifts and really burning in the correct form will mean that once you are recovered, you can really make progress. Hitting the supplemental and complimentary exercises to the big lifts can help you make simply awesome progress when you get a clean bill of health too.

Success: “Nothing succeeds like success”, as they say. You should engineer your training so that you have attainable goals and can see progress. Going to the gym and suffering through another lame workout because you are hurt will kill off any enthusiasm you may have and might make it so you give up training entirely. I’m serious. Aristotle was oh so right when he stated that we are what what we do repeatedly, so excellence is a habit. Part of my success has been my ability to chart training so I can always feel like I did something worthwhile. Oh and part of this is being realistic about what you can really do. Never be afraid of your workout. (This is the one major reason people try then stop doing Crossfit.) Aim for solid workmanship. Not sure what this means? Start asking folks here on T-Nation.

Intensity: I am an intensity junkie. I can tell you how to train very hard. Very hard indeed (yes, I’ve run training for a group of 20-somethings and had them tossing their cookies trying to keep up. No joke.) Sometimes, this is even necessary. ;D My point is that I do it in bouts because I enjoy it and like the feeling, but it is only one training protocol. It may be applied to everything, but with the caveat that you can get overuse issues and give yourself a whole host of other injuries too. Have to be smart about intensity.

– jj
[/quote]

I like your mentality and this post, especially the motivation part. It’s the way I’ve always viewed motivation, not only in lifting but in life. The hardest part is getting yourself ready to go. There have been multiple times, even when healthy, when I feel tired, sore, run down but just getting into the gym changes that. Pretty hard to justify not doing something when it’s right in front of your face. Takes more work to walk away then just do it.

[quote]jj-dude wrote:

[quote]howie424 wrote:
I have been dealing with an injury for about 3 months now. Seeing chiros, physios, and start PT in about a week. I have lost a great deal of size, strength, and mostly - motivation.

I am having trouble coming up with a “plan” and sticking to it. Obviously, like 99% of T-Nation, training is my love and passion, something I cannot do without. Due to the injury, I can’t do most things without pain, or furthering my problem.

Hopefully the physical therapist can help me create a plan to stick with. But I’ve got 5 long, boring days until then (not to mention I’ve struggled for the past few months).

I can do push-ups, BW squats, and ab work. I can do things like somersaults and bear crawling, as well as all the mobility I want (and need). I just can’t find the motivation to do it. I woke up this morning with the intent to work on some specific areas with mobility, and do some BW circuits and some ab work. I’ve been up for about an hour and I have ZERO motivation.

So my question is, how are people tackling the mental aspect of a physical injury? I probably come off as a baby or a lazy person, but hear me out - being unmotivated/depressed is harder to deal with than one may think. [/quote]

What is the injury again, exactly? I might be able to give you a little advice. See, I used to be almost fully handicapped for several years before getting a new hip (as part of an experimental program – ended up having a feature done in me in the NY Times as one of the all-time great recovery stories). I know lots about starting from scratch (actually couldn’t walk) and no motivation. My most recent training program (ended in April) saw me gain at the rate of roughly 1lb./10 - 12 days. Of this, about 20% has been fat. Think about that. This is simply excellent progress for anyone. I am 51, btw… So I have put on nearly 20 lbs. 16 of which is muscle. Losing that last 4 lbs was not hard either.

Motivation: You don’t want to deal with this. Ever. So don’t. Make a schedule and stick with it. “Doing it is what gets it done”. If you have to amp yourself up to train you will miss workouts, lose momentum and gradually grind to a halt. The mindset is this: If it is 4 o’clock ( or whatever works) you are in the gym. Period. Even if you don’t feel like it at all, go there and change into your workout togs, then make the decision (the one time I did this and bailed on working out it was because I was coming down with a killer case of the flu.) Otherwise, sitting in a gym all ready to go and saying “no” sure feels like a cop-out.

Exercises: Tell me what your limits are. I’ve tried damn near everything and have very good ways of training around pretty nasty physical problems. (Aside from being For instance, you can BW squat? Awesome. Have you considered working up to pistols? (Just an example, don’t just go out and do it). Need to figure out what you lack because of the injury, address imbalances it is causing, if any, and balance out your training. Being injured is a great time to work form and activation — take the long view. Technique will get you the most bang for your buck. So if, say, you have a back injury, doing light deadlifts and really burning in the correct form will mean that once you are recovered, you can really make progress. Hitting the supplemental and complimentary exercises to the big lifts can help you make simply awesome progress when you get a clean bill of health too.

Success: “Nothing succeeds like success”, as they say. You should engineer your training so that you have attainable goals and can see progress. Going to the gym and suffering through another lame workout because you are hurt will kill off any enthusiasm you may have and might make it so you give up training entirely. I’m serious. Aristotle was oh so right when he stated that we are what what we do repeatedly, so excellence is a habit. Part of my success has been my ability to chart training so I can always feel like I did something worthwhile. Oh and part of this is being realistic about what you can really do. Never be afraid of your workout. (This is the one major reason people try then stop doing Crossfit.) Aim for solid workmanship. Not sure what this means? Start asking folks here on T-Nation.

Intensity: I am an intensity junkie. I can tell you how to train very hard. Very hard indeed (yes, I’ve run training for a group of 20-somethings and had them tossing their cookies trying to keep up. No joke.) Sometimes, this is even necessary. ;D My point is that I do it in bouts because I enjoy it and like the feeling, but it is only one training protocol. It may be applied to everything, but with the caveat that you can get overuse issues and give yourself a whole host of other injuries too. Have to be smart about intensity.

– jj
[/quote]

This is a phenomenal post. You have covered absolutely everything in great detail.

I am not entirely sure what the “issue” is, but my symptoms are back spasms in the mid-left back, and a very stiff back. Possibly stiff/out of place ribs. I also have some ribs that keep popping out on the right side, as well as some upper back/lower neck pain.

I am very happy with the great posts I have seen in this thread and in the other. Some very great people out there that know how to tackle these roadblocks.