For the last three months I have been in a boot nursing a partially torn achilles tendon. For the last two weeks I have been sick. Up until then I was actively focused on jdhayes.com and worked out. My content publishing schedule and my workouts were consistent, all though modified with only upper body strength training, swimming and some indoor cycling. I was consistent until I got sick. Once I got sick everything stopped. I was barely able to get through my daily responsibilities and completely stopped focusing on my content and working out.
I was unmotivated and depressed - Why was that and could I have done more? Would doing anything have helped speed up my recovery?
Motivation and Productivity
When you are sick your energy levels are down as your body is trying to fight off whatever is making you sick. So it is understandable that you aren’t as energized and motivated to get things done. Your productivity is non-existent. But I find myself completely shutting down. What could I have done to not completely lose my momentum?
Rather than completely shutting down I could have been easier on myself. I could have lightened up on what I was expecting of myself and been happy with less. I usually have an all or nothing view, which is completely counter-productive. Looking at what I wanted to get done and scaling that back to a few key items would have been better and much more successful.
As I discussed in my post “I’m starting a medication practice" , I have started meditating. During the last two weeks I completely dropped that as well. In hindsight I could have kept that up and I think that would have actually helped cut the stress of the sickness and helped put my illness in perspective. I am like most men in that every stuffy nose, bit of congestion, and fever is life threatening. Meditation would have helped with my mindset and perspective.
Think Longer Term
When I was laid up that would have been a great time to think a little longer term. Getting out of the negativity of knowing I needed to get things done and was not doing them, and stepping back and thinking long-term would have served me well. Using that time to look at my goals, the systems and processes I have or need, would have kept me on a positive trajectory. Resting and being inactive lends itself to thinking, planning and retrospective views. I definitely lost a great opportunity to use that time wisely.
Clear the Clutter
Getting organized and decluttering does not take a lot of thought or mental energy. Also having a more organized workspace and home space would have made me feel better and helped with my mental attitude. This is something I could have done in small bursts.
Evaluate and Think
This ties into the Think Longer Term suggestion. What could I have done differently to potentially avoided this illness? One too many apple fritters? Does this always happen after a long international flight? If I would have done some focused thinking on this I might have a preventative gameplay now. Another good question would have been What can I do Now? Focusing on doing something would have been better than How quickly can I get to bed.
Working Out and Physical Activity
How could I have still done some physical activity?
Evaluate what exactly I have. With only a sinus infection and the related congestion and drainage I had the classic Above the neck illness. The conventional thinking is that if you illness is only above the neck and you don’t have a fever then physical activity is okay, although lighter. Once you have a fever and a more widespread illness it is best to take some time off.
I should have continued with a light workout regime. I had my bike set up on the indoor trainer so I could have done some light spinning, or even some light kettlebells and suspension band training. In hindsight I bet a little activity would have sped up my recovery.
Next time I’m not feeling well, and it will happen again, I am going to walk though these suggestions. I think using these suggestions will not only help me keep up some momentum but also speed up my recovery. Having a positive outlook and some light physical activity will help.
I hope you find something here that helps. Add any more tips or thoughts below in the comments.