To rest or to push through?

If you are an athlete, or one of those humans who, for fun, engage in one or many masochistic activities that make you “feel the burn”, or “feel the pump” or “hit the wall”, you will know what I am talking about.

What do you do when you feel the burn? Do you rest or do you push through? How do you know what to do?

How do you know to actually rest the body because it is tired, and pushing through will cause injury? And how do you know that you need to push through because your body is fine – its your brain that is playing tricks on you?

At this point, most people will say, “You know your body best. Listen to your body and it will tell you”. I know because I have offered that line , hypocritically, to others. But the problem is that I do know myself and my brain, and have realized that my brain talks so loud and fast that it always cons me…..

“Oh yeah, you can do that climb. You are just dilly-dallying. You are fine physically.”  And a finger tear. On the other hand, “You are so tired. You should take a break……” and the resulting ennui.

My only solution to this dilemma has been data. Whatever my brain tells me, I try to correlate. For the “you are so tired, you should take a break”, a brief look at my Fitbit logs, my sleep logs and my activity logs will tell me how true that is.  And if I feel chronic aches that make me take ibuprofen for 3 days continuously, it’s time to rest.

I do wish there was some way to bypass my brain and better get in touch with my body, sometimes, when I need to….

What tactics do you use? What do you do?

Climbing Mt. Fuji

From Texan in Tokyo

September 15, 2016