I was 4 months post-partum. Things were still harder than I wanted them to be!
Happy New Year, Dear Danglers!!!! Welcome back! OK – hands up if you completely abandoned your training and ate too much Deliciousness over the holidays! ME TOO. Seriously? My winter coat is tight. Oh dear. Time to get back in the game! So how do you jump back in safely and fabulously after being away for a few weeks? A few months? A Year? Grab some cawfee and we’ll tawk. And pass me a butter cookie….
Why You Were Away Matters
So, why were you away? Vacation? Pregnancy & birth? Injury? Slacking? The reason for your absence matters a lot, and can give you a more realistic timeline for returning to your previous level of awesomeness. For example, if you just had a baby, you are realistically looking at 8 weeks between birth and the time you can get back in the air (not counting the months when that SPECTACULAR baby bump made that trapeze too crowded to do anything but pose on). Injured? You can only go as quickly as your injury will allow. Even a two week vacation can mess with your game when you’re in the early days of romancing an apparatus.
I know, I hear you – you want to be back to your rock star self TODAY RIGHT NOW THIS VERY MINUTE PLEASE. I get it – it’s no fun to feel like you worked your fanny off just to see that hard work go out the window with some eggnog, a two week Real Housewives marathon, and an entire cheesecake (or, you know, four…). So, as I heave myself back into the air, I invite you to do the same, and keep this on your radar.
5 Ways to Get Back in the Game Faster
1 – Don’t hurt yourself by going balls to the wall day one! Take your temperature (not literally, unless you really want to), see where you are, and never gage success by the first day back. Push yourself too hard in your frustration, and you could wind up with an injury that will prolong your hiatus! This especially applies to returning to aerial work after having a baby. Hello? You just made a person and catapulted them into the world! Cut yourself some slack!
2 – Trust the training & be where you are (I spent a half an hour trying to insert a little gong sound here. I failed, so GONGGGGGGGG!). Not to get all Zen on you, but you are where you are where you are, and no amount of beating yourself up is going to change that. Take it from me – you’ll be back in the game WAY sooner than you think! Breathe and train.
3 – Avoid mental games. Right about this time, your Inner Meanie is going to rear it’s ugly head, and try to convince you that it’s-all-pointless-the-hard-work-is-all-gone-you-suck-and-you’ll-never-have-that-hip-key-again. This is not true. You had it once, you will have it again. Shut up, Meanie.
4 – Do your best work. Cut yourself some slack? Yes. Let yourself off the hook and make excuses? NO. Work as hard and as diligently as you safely can – you’ll feel good knowing that even if you’re not back to where you were, you did your absolute best and that matters more. It really does. Remember: this is temporary!
5 – Visualize & remember. By session 3, you’ll likely have a good idea of where you actually are and what needs your attention. Review your notes on these moves and see if you’re slipped back into poor technique which may be holding you back. Try to remember in your mind and body what that move felt like, and see if you can come any closer to recapturing that sensation.
At the end of the day, it really does boil down to two things: 1) patience 2) realistic expectations. Take a deep breath, and accept where you are. Tough love: you don’t have a choice. Focus on the step just in front of you, and really celebrate every move forward – you’ll be back to your badass self in no time at all! Love and pull-ups, Laura