Learning to Heal.
“Your body is not a temple- it is more like a truck- ready to put through hell- take it on a ride, push hard, get it dirty, get it used, but give it the care and attention that is needed.”
There are many different definitions of “health”.
The absence of illness.
A continuous state of wellbeing.
An optimal state of management of our different systems.
In training or in life, sooner or later one needs to spread themselves thin, push hard, exert and overcome.
While there are many models in place to motivate, focus, drive and help us sat on track, each individual to find there blueprint to health, and the different tools for healing.
We have a motto of “pain without injury”. Not all injuries are traumatic and not all traumas are crippling. In fact some of us bounce back stronger (see antifragility).
Often, RootDojo’s students train 3 to 6 hours a day, 5 days a week, weeks at a time. Regardless of which programs they are signed up in, they need to manage there energies (systems) level to help them learn, perform, recover and heal. And repeat.
We can teach our bodies to heal better, and to this end we need to create the optimal conditions for healing to happen.
Before healing happens we need to ensure that the affected systems are where we need them to be- or directed towards that position; a broken bone needs to be put in the right position before we focus on healing. A broken psyche would need elements of hope and direction instilled, tension needs to be decreased, etc.
Commonly, and depending on where your default settings are at, nutrition and rest are two of them main tools to recovery and healing- there are many others, such as interaction with cold and heat, stretching and massages and different forms of therapy.
Today i would like to look internal healing functions (meaning the person healing themselves) with a focus on rest.
According to the webster dictionary, “rest” is defined as a “bodily state characterized by minimal functional and metabolic activities”.
There are also secondary definitions, which are contexually of interest; “at rest” offers “free of anxiety”.
There are many hours in a day where we can rest. Many people in their urban lifestyles consider their commuting time as the most restful time of the day, be it while driving or using transit. There are many other moments in our daytimes where we can rest- without taking a nap. These conditions require a reduction of external stimuli, whereby allowing the psyche and the emotional systems to lower levels of excitement and anxiety, which are key factors in healing already over-strained nervous systems.
Learning to rest is a skill.
The body should heal itself within 6-8 weeks of any injury, once the proper conditions have been created.
These conditions may require many months in some conditions to happen, but once in place, then healing can happen fast, especially on systems that are used to need healing.
As a function, healing too requires training.
You need to create to conditions for your systems to need to heal and recover- systems that never “break”, forget how to heal themselves, and like any biological functions- use it or loose it.
“Listen to me, your body is not a temple. temples can be destroyed and desecrated. Your body is a forest- thick canopies of maple trees and sweet scented wildflowers sprouting in the underworld. You will grow back, over and over, no matter how badly you are devastated.”(Beau Taplin)
And then, there is sleep.
Possibly by far the most important tool to recovery and healing, sleep is the ultimate defragmentation tool. And this function too needs proper conditions and settings for it to be most useful.
It is not uncommon for individuals who push hard to be “wired and suffer from poor sleeping patters, thus not creating the conditions for good metamorphic sleep to happen.
Some people sleep, but do not rest.
These conditions can happen as a result of over activated nervous system, along with abused digestive, psychological and a emotional systems.
In my personal training, I had to teach my systems how to avoid burdening themselves with the by-products of hard (and sometimes excessive) training, and to this end, I spent many months using cold water dousing, specialized breath work and some prayer to “cleanse” my systems prior to falling asleep.
In conclusion, resting, healing and recovery require some deep understanding of the self. At different times in life, depending on where we are, how are systems are functioning independently and as a whole, we will need different prescriptions to heal- and in most situations, individuals have the remedies within.
“Healing is awesome- kinda like magic- hopefully you are left in awe.”