Overcoming Obstacles: Lauren Sesselmann’s Tips to Get Through an Injury

In case you missed the exciting news, it’s Guest Bloggers’ Week! And today Lauren Sesselmann — an American-born, Canadian-international professional soccer player, actor and model who plays defense for the Canadian national women’s soccer team and the Houston Dash, stars in the two Fit As A Pro DVDs and will be appearing in her first feature film, Dark Awakenings, later this year  is sharing with us her first-person experience of overcoming obstacles.

Credit: Jesse DeYoung
Credit: Jesse DeYoung

Even when we have the best intentions to eat healthy and exercise plenty, life gets in the way. Even when I’ve been knocked down, I know I’m going to get back in the game. It’s just a matter of how and when. And by game, I mean that literally and metaphorically.

In my profession, we’re used to expecting the unexpected. It was right when I was making arrangements to go from the Kansas City Blues to my new home with the Houston Dash when I tore my ACL. I was in Cyprus with my National team, preparing for the Cyprus Cup, when it happened. I was far from my family and my doctors. The pity party was a good one. Mentally I was a mess, and I couldn’t believe this had happened to me. A good cry and a couple of cookies later, I decided it was time to accept it, get back on the wagon and plan my comeback. Although I couldn’t work on my legs for several weeks, I was able to work on the other parts of my body. It became the perfect opportunity to show my arms and abs a little more love than I would normally. After just a few short months I was even able to work out with Jenn!

Lauren-Sesselman

This injury gave me a great opportunity to change things up in my workouts. Over the past few years I’ve inserted resistance training into my program and have noticed a huge difference in my speed and overall agility as a player. Since I got injured, resistance training became even more important to help with my overall strength and to get me back on the field more efficiently.

For the past few months, I have been training with the ReXist 360 band, and it is incredible. It’s comfortable, doesn’t slide down or pinch the skin, and you can wear it in the pool as well. Using the band is helping me get my leg muscles back, and it’s improving my hip strength, which is extremely important for knee injuries. I wear them when I am squatting or jumping to help with my knee alignment. The most common thing for knee injuries is the tendency to hurt yourself again because of overcompensation. Using the bands make you more aware of your body mechanics, so I can be sure that I am training effectively. So, if you are looking for a new total body workout definitely check out ReXist 360 band!

If you’re dealing with a chronic injury, I’d suggest seeing a physical therapist or your doctor to help you map out a plan of action. If you’ve overworked one part of your body, look at the next workout as a chance to focus on another, but make sure to never strain yourself. If you feel pain in any way, stay away from that exercise. Consider ice packs, massage and stretching your new best friends. This will aid in not only injury recovery but also your overall recovery and health, as it will help reduce swelling and inflammation. Try icing your sore spot for 10 to 20 minutes, two to three times a day. And make sure to get a good warm-up in before doing your next workout.

No matter what you do as your everyday job or what obstacles you encounter in life, try to make healthy eating and fitness a part of your lifestyle. We are faced with challenges all the time … injuries, stress, busy schedules, children. The best thing to do is to believe in yourself, stay positive and map out your individual road to success. I find it helpful to set daily, weekly or monthly goals for myself, whether they be big or small. Remember you are the key to your own success and if you want it bad enough, find what motivates you and go out and push yourself. Be happy. Be healthy. And live life to the fullest!

Have you overcome any obstacles? Tell me about ’em! —Lauren

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