Staying In Shape When You Are Injured


Three weeks ago today I was in a mountain bike time trial race and I crashed my bike.

About 50 feet from the finish line I tangled with another rider, went over my handlebars, and my face/head absorbed the entire fall.

Lights out for Jon.

This is the part of the story I am going to tell based on what I have been told by the people around me since I have no recollection of the events.

I remember flashes of images, but that’s it.

So I land. Somehow all my teeth stayed in and my nose didn’t break.


But, it turns out my brain got the short end of the stick. More on that later.

I was unconscious for between five and ten minutes.

Fortunately, there were a number of people there to help me.

An E.R. doc, a couple nurses, two firefighters, my brother Evan, father-in-law Ed, and teammate Nick.

Apparently I was adamant about standing up and finishing the race.

My brain was obviously firing on all cylinders.

I was later told by one of the emergency people that they thought about getting the helicopter, but there was no where for it to land.

Let me tell you what, if I ever get to ride in a helicopter I better be conscious.

So we get in the ambulance and head to the hospital where I got my first CT scan.

My brother, who also was in the race, was riding in the ambulance with me and said I kept asking him if he raced.

I couldn’t remember him standing with me at the starting line an hour earlier.

After the first CT scan we got the first bit of not so great news.

There was two or three spots of bleeding on my brain.

If compressive forces become too great, this can cause death.

The staff did a few more scans over the next few days until it showed that the bleeding had stopped.

I was able to go home on day four.

A couple weeks after the accident I spoke with an emergency worker who was on scene who told me he thought I could pass away from what he saw.

Pretty sobering.

When I left the hospital I was not allowed to drive or lift anything over ten pounds.


Just under three weeks later I got fully cleared to drive, ride, and lift.

I was back on my bike within five hours.

I could not be more grateful for what everyone did for me from the time of the accident through my recovery. You all know who you are.

Okay folks, this is an example of a scenario when you are NOT to worry about working out while you are injured.

In fact, you also shouldn’t feel bad if your diet is off either.

I had a couple different hospital visitors bring me a Slurpee because it sounded incredible.

Do you think I gave a crap about how lean my abs were when I was happy to just be alive?

Hospitals should have Slurpee machines.

Now, let’s skip to a more realistic scenario.

Perhaps your knee hurts.

Or maybe you have shoulder pain.

Could be that your back is giving you a hard time.

What I don’t like seeing someone do is throw in the towel because they assume an isolated pain or injury means they should stop doing everything.

First things first, if your activity is going to be limited get your nutrition in check.

The more inactive you are the more of an issue this becomes.

You likely need to drop your calories a bit so you aren’t in a surplus over what you burn in a day and make sure to get in adequate protein to avoid loss of lean tissue.

Trust me, I totally understand that locking in the nutrition end sucks, but it makes coming off an injury much easier.

Second, train around the problem.

Most people who are injured resort to pulling the plug on everything.

Don’t do that.

If your shoulder or elbow hurts, focus on lower body and limited upper body.

If your knee or foot hurts, focus on upper body and limited lower body.

There are always workarounds.

Does it suck to be limited in the gym?

Sure it does, but it’s far better than doing nothing.

Remember, doing anything positive for your body is always better than doing nothing.

So, there you have it.

Do not search for an immediate excuse when you are hurt. Make it work.


You have worked far too hard to stop cold turkey and lose all your gains you made in the last few months.

Are you injured currently and want some tips on what you can do to workaround it?

Shoot me an email RIGHT NOW at


Check out my website to learn more at www.JonWalters.CO

IG: JonWalters15

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