Say you’re driving down the highway and your car starts veering to one direction and you hear a hissing sound. You know that you could possibly have a flat tire. Once you pullover to the side of the road, which would be the better long-term solution to fix the flat: change the tire with the spare you have in the back, or would you patch the hole up with whatever you could find?
This may seem like a no-brainer, and in instances with your car, it may be! However, when it comes to someone addressing issues they have themselves, more often than not, the approach is similar to patching the tire with gum or duct tape. We need to take an approach to fixing issues by addressing the root of the issue, not just putting a band-aid over it and hope that fixes it.
If you go to races, it won’t be hard to find people that have braces on their knees or ankles. The more trendy thing these days is to put kinesio-tape on. Does it help with the issue? Possibly. Does it solve the issue or remove it from your life? No. These are the things we should consider when seeking out modalities to help us do what we enjoy doing.
That’s just it: most people who sign up for a race enjoy racing or enjoy running as a part of their life. So if you enjoy something, why not take care of it? Running isn’t really a tangible thing that you can care for though, so what you can take care of is your body! Instead of seeking out those band-aids like kinesio-tape or braces that will help you get through the next workout or race, address the underlying issue! If you have to kinesio-tape your low back every time you run, odds are there is some underlying muscular imbalance that can be corrected by strength and mobility training. That is just one part of the equation, too, in this scenario, you’d probably need to change how you run.
If you’re not a runner, you’re probably thinking “this doesn’t apply to me so I can disregard all of that”. Think again! Have you ever sought out a short-term benefit in lieu of a long-term solution? We’re all guilty of it from time to time, but we all need to be aware of the problem so we can address it properly. There is a difference between being blissfully naive and being consciously negligent. Be aware of your situation and address the root of the issue.
Seek out a solution that will resolve the issue you are having, instead of going for a quick-fix gadget that may provide some relief. Take weight loss for example, there are more and more one-pill-a-day fixes that spring up each day it seems. They promise “melting fat” without diet or exercise (because those are such terrible things, right?). What they’re really selling is a band-aid. Will it help you lose weight? Maybe. Will it help you live longer, get sick less, or help you keep up with the kids or grandkids as you age? Not likely.
Don’t be in the majority of people who seek band-aids. Don’t get me wrong, band-aids are great and they have a certain role within the process of healthy living. However, the more convenient option has become more the popular and accessible choice over the years. Convenient shouldn’t be confused with effective. I hope that we’ll soon live in a world where addressing the root of our issues becomes the popular thing to do. Until then, let’s continue to lead the way in that direction.
Jack is a Tri Fitness Coach, and his credentials include NASM CPT, B.S. in Kinesiology, University of Minnesota - Twin Cities. If you’d like help setting and achieving your health and wellness goals, please contact Jack at firstname.lastname@example.org to set up an appointment.