How changing my bedding helped me at the gym

You don’t often think about the things you have forever believed to be right for you.

My shoulders have troubled me for years — OK, they weren’t exactly helped by a couple of acci­dents that caused rotat­or cuff dam­age, but the prob­lem has gone one much longer than that. And in Octo­ber it got to the point that it was hold­ing everything up at the gym; and for three months I got very frus­trated with that, as any­one who fol­lows me on twit­ter will attest.

A couple of weeks ago I decided that, in order to let them calm down, I needed to sleep flat on my back at night. Now, I don’t like doing that. I snore. But the snoring’s mit­ig­ated by a spe­cial gum­shield now, and any­way, the shoulders are more import­ant. So I dug the spe­cially-shaped memory foam pil­lows out the attic, and put them on the bed.

It didn’t work. Just like last time. The time they ended up in the attic in the first place. I kept turn­ing on my side and curl­ing up — as I always have done. So much so that my pos­ture is very poor: my left shoulder is usu­ally car­ried a little for­ward, caused by always sleep­ing on my right hand side.

So I began to think about why I do that. I had nev­er con­sidered it before. OK, I like curl­ing up, but that’s not enough of a reas­on, espe­cially when asleep. Then I finally real­ised why I do this.

My duvet is too light.

I’m get­ting cold.

I’m curl­ing for warmth.

After that blind­ing flash of the obvi­ous, I dug out my 15 tog duvet (for com­par­is­on, I was pre­vi­ously using a 4.5 tog one, through­out the year) and tried it out.

My good­ness, it’s heavy. But I don’t find myself auto­mat­ic­ally curl­ing up now. And lying flat at night is hav­ing a slow but sig­ni­fic­ant effect on the shoulders — they’re nowhere near per­fect yet, but I’m able to work out prop­erly, without pain. I’m not at full strength, but that will come back in time. Too light­weight a duvet. Who would have spot­ted that one?