Sunday, May 12, 2013

Pain Free 2013 Part IV :: Have a Pain Free Day

Welcome back to Pain Free 2013, in which we give you handy tools to manage your pain!  

If you’ve lived with chronic pain, or even had pain for more than a few days in a row- you know that you can get oddly comfortable with it.  There is a lot of guilt associated with comfortability in pain.  There shouldn’t be.  Being comfortable in your pain doesn’t mean that you don’t want to be pain free. It doesn’t mean that you’re not willing to work hard at it.  It simply means that you’ve become accustomed to it.  Change can be scary, even change for the better.

Today we’re going to give you some key-components to having a ‘you’ day that will not only help you manage your pain, but will give you a chance to reconnect with your body.

Step One: Take a long, hot bath or shower. Today is not the day for jumping through the shower because you’re in a hurry.  Move your body around. Feel what aches, feel which parts the warm water helps to sooth.  Indulge.

Step Two: When you get out of the shower/bath, your muscles should be relaxed from the warm water.  Now is a good time to do some light stretching. Stretch all of the different parts of your body.  Only stretch until you feel it, not until it causes hurts. Be aware of tightness and restricted range of motion and give those areas a little extra attention.

Step Three: Massage.  If you can swing it, go get a professional massage, if not, spend a little time working on the muscles that you noticed were tense earlier. Be gentle. No deep tissue work that will leave you sore and achy later. A medium strength Swedish massage is about as deep as you want to go.
(Note: This applies to most massages, many people feel that when it comes to massage- the deeper the better.  Never underestimate the power of a good, relaxing round of light muscle work. Often times it can coax the muscles into longer lasting pliability.)

Step Four: Eat a healthy meal.  Eat a meal today that is rich in vegetables, light in wheat and sugars and has a decent source of protein.  This will give your body extra fuel and encourage it to feel good.

Step Five: Drink LOTS of water.  The rule of thumb is that you should be drinking half of your body weight in ounces every day.  Most of us don’t. Today try to meet that goal and overcome it by at least eight ounces.

Step Six: Go for a walk.  No high impact exercise today! Go for a leisurely walk or hike. Notice how your body moves as you walk. The shifts in your hips and spine. Notice if a certain gait decreases your pain or increases it.  Notice your posture when you walk. Are you standing straight? Where are your arms?  Do you favor one leg more than the other? The key here is being aware of your body and letting it find a natural flow.

Step Seven: RELAX! Once you completed steps one through six, relax for the rest of the day. Pay attention to what your body feels like doing- it will tell you if you listen.  

Step Eight: Get lots of sleep.  Today is a good day to head to bed early and let your body enjoy the day it’s had.   

Now, see how you feel tomorrow. Are there places that are sore? Are there places that feel better?   Days like this every now and then allow you to connect with your body and find solutions to overcome pain.

*Sore No More! is not a licensed physician. All information on this blog is researched by our staff and is subject to inaccuracies. No information found here should be used in the place of advice from your doctor. * Sore No More 150 East Center Street Moab, Utah 84532 Tel: (435) 259-5931 Toll Free: (800) 842-6622