Get that body moving!
Prevention is better than cure so they say, and when it comes to safeguarding your health and your back it is certainly true. Due to lack of exercise, diet, lifestyles and injury, weaknesses can occur in the back, particularly the lower back.
It is so important to keep mobile and active, to strengthen and lengthen muscles in order to avoid weakness starting in the back.
Right after you sit down your muscle activity slows, and when someone does this a few hours every day, right from getting up in the morning, to sitting in the car, to sitting at a desk at home, to then going to sitting on the sofa on an evening, we sometimes don’t even consider exactly how many real hours we do sit in a day. Long periods spent sitting can eventually bring risk of poor back posture, cramps and back pain.
The word exercise simply means to keep busy or active yet it is a taboo word for many people. People are scared of the word, as they associate it with work and even pain. In understanding and learning (or relearning) then you will start to ‘learn the pain away’, by learning not to fear your pain or exercise. The brain can learn to do this by positive steps in thinking and being mobile in the correct way. In order to keep the positive thought process flowing, we will think of the word exercise as an action an activity or a skill. We will be achieving something positive. For those who have suffered back pain or are suffering right now the same structure applies: relearn your brain for a better active mind and body. Failing to exercise could be the main reason why you’re feeling pain.
Get yourself a diary or notebook, keep it to hand, so you can note down what activities you are doing and jot down the amount of time you sit in a full day. You need to feel good about your progress, and seeing it recorded will provide a visual representation of this progress as each day passes. Whatever aches and pains you are suffering, mobilizing the body and mind positively is what will get you on the road to recovery. You must unlearn negative thoughts that people can use when they don’t understand or fear the word exercise. e.g. that you are too unfit or to ill to exercise, and that only rest is the solution to back problems. You are not about to go for a ten mile hike, or drop and do 50 press-ups. That is dynamic exercising and can make back pain worse. We will instead be concentrating on strengthening skills during physical exertion.
Once you get to a point when back pain is interfering in your life, it is time to understand the need to strengthen your back muscles. Pain is there for a reason. It is a signal to make you aware that something is not functioning as well as it should or that it is damaged. It lets you know that alternative action is needed.
Pain can make it hard to think positively, but to know you are going to improve is important, so write that down at the front of your diary. Once you believe this, you have taken the first step in retraining your mind, and that is part and parcel of you and your health.
Give yourself some time at some point in the day for relaxation. You must provide yourself regularly with a chance to relax. It sounds so simple, yet sometimes we forget to do this or even feel guilty for having our own time. Remember that if you give yourself your own time each day, then you are benefiting your health and wellbeing, and therefore those around you, because if you are happy and relaxed then those around you are going to be happier and more comfortable and benefit from a more positive mind focused you. Giving yourself the time to relax is paramount in coping well with your lifestyle and daily routines.