“I exercise because somehow completely exhausting myself is the most relaxing part of my day.” I never exercised before being diagnosed with chronic pain and learning how to manage it naturally. Before I went to the Pain Clinic I was drinking, smoking cigarettes, eating awful, and truly thought that any form of exercise would just increase my pain. Clearly: drinking, smoking, eating poorly was hurting me a lot more than exercise ever would have but I was ignorant to that concept back then. Now, I know better. This morning when I ran my two year old I felt so peaceful. Spring air, Biggie blasting in my ears (Yes Biggie can be relaxing) and just feeling my body move to a rhythm that makes me so calm. At our last mile a past a few elderly men who were having a cigarette. I could not believe that the smell actually affected me. It was so gross and I used to be a smoker! My mom smoked my whole childhood, I smoked in my teens and twenties especially when drinking because for many they go hand in hand. It is so bizarre what can change over time! It truly is never too late to change your life.
Most people with chronic pain have a very real fear of exercising as I used to. I get it. When you awake in pain (and yes I still wake up in pain) you are deathly afraid of doing anything to intensify that pain and exercise is scary for people who do not even have chronic pain. You do not need to run four miles like I did this morning or practice kickboxing or do intense yoga. Go for a walk, do light yoga, just move your body a little. Get that blood moving. If nothing else your brain will be happy. Remember fear is: false evidence appearing real. Don’t be afraid. I had brain surgery and came close to death, I was in the ICU for a long time, I have had chronic pain since. I have had many surgeries to try and cure my chronic pain. I have self medicated, I have drank my ass off, I have come close to wanting to end my life. If I can get my body and brain going anyone can. I am here to support you. Our brains tend to lie to us a lot but our intuition is almost always right!