Everything is Connected
The wellness cycle I created shows the integrated connection of our health. Each segment affords a positive influence on the next, thus affecting the whole. When it comes to pain, it is vital to know how many factors play a role in creating change.
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Here's a more in-depth explanation of the Remedy PT Wellness Cycle.
We are made to move!
Movement affords you the quality of life that has been missed due to pain. Moving in ways you enjoy helps you see your potential and possibility for change.
Knowing you can move without damage opens up possibilities for goals.
What keeps you from moving well? Besides illness or injury, the main factors that reduce your capacity to move are fatigue, stress, pain, and fear. It’s empowering to learn that your emotional and mental health have a deciding factor in how you move. Everything is connected.
- Do what brings you joy. Movement is essential to everyone, yet the way people move can be so diverse. Finding some form of movement that you enjoy can help both your physical and emotional well being.
- Prioritize it. Move with the knowledge that you are nourishing your whole self. Making it a priority is how you meet your goals.
- Don’t fear movement. Let it become your remedy. It can be the gateway to trusting your body again. When you are able to be more confident in movement your nervous system isn’t as sensitive, which sets the stage for pain relief far better than any physical modality ever will.
Keep reading, Persistent pain and returning to what you love.
Daily movement and exercise help guide positive nutrition choices. Eating well to nourish your body and brain makes a powerful impact on your health. When you are trying to heal from pain and/or injury, eating a healthy anti-inflammatory diet should be a priority but can often be overwhelming.
- Simple Swap. Instead of overhauling it all or going cold turkey, pick one vice item you can replace with a healthy item. The next right step in this direction will cause a ripple effect of positive change. Enjoy this delicious salad recipe .
- Change your perspective on food. You can choose to see healthy eating as terribly restricting or you can choose to say, “I get to nourish this one body I have.” It’s the difference between mindset of nourishment or consumption.
- Eat Enough. Food gives your body available energy. Depriving your body of the very thing it needs will reduce its ability to heal. Read here on the importance of food as fuel in female athletes.
Pain has a way of making us want to escape it. However, there is a good amount of science on mindfully learning notice the pain, notice your environment, notice your mindset, and learn to be present with curiosity and openness.
A helpful mindset:
- Explore movement. Gradually exposing yourself to movement that was once restricted or feared is a powerful confidence booster. At Remedy PT, we help movement feel safe again.
- Become self aware. How do you talk to yourself? What mindset informs your choices? Is it fear, shame, anger? Or is it love, growth, and freedom?
- Notice your body. Take a moment to close your eyes and notice your body. Where do you hold on to tension? How do you respond to this pain or tension? Noticing is the first act of connecting.
Breathing helps the body excel in performance and in recovery.
Slow resonant breathing has been shown to reduce stress and anxiety. Resonant breathing is one way to synchronize your breath in a slow pattern for a certain amount of time. My video teaches 2 ways to practice breathing for 6 breaths per minute.
or follow the prompt below:
Practice slow breathing
- Time your inhales and exhales for 1 min.
- Notice your regular pattern so you know how to change it.
- Then practice slowing your breath rate.
- Take your time and don’t force it.
- See if you can slow it enough to Inhale 5 seconds and exhale 5 seconds.
- Repeat this cycle for one minute.
Optimally this would be inhaling and exhaling through the nose.
Attempt this in a comfortable relaxed position. One tip is to practice this slowing the breath rate before bed to help you wind down for sleep.
Stress is a necessary component of life. The ultimate goal is stress resilience vs no stress at all.
Pain is a stressful experience. Read more on the stress – pain connection here.
Calm your nervous system:
Here are a list of activities to stimulate the parasympathetic nervous system:
- Sun Exposure – Get outside
Quality sleep restores our body and brain. It helps us heal, move, eat, think, and reduce stress. If you are dealing with persistent pain, it is empowering to know you can change your pain response through optimizing your sleep.
For a full run down on sleep health, read my article.
- Practice expressive writing before bed. It is a journal of sorts to get your thoughts out of your mind and onto paper. These can be both negative and positive thoughts. Write it all out, then tear up the paper. This helps to calm the nervous system and decrease the mental fixation on your negative thoughts.
- Avoid screen time ideally two hours before bedtime to allow melatonin to rise and cortisol to lower naturally.
- Environment matters. Sleep in a cool, dark, uncluttered room.
- Get sunlight within the first hour of waking.
- Bedtime and wake time should be a consistent daily schedule.