1. Alan has completed the new Pain Recovery Program. To read or share it, use this updated link: https://www.tmswiki.org/forum/painrecovery/
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Day 3 Exercise

Discussion in 'Structured Educational Program' started by Rajput21, Jun 30, 2013.

  1. Rajput21

    Rajput21 Peer Supporter

    One of my great joys is weightlifting. I normally do it intensely, two to three times a week. Lately with my summer internship being so stressful, by the time I come home my back is killing me so I end up just resting on the couch until I eat and go to bed. Last Thursday I went to the gym for the first time in a month. It felt good, but I felt a little out of it, so I only completed half of a normal workout. Still it felt good and I pushed through the pain. Tomorrow I'll try to go after work and see if I can get past the pain again.
  2. Emily

    Emily Peer Supporter

    First off, nice work getting to the gym! It is so important to keep doing the activities we enjoy, even (or especially) when we are feeling pain. I noticed that you made a clear connection between your current increase in back pain throughout the day and the stress of your summer internship. Have you tried to journal at all about your experience at the internship? What part of the internship is creating stress-- a boss, a TMS personality trait that makes you want to go above and beyond at work, fear that the pain will interfere with your work? Do you have a technique to help face the pain during the day or while at the gym (ex: self soothing when you are worried about a task at work, or getting angry at the pain before starting your weightlifting routine). I look forward to hearing how exploring your stress through the structured educational program helps with the pain.
  3. Rajput21

    Rajput21 Peer Supporter

    Thanks for the support! I haven't started writing about my internship yet, I have mostly been exploring different stressors and childhood trauma so far. My TMS started when I changed cities and entered law school. Sitting is what kills me. What really bothers me is that I am doing great at my internship and handling all of the new stresses well (as far as work completion and completing challenges), but the stresses do result in back pain. The intensity of the pain is also troubling because it hasn't been this bad in awhile.

    I'm not sure what to do when the pain comes. I understand that it happens when I sit and that it's TMS, but telling myself these things doesn't seem to be helping yet. Really the only thing that helps is laying down, but I'm not sure if that's a good response because while it diminishes the pain, it is kind of avoiding it. Also I can't lay down at work, so I just push through.

    I tried in the past to do my legal work in small doses and to take breaks, but the work is very time consuming. Pacing myself and taking breaks seems impossible.
  4. gailnyc

    gailnyc Well known member

    Instead of "pushing through," you might try relaxing into it when the pain occurs. This is very hard and the opposite of our natural reaction to pain. But I believe that it's the tensing into pain--responding to tense muscles with MORE muscle tension--that fuels the pain cycle.

    Note: this will not reduce the pain right away. It will take time. So practice trying to do it whenever the pain comes up.
  5. Rajput21

    Rajput21 Peer Supporter

    What kinds of things do you recommend Gail? Take a few minutes to meditate? Look through my TMS materials? Typically I try a little self talk but inevitably I end up standing up or moving around to try to avoid the pain.
  6. gailnyc

    gailnyc Well known member

    No, I am talking about what to do in the moment when you feel the pain. Usually we are up and about in the world when pain comes, so we can't meditate or read. Just, instead of tensing when you feel pain, relax. Let go of your muscles as much as you can without collapsing. Just try reacting with relaxation instead of with tension as much as you can. Practice it for a week and see if it helps.

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