Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Sit, Stand, Walk, Talk

Oh man, it's not even 10am today and already it's disgustingly hot and humid and it's supposed to get even worse. A high of 30 celcius (90F)? Toronto really has only 2 seasons: winter and summer. And they both suck!

Okay, enough bitching about the weather here.

The weather in San Francisco was my ideal: 15 celcius, breezy and sunny. This made our long days of walking very enjoyable as did the fact that I experienced very little pain in my butt/leg the whole time.

I was surprised given how much walking we did and that so much of it was hills. This gives me hope that one day I might be able to go back to my treadmill workouts.

By the time we came home, in fact, I was feeling better than I had felt in many, many, MANY months, confirming what my physiotherapist and I have suspected: sitting is the real culprit for me.

If you think about it, sitting in a chair is really a human convention. Our bodies were designed to stand, walk, lie down and sit on the floor, but we invented the concept of sitting in a chair and recent research has shown that it is not only damaging to our musculoskeletal system, but also our tickers. Apparently, sitting at a desk for 6 or more hours a day, dramatically increases your risk of heart disease, EVEN IF YOU WORKOUT REGULARLY.

June 12th and 13th I have my MRIs scheduled, however, I don't really know what they will show or if what they do show will change much. My therapist and I finally seem to be on the right track in terms of what I need to do for rehab and what I need to avoid. Almost everyone I have talked to has said back surgery to fix chronic pain problems is generally ineffective and I really do not want to take that route anyways.

It's good that I have chosen a profession that doesn't involve sitting at a desk all day, however, traditional counselling still involves sitting. This has prompted me to consider the idea of combining psychotherapy with my training as a fitness instructor and personal trainer. While that may sound nutty, it's not really such a radical idea. Peers of mine at school already working in the counselling field often mentioned situations where clients were uncomfortable with the traditional arrangement of sitting in chairs and looking at one another so they would end up going for a walk with them to make the idea of discussing sensitive material less threatening.

I suggested the idea of training/counselling people simultaneously to my physiotherapist a few months ago kind of as a joke, but he loved the concept. In fact, he called me at home a few weeks later and asked if I was interested in doing just that with a client of his who needed both emotional support and personal training. Unfortunately, I am not ready for that. I need more time to think about this and research the logistics in terms of liability insurance, proper facilities, etc.

In the meanwhile, I continue to perch on a yoga block whenever I have to sit down, but this is embarrassing. Hopefully one day I will be able to sit down, when necessary, without experiencing any pain in my butt. Nevertheless, I think I will continue to explore this idea of "active counselling" because I really think this is something that could take off...

P.S. For those of you who have been leaving me comments. Thank you. Unfortunately Blogger is not letting me respond. I'm trying to get to the bottom of this and will respond whenever I do so.

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