It is easy right now to compromise our health and to rationalize poor decisions. Many patients have told me that their sleep schedule is wacked out, their diet is shot, and their workouts are not what they were. People try to fill the holes in their routines with substitutes, some good and other not-so-good. The goal in life is to consistently choose good things over “bad”, and sometimes it is just choosing less bad than bad.
I follow a health and fitness account on Instagram. They love posting “eat this, not that” type pictures. One side of the picture will be an image of a bowl of Cap’n Crunch with a slash through it, the other side a bowl of Cheerios with a banana cut up. The account is trying to help people find satisfying substitutions to help satisfy their cravings. Occasionally though, I think they have lost their minds. Today they posted a picture of a crossed out delicious Krispy Kreme original glazed donut next to a bowl of kale. No one in the history of forever has wanted a glazed donut and been satisfied with a bowl of gag food. Here is the thing, one or two glazed donuts are not going to make you fat, give you diabetes, or give you heart disease. But consistently choosing a glazed donut over a more nutritious breakfast will eventually hurt your body.
I miss my gym dearly and the home workouts are just not the same. I know that my wife misses me going to the gym too, she keeps commenting that the muscles that used to be around my chest and arms are now flab around my equator. After about six weeks of the shut down I realized that I had been stress-eating too much and my physique was showing it. Since then I have taken the time to try to walk or jog when I can, I have tried to choose healthier foods that are less calorically dense, and I have tried to drink more water. I did not notice changes right away, but after a few months they are evident (at least to me, my wife still points out my spare tire).
In the past few months, I have seen an obvious uptick in patients complains of new pains that they have never had before. In discussing things, we learn that a change in their routine has caused new habits, like sitting on the couch more, or working on a laptop instead of at their workstation. Using a laptop for five minutes on the couch is not going to cause any problems, but hours and days in a slumped over posture will certainly create issues. Pay attention to your posture during the day, and make sure that you are being good more than you are slouched, twisted, or slumped. And give us a call if you have already caused yourself aches, pains, or stiffness. We will help you get right and make it easier to starting doing more good.
Life is pretty different right now. I know that is not an insightful comment, we are all aware of the strange times that we are experiencing. The change, or total lack of, a routine can cause health issues of all kinds. Obviously mental health is challenged when we have to deal with things outside of our control that affect us. Our Spiritual health is compromised when we cannot attend church or other gatherings that uplift us and unite us with others. And, of course, our physical health suffers when we cannot do the healthy things we are used to doing. Here are a few easy things we can do to find the balance in life that many feel they are lacking right now:
- REACH OUT
Reach out to others and find ways to help them. Being social distant from others is good to slow the spread of a virus, but it also spreads us from each other. We need each other and serving is one of the easiest ways to uplift the community. It shifts our focus from ourselves and to someone else. It can help us better appreciate the good things that we have in our lives, and it brightens the day of another.
- REACH OUT
- GET OUTSIDE
Our immune systems need the sun, wind, and fresh air. Cabin fever has been a real issue during this ordeal, and it is perfectly safe and recommended to get outside. Go for a walk, sit in the park, or jump in the lake. Your mind and body will thank you.
- GET OUTSIDE
- SEEK OUT THE GOOD
Seek out good media and ignore the bad. What is good media? Phone calls with friends and loved ones, well-made TV shows and movies, and good books and articles. The bad media? Well (not to sound like an old man) but most social media right now is a garbage dump. It serves a purpose, but it easily becomes a negative influence in our lives. I don’t know who needs to hear this, but you don’t need to get worked up over what your old roommate’s cousin’s husband thinks about masks. You just don’t. I’m not telling you to only talk to or listen to people that you agree with (that’s actually a terrible way to live life), but to stop mindlessly scrolling and working yourself up by what others post.
- SEEK OUT THE GOOD
- LISTEN TO YOUR BODY
Pay attention to what your body is telling you. You are likely carrying an immense amount of stress and emotional tension in your body. That is expected during times like this. That tension causes very real physical discomfort and pain. Chiropractic is one of the best ways to help alleviate it. There are many other reasons that your body is not feeling right, like a change in your routine causing you do to activities that you normally do not do.
Call us at 888-477 to schedule an appointment and to help yourself feel like yourself again!
Why is chiropractic considered essential? There are many reasons, but here are the three biggest:
- We can reduce the burden at the hospital. A large number of ER visits are due to musculoskeletal problems. Almost all of those cases can be evaluated and treated at England Chiropractic instead of the hospital or clinic. It is safer for the patient to be seen in our office because it limits exposure to sick people.
- Your back health is essential to your overall health. Pain can wear us down, mentally and physically. It can make us more susceptible to illness. By helping you feel and function better, chiropractic care can help your immune system.
- We care for health care workers, first responders, and other essential services. While some of us are bored at home, others are working harder than ever. We already treat many of those hard workers, and by staying open we can help do our small part to keep things moving toward recovery.
We wish you all well and will remain open as long as it is prudent and safe to do so.
Winter begins as a magic wonderland of snow. That only lasts until about December 26th, or maybe January 2nd, depending on the person. After that it turns into a bleak, dark, depressing string of days that get dark at 3pm and spring seems far away. Winter can wear you down mentally and physically. It’s hard to do anything when it looks like midnight by the time you get off work. That lack of activity has been shown to contribute to the winter blues. How can we stay active when the world is cold, and pitchers and catchers don’t report for another month?
Here are a few ideas:
- Little things do add up, for good and for bad. Take an extra lap around the kitchen before grabbing that snack. Go up and down the stairs once or twice more than you need to. Get up off the couch a few times during commercials. Those extra steps will add up more than you think.
- It’s never too late to pick up a new hobby. We have some great trails in the valley to try snowshoeing, snowmobiling or dog-sled racing. Start slow and don’t compare yourself against people that are already good at it. Everybody starts somewhere. A word of caution: I strongly recommend against cross-country skiing. That’s not a professional opinion, that’s just common sense because it’s boring work with no payoff at the end.
- A gym membership or fitness class is likely more affordable than you think. There are great options in the valley, and we are happy to help you find the best fit for you.
- Watch my kids for a day. Seriously, they will run you into the ground and you will feel great after all that energy is burned off. Tell you what, I’ll even make that a free service. I’m just that generous.
Staying active is an important part of our health and wellness. Chiropractic care is especially important during these winter months. It can help you feel less stiff and achy on the cold mornings, and chiropractic will help you move and feel your best. Give us a call at 888-5477 to schedule an appointment or to ask any questions that you may have.
Christmas can be a magical time of year. It can also be difficult. Family and travel can cause stress and pains, both real and emotional. There are some tricks to thriving this Christmas season.
The first thing: Take time for you. Don’t let the pressure of the season to throw you off from what you need to do. Don’t skip those workouts or other wellness needs. I know you think that you need to re-clean the house again before those visitors arrive but consider this: The only people that judge you are the ones that you don’t want to come back ever. Make sure you are getting those chiropractic adjustments and massage visits.
Second: Remember that this is supposed to be fun. There is no such thing as the “perfect Christmas”. The best Christmas I remember is the one where my wife and I were stuck in the Midwest without family nearby. It was nothing like the Christmases before or after. We ended up eating at a classy Denny’s because an ice storm had kept us from getting to the grocery store. Nothing says Christmas dinner like a Grand Slam breakfast and a waitress that didn’t want to be there. The point is, Christmas (and pretty much anything else in life) is what we make it.
Third: Get adjusted and massaged before and/or after you travel. Loading luggage, driving, flying, and sleeping in random beds are all hard on your body. Get right before you leave and get fixed when you come back. If you want, I’ll even write an official looking letter restricting your activities to watching football and eating treats all Christmas. Your wife might not honor it, but at least we tried.