Routines in daily life that suck the energy right out of you? The brain is a funny thing, it thrives on variety, but it doesn’t like the effort necessary to obtain it. The brain loves patterns and prediction. Wait! You just said the brain thrives on variety, but likes patterns. Yep, thats the crazy ass brain for ya. The brain is always thinking ahead to the next moment in time trying to predict the outcome and making adjustments along the way.
It’s not crazy about surprises and is hesitant to go outside the comfort zone of a normal routine. This applies to all aspects of life; social, personal, work, and fitness.
One of the biggest causes of musculoskeletal pain or fitness training plateaus are daily habits. Routines that we get stuck in and consider them normal and comfortable, yet cause harm. We get stuck in convenience mode taking the path of least resistance to whatever appears familiar and easy.
YOU CANNOT GET WELL IN THE SAME ENVIRONMENT
YOU GOT ILL WITHIN
The key to breaking through pain and performance barriers is to make neural hack changes to your daily movement habits. Hacks of variability, variety, and variation. Otherwise known as doing lots of different things whenever you can.
The solution doesn’t have to be complicated to work and the strategies below will have massive carryover to improving the quality of your life. Nothing happens until something moves, not even quick fix hacks. Get ready to move more of yourself, more often, and in many different ways. Your brain and your body will thank you.
Stand on one leg when brushing teeth in barefeet
This will definitely challenge your balance and work stabilization in your entire body. Not to mention massive sensory feedback through your foot. Make sure you alternate legs. Be ready for a smile too. It’s damn near impossible not to laugh and smile when you first do this one.
When watching TV do it from the ground for five minutes at a time.
Going to the ground makes you change positions often and keeps your mind alert. Bet you can’t do the same position for long and that’s a good thing. Yep, that’s also a challenge. The ground provides massive sensory feedback to the brain and helps improve motor control; patterning.
Take the stairs not the escalator/Take the stairs not the elevator
Does this one really need any explanation? You know you need to start, so get to it. You will probably be the only one there so try not to get too lonely.
Walk backwards towards your car the last 10 feet.
Who cares if someone looks at you funny. That’s a bonus. When was the last time you actually walked backwards? Can’t remember? Exactly my point.
Jump up-and-down in place 10 times 1 to 2 inches off the floor.
The bounce will help your balance system and get everything moving around more. Going in the vertical plane and fighting gravity is great for the heart. You work the calves which are known as your second heart. This one is a powerhouse of simplicity.
Walk in a circle to your left three times walk in a circle to your right three times.
Movement is based in circles, spirals, and rotations. Even your DNA is helical. You form embryologically in spirals. Too much of our daily life is spent moving straightforward in lines. Get your circular mojo motion on and don’t be surprised if you feel a bit dizzy. That means you needed it. Lights up your vestibular inner ear. system.
Walk around on your tippy toes for 60 seconds with no shoes
Think of it as high heels without the shoe. It’s a great assessment for the strength in your calves and can tell if you may have a problem with a nerve in your lower back. Inflamed nerves in the lower back and calves will cause spasm and pain when you walk on your toes. If that happens, STOP!
Walk around on your heels for 60 seconds
This is great for working the Anterior calf and you will feel it all the way up to your abdominals. This simple motion engages your abs like crazy. Double win! It may feel awkward at first and that’s the value. You may be very sore the following day. When you do things that are not convenient that often happens.
Make up your own crazy shit
Get creative and just have fun moving in life. There are endless ways for you to change your body. Remember, pain is a request for change. A change in what? How you live. So let’s get started shall we? Moving is the quickest way to do it.
You can start slowly by doing just one of these a day. Hell, you can do all of them if you want. Get creative and think of inconvenient ways to move around. The perspective makes life fun and exciting. Step outside the norm and give your brain and nervous system a shock and awe in sensorimotor input. Ruts suck, so get moving and watch the mojo magic happen.
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STOP CHASING PAIN by Perry Nickelston
A Vital Guide for healing your body, moving well, and regaining control of your life