How has working from home for the last 18+ months effected my body?

In the last couple of months, I’ve noticed an increasing trend. One that has really puzzled me. A lot of my new clients are complaining of pain in the feet, heels and calves.

Within this group of people, I’ve found that many of them are restricted in mobility of not only their calves, but their hips. These mobility discrepancies can be directly causing discomfort in the feet or heels.

I’m also seeing more and more people who are complaining of neck pain, headaches, burning between the shoulder blades, jaw pain and fatigue. You can check out my previous article if you want more info on that!

What else do all (or most) of these people have in common?

It’s been a long, long time since the start of this pandemic. Many people have been working from their homes for it’s entire duration! The people who I’m working with that share these common complaints, all work from home. They admit to staying seated for much more of the day than they would if they were in the office or workplace. This means less face to face contact with others and less standing up from a desk. More sitting where previously the job was active, even if the activity was to run paperwork or chat with a coworker. Or, those who had standup desks at work, potentially do not have that luxury at home.

Over time, that absolutely has an effect on how the body functions and feels.

Another thing that I’m starting to piece together is that this season is a vicious cycle of emotional ups and downs. Anticipation, hope, disappointment. We are constantly uncertain of what the future will hold, unable to make solid plans or feel some sort of security. Over time, that tires a person.

I’m finding that many people who were previously active and passionate about fitness are now feeling dull and unmotivated. Less enthusiastic about moving their body.

Heavy emotion and less movement contribute to increased pain, decreased function.

As the cycle continues, increased frustration, decreased movement.

If you’re feeling that way, I want to be the one to tell you that there are a lot of others feeling the same way.

You are not alone.

We are not alone in our emotions.

We are not alone in our pain.

I’m also here to tell you that I can help!

Movement is so powerful. It can improve a mood and switch it 180 degrees. So even if you aren’t ready to get back into a full gym routine, running class or yoga studio, there are smaller steps you can take on a consistent, daily basis to get you more motivated and excited to move again. Start small and know that any sort of movement makes a difference.

Whether you’re trying to restore some sort of activity routine, take care of some aches and

pains or tightness from sitting all day, or just to FEEL BETTER, these things are for you! Take a break every hour that you’re working and give these a go. Set an alarm on your phone to keep track!

  1. Sit on the floor! Do you wind down at the end of the day reading or watching tv?Spend that time, or 20-30 mins a day cross legged, legs straight, sitting in 90/90.

2. Cat cow: Start on your hands and knees. Push belly button towards the floor. At the same time, look up and push your chest out.

Then, pull your chin to your chest, arch your back upwards (like an angry cat!) and tuck your bum under. Repeat this 10 times.

Don't forget to breathe!

3. Child’s pose with deep breathing: Start on hands and knees with toes curled on floor behind you. Bring your knees a bit wider and sit back onto your heels. At the same time, tuck chin to chest while keeping your hands where they are.

Take 5 deep breaths. Repeat 3 times.

4. Thread the needle: Start on hands and knees. Take your L hand to support you. Pick up the R hand and reach towards the L while keeping knees in the same position. Take a deep breath and return to starting position.

Repeat 3 times per side, and switch.

5. Side stretch: Stand with your L foot planted. Pick up the R foot and cross it in front of the L. Make sure to keep your hips facing forward. Uncross and return to starting position. Repeat 10 times per side.

To progress this, as you cross the R foot in front of the L, also reach up as high as you can with the L hand. Repeat for desired reps, and switch sides.

No matter what your day looks like, try to move. No matter what the movement looks like, it will help! Questions? Reach out! I'm always here to help!

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