We’ve all heard the saying “no pain, no gain”, but what is pain really – and do you really have to experience pain to get the gain?
Personally, I think pain depends on the person. When Steve was trainer ABC’s weight loss reality show, Fat March, some of the contestants thought they were having heart attacks when their heart rate increased. They had never experienced cardio before and it was painful to them. Many of them had lived their lives as comfortable as they could – to the point of putting a refrigerator in their bedroom so they didn’t have to walk all the way to the kitchen for a coke. However, if you’ve ever done an intense workout, you know what it feels like to tax your body. Is it uncomfortable? Yes. Is it bad for you? No. Does it feel good? Not to me! Does it feel good afterwards? Absolutely!
When this mantra was posted on Detour Bar’s facebook page, someone wrote: “if you’re working out to the point where it’s either painful or you experience post-workout exhaustion… well, you’re doing it wrong and you’re not eating right… this isn’t motivational, it’s just plain dumb.”
The Pain that Drives You
First, let’s talk about emotional pain. Pain isn’t always a muscle burning, heart pounding, or a joint aching. Sometimes pain is the feeling you have when you struggle to fit in your plane seat. It can be the painful realization you are no longer fitting in your clothes. It could be the bad report you get from your doctor, as he tells you your unhealthy lifestyle is going to kill you if you don’t do something about it. Pain can be the looks people give you, or the rejection you have received. Pain could be the shortness of breath you get from just going up one flight of stairs. Pain can be loneliness, depression, heaviness or despair that is driving you to get healthy.
Just getting to the gym can be a pain, the painstaking effort it takes to just get to the gym – to pack your gym bag after a really long day and keep showing up, even though you are too tired, too stressed or too busy. It could be the embarrassment and wake-up call you get when you are the last to finish a workout, and you realize just how out of shape you are. It could be the flighting moment of doubt or defeat in yourself – when you realize “this” is not going be easy, BUT you know if you stick with it, it will be worth it. All of these definitions of pain can drive you, if you choose. Or you can latch on to them, and let them define you.
Now, let’s talk about physical pain. Does it take literal pain to get ahead? The answer is: that depends how you define pain. My workouts are painful – not the bad kind of pain, but the good kind of pain. Some people may disagree. Some people may do the exact same workout and enjoy the muscle burn. To me, I’d define that as pain. My workouts can be unCOMFORTable, but that’s because I’m pushing my body. I have spurts of breathing so hard, it’s uncomfortable. Sometimes my muscles are burning so much, they feel like they are going to burst into flames. Even my runs can be a bit painful, especially if I run after leg day. Do my workouts hurt? Yes. Are they hurting my body? No. BUT, if I worked in my comfort zone (always trying to stay comfortable), I would never get stronger, never get faster, never get better.
“I hated every minute of training, but I said, ‘Don’t quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion.”
Even if the workout is easy and relatively comfortable during the workout, sometimes you experience pain after the workout. Sore muscles, fatigue, or normal wear and tear on a 42 year old body can be uncomfortable too. Sure, I could quit and say this is for the birds, but am I really going to let a little bit of discomfort stop me? Nope! Why? Because I focus on the reward more than the work. And you know what? The more I train, the more the definition of pain changes.
Now, pain is the feeling I get when I overeat or neglect my body. Living unhealthy would be very painful to me. If I didn’t workout. I would just trade good pain for bad pains. Instead of sore muscles, I’d have sore joints and ailments due to weak and tight muscles. I’d have painful feelings, insecurities and stress due to letting my body go.
As we age, everyone will experience pain at one point or other. You decide what kind of pain you want to experience – destructive pain, or constructive pain. You can let past painful moments drive you to improve. You can let the pain you may experience during a challenging workout remind you that you are changing.
Whatever your definition of “pain” is, let it drive you, not beat you.
OK, before you get too excited, I can’t help you with your husband or kid, if they are what you consider to be a pain your butt. I’m talking about a literal pain in your backside.
If you’ve ever suffered from a throbbing aching pain in your derriere, that possibly even radiates down your leg, you have experienced Sciatica. Sciatica, literally is a pain in the butt – and it can be fixed pretty easily.
Steve explains what Sciatica is often caused by and how to eliminate the pain. If you’ve been in pain due to Sciatica, you won’t BELIEVE how these simple exercises can change your life!
4 Tips to More Pain Prevention:
1. Maintain good posture
2. Take your wallet out when driving or sitting for long periods of time
3. Do the above stretches often through out the day, holding each stretch for a minimum of 30 seconds. (no bouncing)
4. Take anti-imflammatories when needed
5. Avoid heat – Icing an injury reduces inflammation, where heat induces an inflammatory response
Subscribe for more tips!
Subscribe to pFITtv for more helpful videos!
“We all have garbage to deal with. You can chose to handle it now or later – the choice is yours.”
Desperate paparazzi catches poor Jessica Biel in her robe taking out the trash. Wow. Are we really shocked that stars have garbage too? We seem just as surprised when they have other life problems as well. Ironically, garbage and our physical, as well as mental, problems have a lot in common.
My dad once gave me some great advice about life, and not handling the “garbage” we carry. He said, “It’s like trash. You can just let it pile up and packing stuff on top of it, but eventually it’s gonna start to stink and you’ll have to deal with it.”
Life is truly like that – especially with our health. We can ignore the trash in our lives – our weight, health, weakness, tight muscles, poor diet and inactivity. No matter how we cover it up with nice clothes, fancy cars, money, pretty make-up and a fake smile, eventually you won’t be able to hide it, and life will start to really stink.
It is so easy to procrastinate. It’s so easy to push it back and let something else take priority. But, our bodies talk, and believe me, it will start screaming at you eventually. We can fool ourselves into thinking our back pain will go away, our weight will come off, and “we’ll kick this”, but what exactly are you really doing about it today? Are you just covering up the stench or are you really dealing with it? So often we do things to mask the problem, or to help us live with the problem, but we aren’t handling the problem.
4 Steps to Dealing with the Garbage Affecting Our Health:
1. What stinks? As you read this, what things come to mind that you know you need to get a grip on? Make a list. Is it your weight? Is it pain? Is it confidence? Is it your overall health? Is it a lack of discipline to maintain a consistent fitness regimen? You can’t fix it until you know what needs to be fixed.
2. How do you handle it? Some trash isn’t stinky, but it sill has to be taken out. On the other hand, some trash stinks so bad, you need to get it as far away from your house as possible. How bad is the “garbage” you have to deal with? Can you deal with it yourself or do you need a hazmat team to contain the situation? Some things can be handled on your own, but other issues require a pro. Beware of trying to handle heavy stuff alone.
3. How long will you commit to maintaining it? We all know that taking the garbage out once is not enough. We get NEW garbage that will have to be delt with too. It’s really unrealistic to think this will be a simple fix and not require maintenance. As you work on one problem, don’t be surprised if another problem pops up. Just add it to the list and work on it too, knowing in the end result will be a clean bill of health.
4. What are things that need to be tossed out? A lot of us have extra garbage we deal with because we are not letting go of crap that clutters our lives. Not only will you need to work on stuff that stinks, but sometimes things need to go that are either getting in the way, are useless, or are hindering you. The first step is to “clean house” of food, people, bad habits, excuses, etc. that will interfere with your plan. Just like cleaning house, it’s constant. Success will require a continual cleaning and straightening of priorities.
Don’t wait for the perfect conditions, the perfect situation, more money, more time, less pain, more energy, more motivation, friends, kids to grow up, workload to get lighter, or anything else to start working on your health.
“Farmers who wait for perfect weather never plant.
If they watch every cloud, they never harvest.”
Note on Pain: Many aches and pains are due to weak and tight muscles. Unfortunately, many people avoid exercise in fear of making it worse. Pain rarely goes away on its own, and often gets much worse. Even many skeletal issues are due to muscles pulling you out of whack. As you strengthen weak muscles and loosen tight muscles, your skeletal system won’t have all these tweaked muscles yanking on them. There are SO many pains that would go away just from stretching alone, but the combination of strengthening and stretching literally can be a miracle worker.
This was a great blog for all of you who have gotten hurt and have wondered if you should workout or not….
No matter how careful you are in the gym, sooner or later you will be faced with some sort of achy extremity or throbbing appendage. What you learn next could redefine how you train during injuries.
I got caught in an arm bar last Monday night at the Forge, where I am learning mma. Yes, apparently I suck; however, after being caught in this rather precarious maneuver, I thought my elbow had been broke. Not so much from my arm going numb, or the excruciating pain in my elbow and shoulder, but mostly because of the huge tearing sound that made my opponent let go and say “did I break it”. Not exactly what you want to hear. Now the critical point… Am I just “hurt”, or am I “injured”. If I’m hurt but not injured, should I continue fighting or should I rest? How do I know?
READ STEVE’S BLOG to get the answers.
Pain is a very powerful thing. It can change your attitude, bank account, happiness, focus and entire lifestyle. Although you may not be able to completely control the actual pain itself, you can often control what causes it.
Poor posture is responsible for a large majority of neck and back problems. People hunch over the computer, and slouch on the couch for hours. After extended periods of time back muscles begin painful spasms, which pull on other muscles and vertebra. Before you know it you’re running to the doctor for help.
Here are 5 simple tips to becoming pain-free: Read the rest of this entry