Guest Column: 6 common causes of chronic daily pain
Published 9:00 am Friday, April 26, 2019
By Bill Villarreal
Bill Villarreal is a certified personal trainer, corrective exercise specialist and fitness nutrition specialist who works at Anytime Fitness.
“If I knew that I was going to live this long, I would have taken better care of myself.” Have you ever heard anyone say this before, or have you had this realization yourself? Whatever it may be, it’s very common and is something I hear every single day while working in the fitness industry.
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Why do our bodies hurt so much?
Sometimes we suffer from pain but have no idea what caused it. Maybe we decide to lose some weight by walking or running, but our knees start to hurt. Or, you want to tone up your body, but your neck and back hurt. You may have a good level of strength and fitness, but you experience nagging pain and injury that hinders you from making it to the next level.
It all really boils down to your fascia system, kinetic chain and how your body works which gives you the power to end or minimize pain. I will be going over the six most common causes of chronic daily pain. Pay attention, and do something about it, please. Not later, not tomorrow, right now. Make a decision, draw the line and be the best version of you that you can be.
1) Elevated stress: We all feel some type of stress through work, school, family, etc. — let’s just say life. When life becomes excessive, you feel anxiety, anger, irritability and frustration. This wreaks havoc on your body. Your blood pressure rises, and your breath becomes shallow, which causes your muscles to tighten from your neck down through your back. This kind of discomfort will cause headaches and pain.
2) Too much sitting: Computers, meetings, meals, school and couch time at night contribute to spending hours in one position. Your butt takes the brunt of your weight, and your chest gets tight and raises your shoulders forward. You may slump and hunch forward for hours of poor posture. That’s quite a recipe for all sorts of aches and pains. Bodies are meant to move.
3) HRD — Hip rotational deficit: This is so destructive to your structural system. I’m talking about the glutes, piriformis, psoas, hip flexors etc. — pretty much the entire hip complex. If you don’t work on the mobility and flexibility surrounding the pelvis and hips, it negatively impacts the length and tension of muscle and fascia. Body movement becomes insufficient and causes joint pain.
4) Poorly designed exercise program: Is there enough rotational training, core strength and flexibility in your program? Your push muscles should be on a 1:1 ratio with your pull. “Mirror” muscles such as chest, biceps and abs make you “all show and no go.” Your body moves in multiple planes and dimensions. Your program should be functional to real life.
5) Too little stretching: The average person has serious flexibility issues, especially in the hips, chest and hamstrings. The older we get, the tighter they become. Not stretching properly leads to muscle tightness, discomfort, pain and injury. Enough said!
6) Poor recovery and regeneration: It isn’t just about exercise. You also need to rest and recover after you train. Nutrition, sleep and flexibility are all part of the equation of a healthier lifestyle. I tell many of my clients that exercise and proper nutrition is the only fountain of youth that we have, so get up and start moving!
“It’s not whether you get knocked down, it’s whether you get up!” — Vince Lombardi