Springtime in the Valley of the Sun is ripe with opportunities to indulge in the fun of life. We feel the increased energy as people crowd the valley to partake in nonstop activities in near perfect weather. Many of us feel a revival of our active routines. Gym visits, fitness class attendance, outdoor excursions, and clean eating routines undergo resurgence.

While it’s wonderful to resume our quests for self-improvement, it probably won’t last. Falling back into the same program means falling back into the same end result. Complicate this with the fact that we have changed and may not be able to attempt the same undertakings. It’s time for a little personal spring cleaning and maybe a little self-reflection.

Why does is hurt here? How do I fix this? Why do I feel this way? 

Balance – Nature finds a way

Our bodies are transformable. You want to inflate your muscles? There’s program for that. You want bigger boobs? There’s a procedure for that. You want clearer eyesight? There a treatment for that. You want a stronger mind? I’m sure there’s an app for that. There’s always a cost. Human physiology is more sensitive than we realize.

For over fifteen years of my life I studied and practiced every discipline of weightlifting I could find. Bodybuilding, powerlifting, Olympic lifts, CrossFit – I wanted to master them all. It was fun, I learned a lot, and I forced changes in my body envied by peers. I’m still paying for those changes.

I’ve spent all of last year in physical therapy.

The conditions manifesting in my physique is the cost of altering the God given balance within me. I will never be 100 percent, and I’m happy that way. I got what I wanted and I’m paying the price of obtainment. I’m not trying to relive my former accomplishments. I’m reestablishing my starting point.

An important lesson – the location of symptoms within us is not the source of concern. When a person complains about lower back discomfort we examine what’s happening in their hips and legs. If they have neck pain, we’ll see how the rest of the spine is moving. Shoulder issues? Let’s check out the chest and upper back. Something feel abnormal in your left leg? I’ll bet your right handed.

Why does that matter?

Everything within us is connected and our bodies fight to maintain equilibrium in every way. Pain is often the result of overcorrection. Our habitual natures encourage routines that ignore subtle, but potentially detrimental ailments, while maintaining body balance is key.

Adam2At least twice a week I have a client complain about chronic pain around the hips, shoulders, or spine. These people routinely practice a repetitive activity such as biking, running, tennis or even yoga. The lack of countermovement leads to tightness, overdevelopment and often the opposite in the opposing muscles and connective tissue.

This is a great opportunity to learn something new.

“Switching it up” doesn’t mean just jumping into a new program. Sometimes it’s a matter of realizing that we don’t know what we’re doing. Even seasoned teachers and instructors value continuing education. We should spend the extra time to work with a professional to understand how our body is moving and why a revamp of the routine is needed.

Take a class, go to a workshop, or schedule a private session. Even running is not simply one foot in front of the other. Often, when we don’t like something different, it’s because we don’t appreciate the variances. Maybe we’ve been missing out on our true love.

Let’s listen to our bodies to enhance the enjoyment of our lives without forcing something unnatural. If we’re happy with complacency then let’s die as a beast of burden. As for me, I’d rather be a stallion than an ass.