Pain Management Program day 3

Last night was a much better night in the sleep department. Leading in with a poor night of sleep the night before and a full day of activity during the day were probably key factors in getting a good nights sleep. Figuring out how to turn off the 4:00 am alarm on the borrowed stop watch also helped.

First thing this morning we started with stretching. The routine seems to go fast through the various exercises. I always thought that a fibromyalgia patient should hold the poses longer than other people. But I guess this program is also intended for any person with pain issues. The key thing is that there are many stretches that I have never done before. After the 30 minutes was done, I felt well stretched. Then we went for our second round of icing.

Today I only went for the upper and lower back. I was anxious to get started because I remembered the dramatic feeling of having most of my back being numb compared to the constant pain of before. I also am looking forward to understanding more about the retraining of the central nervous system. I know this is just one of the tools but it’s pretty dramatic.

I also started my endurance exercises today including a speed walk, regular walking, bicycle and stairs. These have all set durations or steps based on endurance tests that I completed yesterday to determine where I should start. Then I have goals of improvement that will be tested again at the end of the week. Between each of these exercises I’m required to rest to start teaching my central nervous system an increase/decrease of levels for pacing of activity. This will be transferred to a plan in the future for all activity that I do.

This afternoon we went to the therapeutic pool and did more stretching movements. There were a number of the stretches that I could only partially complete due to my flexibility limitations. There was a particular leg stretch that caused cramping that I frequently suffer from. The Physical Therapist assisted and was quickly able to show me how to adjust the stretch and quickly relieve the cramp.

The day was concluded with relaxation. Not relaxing (not watching the TV or reading) but relaxation. Today’s relaxation consisted of guided imagery. Anything that starts with laying on a padding mat with a pillow is just alright with me! Rex the Psychologist guided us through breathing exercises and then started guiding us to a warm place with descriptions of shapes and colors but let us fill in the place that we would go. I ended up on a tropical beach with a drink that tasted of mango. I was surprised that I got into it as much as I did.

So another day is done. I’m relaxing (watching TV) in my room and contemplating another day.

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