masqthephlsphr: (ev0l)
This was on the internets today, mocking me with its personal relevance:

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/killer-chairs-how-desk-jobs-ruin-your-health/

In my writing class this week, we had to do a meditation exercise to learn awareness of our bodies (good writing involves being in the body, doncha know) while sitting down. I was a rebel. I lay down for it instead.

Earlier, on Wednesday, my PT asked how my level of pain was. I think he meant "between now, and when we started a few weeks ago." My answer was, "Well, it depends."

"On?"

Well, (1) which part of my body are we talking about? Oh, and, (2) my chair, (3) my chair, (4) my chair, and (5) my chair…..

I am in the process of chair shopping for both work and home, but actually helpful chairs are customized, and customized costs bucks. It is not something you purchase lightly.

I am a computer programmer by day, and a reader and writer by night. I do watch a little TV, but TV is hardly the problem when you are going to sit in the same chair anyway to work on a story, or read the internets, or read a book.

Of course, there is wisdom in getting up every once in a while from these activities--especially if your chair isn't custom-built for comfort--and stretching out all those muscles, and doing so for more than just a brief piddle-break or to grab a snack. On weekends, when I can spend an entire day in my chair writing, I find myself off fiddling, several times a day, on household projects elsewhere in the house, or in the garage. It's like I have to get up and do something, and that's probably a saving grace.

At work, it's more complicated. They want you, you know, doing your work, and at work, when I'm in my chair, I'm often pinned down by a jury-rigged set-up of lumbar pillows, blankets, multiple heating pads, foot rest, neck rest, lap desk and the half dozen other things I need so as not to get sore within fifteen minutes. Standing up and getting settled back down becomes, therefore, a very complicated affair.

Oh, plus, taking my shoes off and having to put them back on every time.

I shudder to think, though, what my body would be like now if I'd stayed in teaching. My dear old dad, who was in retail for forty years, was in pretty bad shape by the time he retired at 63.

But yeah, all that aside, I really need to get off my ass more, esp at the work place.


Scene countdown, 11/7/14: 89 24%
masqthephlsphr: (trubel)
(1) Had my first PT session for my neck/shoulders this AM. I was at the therapist for about an hour and a half between early arrival, paperwork, interview with the therapist, and actual therapy. Therapist did heat therapy and a massage, which was great, but also pressure point testing to find tender spots ("Ouch, there's one!") and of course taught me some "exercises to do at home" which while good for the shoulders/neck, did not make my back happy.

(2) New Grimm season starts tonight! There is something not to be grim about.

(3) I wrote another short story, 2,974 words. Class busy-ness makes me insane, but... story!
masqthephlsphr: (shane)
I have arthritis. In my knees and my back, and now my neck. For years, I've watched both my parents become increasingly disabled, and I know I am d00med. D00med. Last week, I went to my orthopedic specialist who could instantly whip me into an X-ray machine and have pictures of my skeleton popped up on the back-lit board fifteen minutes later. But diagnosis is easy. Intervention, that's harder.

Physical therapy is always their first line. Last year, I learned a series of exercises to strengthen my back. The clinic offered me a nerve-numbing procedure, but it was too expensive and painful for something that might only last six months, so I nixed that. This week, I'm returning to PT for my neck.

I'm doing what I can to change my environment. I recently got a new, ergonomic chair for work, and one of those neck-supporting pillows for my bed at home. But the chair I lounge and write in at home has GOT to be replaced. I've jury-rigged pillows to fit under my knees and under my neck and under my lumbar, all in an attempt to compensate for the chair being arthritis-unfriendly, but what I need, since I use that chair constantly and for long stretches, is something genuinely ergonomic.

Only problem is, ergonomic recliners are also mega-expensive. I am perfectly willing to spend the money on a chair that will work for me, but I have had bad experiences walking into stores, trying out chairs that seem all right on the show room floor, and then are killing me two weeks later and can't be returned (usually, because they're customized in some way).

I will ask the physical therapist for recommendations about how to buy a good ergonomic recliner, but really, I'm not optimistic.

To top that off, somehow I also managed to pull a muscle in my shoulder, and that's making sitting and turning my head even more of a pain. Will mention it to the PT.

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