I try to take a walk or two every day. I picked up this book called the Mayo Clinic on back pain at a church rummage sale and the main thing I took away from it was the statement ... walking is the best thing you can do to prevent/manage back pain. A simple statement. But for whatever reason, after reading dozens upon dozens of books about stretching, yoga, living with pain, etc. etc, that is the statement that has made the most impact on me. I've lived with chronic back pain since taking a bad fall in my early 20s and it has gotten worse with time. The last couple of years it became so bad that I had weeks where I couldn't move without assistance.
It took me forever to finally reach a point where I've accepted the fact that my back isn't going to stop hurting but it can become much more user friendly if I do two things. Walk and stretch. Duh ... right?? Well I did those things before but not religiously and without fail. Now for the last year I do, and guess what?? Back pain is not at all gone but it is so much less and when I feel the signs of a doozy back pain starting I stretch and walk even more and knock on wood, I haven't had one of my "can't walk for weeks" attacks since I began this routine a year and a half ago. Of course everyone's situation and backs are unique so this isn't medical advice it's just my personal experience.
I won't walk at night alone but if I take a daytime walk I like to bring along my camera to keep me company. I often wonder if the neighbors see me chasing after squirrels to get a good photo and think "there's that weird walker/squirrel chaser again." I don't listen to music because I'm afraid to wear earbuds while walking. I'm not an overly fearful person but the idea of not hearing someone come up from behind kind of spooks me. So that leaves visual stimulation for me. I know some of you would be totally fine with silence and nature but I'm just not one of those people.... not yet anyway. I like to look for fun things to take pictures of to keep my mind and imagination stimulated. I'll work on the just being zen in the future!
I'm not a good photographer but think that the more shots I take, the better chance I'll have to learn something eventually. And it's fun. On my list of things I'd love to do in the future is take a photography class. Who knows maybe in 2013 I'll do it.
Here are a few of the snaps I took on my walk the other day.
So if you live near me and you see me doing some crazy stuff in front of your house, don't call the cops, I'm basically harmless.