The Beefy Chiefs Step Up Challenge has taught me a few key lessons since I joined this past July. I had to address mobility challenges that hindered my ability to keep active over the past few years. It was nothing too serious, but enough pain and suffering to allow me to embrace a sedentary way of life. Apparently I am a workaholic and have focused myself on work that involves a lot of sitting and traveling.
The Step Up Challenge has helped me with the motivation I needed. I figured I was beefy enough to qualify for the challenge and set out on the fit bit path. It took a good seven days to break through the pain of walking every day. The targets pre-set in the fit bit helped me focus on meeting the goals of ten thousand steps. I had to get help from my doctor, naturopath and massage therapists to help address the pain, flexibility and mental challenges I was facing as I continued down the path.
Once I started to consistently hit and exceed the daily step counts I challenged myself to do better and keep up with the cool kids in the Beefy Chiefs Step Up group. I soon found that I could not physically keep this up as I started to have injuries that took longer to heal up and started to become a little miserable. I was motivated to keep up the pace and soon bought new foot wear and started to take medications for swelling that did not really help.
After several visits to my massage therapist/naturopath, he helped me understand the importance of diet as a lot of foods were contributing to inflammation in my body and I had to make adjustments. As I started to feel better and my strength improved I was able to increase my time spent on walking. I soon had to deal with the amount of time needed to be able to do the walking, and keep up with work and life in general.
I realized that my leisure time was eroding away, my “negative time” of doing nothing productive was affected. I adjusted my routine to allow for walking more often during the day and that helped me perform better at work. I am able to deal with and think things through on a walk, where before I would carry that crap home and try to lose it with my negative time.
After all this, I have learned more about myself and how to create balance in my life by making changes for physical, mind, body and spirit. I now have very little negative time of doing nothing and have a reasonable amount of time for walking which helps me do more work and still have time for family.
Ernest Armann, First Nations Health Council – Vancouver Coastal