Living With Chronic Pain
Do you ever have days where it feels like every muscle and joint in your body is aching? Do you struggle to get out of bed? Are you trying to juggle your pain with other daily demands? Are you doing repetitive movements that affect the way you stand, sit, and/or move around?
Taking out the garbage, walking up the stairs, getting up and down from the floor.
Sitting at a desk for several hours, playing with children/grandchildren or pets, bending over.
Grocery shopping, work, etc., have become increasingly difficult?
Do you wonder “...will this ever get better, is it possible to reduce my pain/discomfort?!”
The simple answer is YES! You have the ability to decrease your discomfort and increase mobility over time!
BUT it takes hard work and dedication to improve the way you move.
You need to be READY, WILLING, and ABLE to put in the WORK!
Your individual needs may/will be different from the needs of others.
Professionals qualified to use ‘Corrective Exercise’ techniques have been helping clients improve their mobility, flexibility, balance, coordination and strength, i.e., through ‘Evidence-Based Practices’.
Hello! My name is Coach Corinna. I am certified through NASM as a Corrective Exercise Specialist (CES). I am a TFW Coach, Personal Trainer (CPT), and Precision Nutrition (PN) Coach.
I graduated from UW River Falls in 2018 with a B.S in Exercise and Sports Science. My passion is working with individuals who are recovering from injuries, lacking general mobility, and/or who desire to live a healthier life. Together, we will work towards your goals one day at a time!
My fitness journey has had vast hills, detours, setbacks, and rocky roads.
There were a couple of times when I got stuck in ‘quicksand’, anxious, scared, and sinking fast. The more I fought my body, ignoring my pain became normal.
When I am not coaching, training, or working at my second job, I am at home with my fiance and our “Zoo”; 4 cats, 3 dogs, a snake, a chameleon, 2 geckos, and some fishies. There is never a dull moment! Growing up I participated in various sports, the main ones being gymnastics, soccer, springboard diving, and snowboarding. I was rough on my body. I learned to play through the pain.
I chose to ignore my injuries, which included countless sprains and strains, a couple fractures/breaks and tears, even a ruptured ligament.
Is there an event in your life where you look back and think “Man, I knew that was a bad idea, but I did it anyway…?” Whelp, that’s how I ended up rupturing, arguably, the most important ligament in the back of the pelvis, which is involved in transferring force through your core.
I ruptured my sacrotuberous ligament (located on the back of your pelvis) while snowboarding in 2015. Having no idea what damage I had done to my body while snowboarding out west, I continued to ride the mountains for the next 3 days; then made a 24 hour drive home.
By 19 years old I had done more physical damage to my body than people do by the age of 50. It was a mentally challenging place to be. It still is challenging.
Many people assume that I do not know what “chronic pain” is, and that I am “too young”
In the blink of an eye, I went from being very physically active and fit → to barely being able to move without excruciating pain. My self-confidence took a big hit. My eating habits deteriorated. I was eating little to no food, causing more stress within my body. It felt as though my body was the enemy, it refused/resisted to communicate with me.
I was not unable to sit or stand for long periods of time. Walking was difficult, I had to compensate for my injured ligament, causing wear and tear in other areas of my body. I wanted to be active like everyone else my age. I wanted to move without extreme limiting pain. At the time, my doctors had no answer as to why I was in such pain. I did years of physical therapy, had many MRI’s and CT scans.
I was stuck in a positive feedback loop (the reaction leads to an increase in that reaction). At times, I was unsure if the pain was real or if I was making it up in my head. I felt crazy.
After having bilateral surgery on my hips in 2015/2016, my mobility improved but my core instability did not improve. I would explain my pain to my doctors and they would check the big areas around my SI joints (hips, low back, uneven pelvis, glutes), sending me to multiple specialists, but not checking the SI joints themselves.
It felt like no one was listening to me... I got really good at hiding my pain because I felt embarrassed and/or weak. Like maybe I wasn’t trying hard or doing enough. I was in constant chronic pain. But, I looked like a “normal” healthy young adult. After disconnecting from my pain for several years, I began to find ways to manage and work through my pain.
I’ve used acupuncture, therapeutic massage, hot stone massage, muscle activation technique (MAT), chiropractic adjustments, electric stimulation, yoga, graston, mobility, and self-myofascial release (SMR), and several other non-invasive techniques. The combination of care/recovery helpe
d to manage my pain from week to week, but my muscle tension never seemed to go away.
Identifying the “root” cause of my pain went on for another 4 years after the hip surgeries. I knew things were bad when it became more difficult to move around each day, physical care became more difficult. Showering seemed like an impossible task some days. Walking, sitting, and standing produced pain and physical limitations.
While recovering from surgery I became interested in human anatomy and muscle recovery. I never imagined I’d be a Coach and Personal Trainer. I didn’t think that it was something I could be good at (this was only my low self-confidence talking).
Nearing the end of 2019, I learned that I had several ganglion cysts in my foot (causing pain for at least 8 years). This was the point when I realized the extent to which I was not addressing my body's needs. I didn’t surrender to/or work through the pain. I chose to fight against my body, cutting off communication to the injured areas. I had surgery early 2020 to remove the cysts from the bottom middle of my foot.
In January of 2020, I finally found a surgeon who was able to diagnose my ruptured ligament. The sacrotuberous ligament is fan shaped; connects in 3 areas, the sacrum, the hip, and the bottom of the pelvis. This ligament is extremely important for weight bearing, stability, and load/energy transferring.
Unfortunately, this ligament is one that cannot be reattached to the body.
The only option to significantly reduce my pain was surgery, to stabilize the affected SI joint.
Six months later, the joint was fused with 3 titanium rods. 2 of 3 rods fused properly. One rod was able to wiggle/toggle and move around when I moved.
Left alone over time, this would cause extra pain and damage to the surroun
ding bone while simultaneously aggravating the SI nerve (sacroiliitis). In April 2021, 10 months post SI joint fusion, we took out the “failed” rod. I am now recovering, and excited for this next step in my fitness journey. I am hopeful that removing the rod will help to alleviate additional pain that started roughly 3 months post surgery. Now it’s time to buckle down, do the physical therapy, fuel my body with good foods, and keep my mind strong and focused on my goal.
I’ve learned so much about the human body through this process. On my journey, I got certified as a corrective exercise specialist to learn more about managing my own pain. Since obtaining the certification I have worked with numerous individuals on an 8 week mobility program. The program includes three mobility assessments, education, corrective stretches and exercises tailored to your needs, and mobility flows
I’m excited to share my knowledge! I hope to help others navigate through their lack of mobility and their fitness needs. If after reading this article you feel like you would benefit from a program addressing mobility or working 1:1 to work towards reaching your health and fitness goals, reach out!
Contact me today! I am happy to answer any questions that you may have about the mobility program or getting started with virtual/in person 1:1 coaching.
Go to this link and lets start with a conversation: https://ohptfw.lpages.co/corinnas-journey