“Massage is just a luxury.” “Massage is something you get when you’re on vacation.” Massage is too expensive to do on a regular basis.” “Massage is not really necessary. It’s just something fun we get to do every once in awhile, like manicures/pedicures.”
Those are just some of the thoughts which used to run through my mind as I considered massage. In my opinion, those are all just myths. Massage has become and is a necessity for me. It is critical to my overall well-being: physical and emotional.
When did you begin your fitness journey?
In 2008, I decided I wanted to get in good shape so that when/if I have grandkids, I would be able to play with them like our grandma did with us. I still remember her playing Wiffle ball in the side yard, running the bases still donning her flowery apron! Yup, I wanted to be able to move like she did.
How did it begin and what advice would you give to others starting off?
My journey started by walking. It progressed to walking half-marathons, to lifting weights, and then to participating in my first triathlon! Now… let me pause here and say “Everyone’s fitness goals are different!” You may not want to do the same things I’ve done. But, maybe you just want to just see and feel what your best is? See how good you can feel? Be confident in who you are? Feel better physically than you do right now and not be in pain? I don’t know what your well-being goals are, only you can decide that for yourself 🙂
What were some of the biggest challenges/setbacks in your Journey?
As I became more active, I started to hear my body yelling at me to pay more attention. I began to realize I have an aching pain in my shoulder, my upper back is tense, my calves are tight, my neck is sore, jaw tight, and so on. The list was endless- I figured that all of these symptoms were just a way of life because of my activity level (and the fact that I sit at a desk working at a computer most of the day). My body was telling me it needed more attention, more relief. It needed some self-love.
As I was in the throws for my triathlon training, I got a massage while on vacation in Florida. The therapist and I chatted before he began. I explained my level of fitness activity and the fact that I was training for my first triathlon. Little did I know, his “day job” was working directly with athletic teams. He did massages in the salon on the side. It was after this particular massage that I realized how important it was for me to get massages not just for the relaxing experience, but also for physical/emotional wellness.
When I returned from vacation, I was excited to see that we have a massage therapist at Applied Fitness Solutions. I started going every six months or so. It helped, but my body wanted and needed more. It wasn’t until I had a conversation with Katie Schroeder after one of my massages that the light bulb went on. She encouraged me to think about getting regular massages, especially considering how much I was working my body and muscles. I needed to stop thinking about massages as a luxury.
I bought a package of 60-minute massages the next time I was there and scheduled monthly massages. “MONTHLY MASSAGES?! Are you kidding me? How can you afford monthly massages?” I decided that I couldn’t live without them, and adjusted my budget to make them a priority. I wanted to feel better. I wanted to get rid of those aches and pains I mentioned earlier. Massages accomplished that very goal. I was no longer having those chronic muscle aches, pains in my shoulder, and tightness in my back. If they do rear their ugly heads, the massage relieves them!
Monthly massages are now an integral part of my overall physical and emotional well-being. I cannot and, more importantly, will not go without them now. Massage is not a luxury. Massage is a necessity!
“Nance has been a true pleasure to work with from day one. Her positive attitude on life and her ‘go get em’ approach to all challenges has absolutely made a difference in her progress with both massage and mobility. It seems like no challenge is too great: wether it be a new or previous injury that has reared its ‘ugly head’, Nance always makes a tremendous effort in her own self-care, which has allowed her to overcome these challenges and get back to her life. A tried and true example of the power of regular self-care!”
-Katie Schroeder, AFS Massage Therapist