Where do you go when you have back pain in Egypt? The Cairo-practor!
I’m Tim, a product marketing manager at an enterprise software company with an open source development model. I’ve been selected to participate in a 1 to 2 year leadership development program in the APAC region. A year passes both quickly and slowly; this show is a way to both share what I’m learning and see how far I’ve come.
This episode is all about what happens when you pay attention to the wrong things. It’s a bit different from previous episodes in that it is something my leadership development program forced me to learn about the rest of my life.
On my back without even falling
I’ve been working hard in this program, learning and growing. I have a 2 year old who is a lot of work and a lot of fun. At the same time, I haven’t really exercised in the last 2 years, instead embracing the dad bod.
I went to meet a friend for lunch and rode my skateboard. One kick push went weird and I was on my back for 3 days.
Seemingly iron triangle
I want to take care of and provide for my family. I want to develop as a person and contributor through this amazing opportunity my employer has given me. I want to live for as long as I possibly can. Obviously there are things you have to do if you want all those things to be true; fitting them in requires prioritizing.
What this made clear to me is that I have been insufficiently prioritizing “live for a long time”. I’ve been literally (figuratively) been eating garbage. Cycling is nice, relaxing, and a little too low impact the way I’ve been doing it
Whats worse is that I’ve been telling myself stories to justify it (you’re tired, you’re working hard, there is plenty of time, you’re not even in that bad shape).
The easiest way to do hard work
The lowest friction way back to something like fitness that I can see from here is doing it as part of something I already have to do. That probably means running 5k to work and back when I head into the office. It may also mean some sun salutations when the cats wake me up for breakfast.
The really important thing will be not winding up in this situation again; crisis learning is acute but probably not sustainable.
The challenge I’d set for future Tim is to recognize early warning signs; the second you tell yourself that “you’ll get around to exercise eventually” while eating an almond croissant, you’re probably a couple weeks out from being flat on your back unable to move from the pain.