Sharon DeVellis: Inside Scoop


Parenting Pain: From Headaches To Stepping On Lego

How To Ease The Aches

Ways To Reduce Soreness From Being Active

I’m a pretty active person and I’m not saying it in a braggy way. It’s more of an I-need-to-be-active-or-I-will become-an-eating-potato-chips-while-on-the-couch World Champion.

By the way, that should totally be an event.

The great thing about being active is that you’re getting out and doing things. Movement is good, especially in this day and age when sitting is killing us. The bad thing about being active is that often you will find yourself feeling sore. When I first started boot camp last year I went about three months where I was sore every single day—different muscle groups—but sore nonetheless.

So I’ve become sort of an expert when it comes to alleviating the pain because the thing about being a mother is that you can’t just lie around in bed until the masseuse you ordered shows up. Mothers live in this place called 'reality.' This is why there are certain things I always keep on hand in my house:

Here are four things I do on a weekly basis that cause pain in my life. For ease of use I’ve created a pain rating scale:

1. Homework

99% of the time I LOVE delivering papers with my son. It’s a time for us to chat and joke around while getting in a bit of exercise. While delivering papers doesn’t cause me physical pain, sometimes my son just doesn’t feel like delivering them because he’d rather play. And you know what? I get that COMPLETELY because I bet all of us have times when we don’t feel like working but there are things like bills and mortgages, having to feed kids three times a day and laundry, so suck it up, buttercup. Only when I try to explain this to him when he's already in a bad mood because he wants to play but is forced to deliver papers due to having the meanest mom in the whole world it exacerbates the situation and I end up looking like this:

Like I said, 99% of the time I love delivering papers with him but that 1% leaves me with a headache. For the record, activities that also give me a headache include, but are not limited to: running and not drinking enough water, helping with homework, asking my kids to brush their teeth for the 92nd time.

  Newspaper Delivery Pain Rating Scale: Meh, It's Tolerable Pain

  How I Treat The Pain:

  • Deep Breathing
  • Wine


2. Getting Out Of Bed In The Morning

While getting out of bed in the morning shouldn’t be painful, I currently have plantar fasciitis, which is fancy doctor-talk for “heel pain.” I’m pretty sure I got it from running combined with never stretching so I want you to pay attention very closely at what I’m going to say next. Are you ready?

Stretching = Good.
Not Stretching = Bad

Plantar Fasciitis is typically at its worst first thing in the morning which means when I get out of bed and walk to the washroom I look like this:

  Plantar Fasciitis Pain Rating Scale Moderate Pain

  How I Treat The Pain:

  • Freeze a bottle of water and roll your foot on it throughout the day or alternately, use a tennis ball.
  • Stretchhhhhhhhhhes. Seriously, do it! STRETCH. I’ve found calf stretches work the best.
  • Prop foot up while binge watching Netflix.


3. The Day After Speed Skating

Speed skating is very lower body intensive. You’re supposed to skate around the rink at fast speeds in a squatting position. I have yet to master either of these essential techniques and yet my legs and butt still feel like a train wreck the day after speed skating.

  Speed Skating Pain Rating Scale: Moderate to Stepped On A Piece Of Lego Pain

  How I Treat The Pain:

Two words: Foam Roller. If you are a runner/biker/skater/skier/tennis player/or just active in any sort of way, invest in a foam roller. You will develop a love/hate relationship with your foam roller but I guarantee you're going to become addicted to rolling your muscles in a “hurts so good” way.


4. Bootcamp Pain

I do a bootcamp class three times a week. It is a combination of weights, sprints, burpees, and everything in between. It is what I like to call a vomit-worthy workout. In one particular class last year we did approximately 100 burpees and for the next three days I couldn’t bend my legs which made it very hard to do things like sit, walk, or pee.

  Bootcamp Pain Rating Scale: Stepped On A Piece Of Lego Pain

  How I Treat The Pain

  • Alternating ice/heat on my sore muscles
  • Foam roller
  • Gentle stretching

  Lastly, I’m going to leave you with these three pain-management tips:

  1. Sore is not a bad thing but intense pain is. Always listen to your body.
  2. Don’t spend a fortune on a foam roller. There are fancy-shmancy rollers out there but a basic roller can get the job done for for under $20.00
  3. Tennis balls are great for massaging hard to reach muscle areas like your upper back. They will quickly become your best friend. Invest in a pack of three.