My Story...

I struggled with chronic pain for years before I finally understood the wisdom of my pain and how to use that knowledge to eliminate my pain for good.

The decision that started it all 

I have always been an active person. I love the outdoors and love all different kinds of activities and sports. My love for being active took all kinds of forms such as walking, hiking, running, soccer, basketball, swimming and bike riding. I love the summer so most of my favorite activities centered around warm comfortable weather. 

However, living in Canda tends to make some of those activies impossible. So one day I decided it was high time to find outdoor winter activities so I could be active outside all year round. A few of my friends were skiiers at the time so I decided, since I had free access to equipment and friends who would take me on their journey to Blue Mountain a few times a week, this would be a great place to start.

BUT...

I was young and impressionable and let my friends convince me to go with them to the ski hill without having taken lessons.

BIG MISTAKE

My first attempt at the easy hill found me rushing straight down the hill toward a skiier who was sitting on the hill listening to music on his headphones with his snowboard sticking straight out of the snow in front of me. I panicked and yelled at him to move but he didn't hear me because of his headphones, so not being able to control my direction and escape the collision, my board clipped his and I flipped over a few times in the air before finally hitting the ground on hard my head then my tailbone.

In an instant, my legs felt numb and I couldn't move them. My head throbbed in pain. I just laid there in the snow all alone, terrified that I was paralized. No one came to help me and after what seemed like an eternity, the feeling in my legs finally started to return and being thankful that I was seemingly okay to move, I carefully made my way down the hill to the chalet for some hot chocolate and a much needed rest.

I was taking 1 step forward with treatment but 2 steps back at the gym.

The next step was physiotherapy. So I received treatment and exercise and of course they were exactly what I needed but what I didn't realize is that there was this other piece to the recovery puzzle woven into her particular type of exercises and treatment techniques that I really didn't understand fully until much later. 

You see, as an active massage therapist who worked out regularily at the gym, and even having been certified in Personal Training, I thought I knew what I needed to get better. Treatment & Exercise, right? Wrong.

The problem was, I thought I knew what the proper exercise was and I always found the physio exercises to be boring and never felt like they did anything. (I was looking for that rush I got when I worked out and repetative band workouts just didn't do it for me.)

 So I struggled to remember to do the physio exercises, never really staying on track for longer than a day or two. I committed to the treatment schedule because that always made me feel so good but I preferred to do the exercise routine I knew and loved at the gym and I made that a priority instead.

After about a year of treatment with inconsistent application of the proper exercises, I still wasn't getting better. My frustrated physio finally sat me down and said that she wouldn't keep treating me if I kept going to the gym to work out. I was shocked, confused and kinda angry, if I'm honest, at the prospect that the gym exercises I was trained in, in both massage school and personal training, was apparently wrong.  She explained to me that most basic gym exercises I had learned were not designed for my body type (I'm hypermobile) and that they were not addressing my body's needs post-injury.  

My body had significantly changed since the injury and those exercises were much to advanced for my body in this state and worse, I had been doing them for so long that I could do the exercises with out too much thought - that's a very dangerous way to exercise.  This mindless exercise routine was creating a huge disconnect between my brain and body. My brain wanted the rush that my routine gave me, convincing me that this was good for me, but my body desperately needed to learn a whole new way of functioning in order to get stronger. So everytime I went to the gym, I was essentially reinjuring myself over and over again and creating layers of compensation I wasn't aware of. This lack of awareness and desire to do it my way only pushed me farther away from recovery.

I was taking 1 step forward with treatment but 2 steps back everytime I went to the gym.

After eating some humble pie and reconsideration my plan of attack, I trusted my physio and did my best to follow her exercise routine and eliminated mine. 

And guess what happen next? That's right, I actually started getting better.

The moral of the story is, understanding how the body and brain work together is essential to recovery. Without that I would have been forever stuck in a pain loop and it's kind of scary to think what shape I'd be in without gaining that understanding.
If you've been stuck in pain for a long time and no matter what you do you never seem to get better, maybe it's time to re-evaluate your treatment process.

I’m Lana, a Registered Massage Therapist & BodyMind Coach, specializing in helping you find long-term physical health and happiness.

It starts with chosing to make your health a priority and being willing to try something new.

Let's be honest, if what you are doing was working, you wouldn't be here reading this page. 

I can help you stop the never ending cycle of pain and enjoy the healthy, active life you've always wanted.

Lana Cummings
RMT & BodyMind Coach

Trying everything under the sun and getting with no results is painfully frustrating

I'm a very proactive person. When there's a problem, I'm immediately looking for a solution. I didn't hesitate to get physio after my injury and I was eager to do what I had to do to get better. 

A couple years after my snowboarding injury I was in a car accident. I whiplashed my neck and upper back and my recovery was constantly being set back by my physical job as a massage therapist. I was having headaches, neck pain, weakness, face pain, nerve pain in my arms, hands and legs, low back pain, rib pain and chest pain.

I was also dealing with the car insurance company who didn't want to pay for my treatments because they didn't understand why I wasn't getting better, which then sent me to a lawyer, who wasn't really interested in winning my case but just wanted to go through the motions and get a quick settlement. Endless amounts of paperwork and testing, seeing phsycologists and specialists, having to relive the accident over and over and constantly having to prove that my pain actually existed was a never ending battle for the mind and body. This stress flooded my body with unseen tension that I'd later found out was keeping me locked in yet another pain cycle.

I tried everything to get better. Physiotherapy, massage therapy, exercise, yoga, chiropractic, meditation, laster therapy, hydrotherapy, reiki, energy healing, Thai massage, osteopathy, medication, homeopathy, naturopathic treatments, supplements, psycotherapy, party drugs...you name it, I probabbly tried it. Initially, I'd feel good but eventually, I'd find myself right back where I started. And the frustration that came by spending countless hours in therapy sessions and thousands of dollars on treatments that didn't work, was endless.

Never mind the deep emotional stress that comes from having doctors and specialists tell you that there is nothing wrong with you and your pain in all in your head...

I was scheduled to see a neurologist for the tingling and buzzing I was feeling in my face and neck after the accident. I sat in his office waiting to see him, eagerly hoping that he would be the one to give me answers to why I was having these strange symptoms in my face. I had just received copies of my xrays, and I'm not a radiologist my any means, but I did learn how to read xrays in school so one look at my xrays showed a neck that would make Jenga champions all around the world jealous. 

The vertebrae were all jumbled up and there were all sorts of signs of degeneration and new bone formation around multiple vertebrae. The natural spinal curve was virutally non existant and almost straight with each vertebrae shifted or rotated this way or that. It was clear to me that my neck was not right and I was convinced that there was some form of nerve damage or impingement that was causing my pain.

I go into his office, tell him my story and show him my xrays. He glances at my xrays and then sits back in his chair, folds his arms across his chest and says, "Your neck looks fine to me. The pain that you're feeling is all in your head." I was stunned. How could he say that after seeing this mangled collection of jenga blocks we were calling vertebrae? How could he not see anything was wrong or that maybe there was a correlation some how? I was ripe with anger and stormed out of his office feeling even more confused, lost and angry than I was before. 

The stressful thoughts would start me on a downward spiral that just made everything worse...

My angry thoughts toward doctors grew into resenstment and an unwillingness to accept defeat. I was pissed off that no one could help me and I was ready for fight. Let me tell you this did not help my pain one bit. 

In fact, it only made it worse. I was now starting to feel my pain intensify and ironically, I was still unaware of the profound connection between my emotional state of mind and my physical physical pain.

Over the next couple years, my pain stuck around and unfortunately, my life cicumstances created another layer of emotional stress and the belief that my pain would never go away became a constant thought in my mind.

The night time was always the worst. I'd lay awake at night, crying in pain, terrified that my pain would never go away. I'd agonize over the thought of being broken and worry about being in such pain that I couldn't work anymore. 

Then my thoughts would sink lower and lower into a deep depressive state of mind. I'd start thinking that I'd be like this forever. I wouldn't be able to work anymore and then I wouln't be able to pay my bills. And if I couldn't pay my bills I'd soon be defaulting on my mortgage and then I'd have to forclose on my house. I'd be homeless and living on the street. I'd be a failure and everything I've worked for would be gone and I might as well just die already. 

I was miserable and I felt sad, hopeless and alone.

Then one day, everything changed when I made a decision that helped me eliminate my pain - for good!

In this moment, I had a choice...

My coach stopped me mid sentence with one powerful word.

REST. 

I was stunned. I immediately stopped talking and just sat there staring at her blankly, my mind racing to try and register what she was saying. 

I was explaining to her how I was upset because I was struggling with my business and I just didn't know what to do anymore. I had been spending countless hours working at the computer and it was killing me. My neck hurt, my back hurt, I had a headache and pain in my chest. I was so busy doing "all the things" I thought I needed to do and nothing was working. I was confused, frustrated and really just needed to know what to DO next to get my business off the ground. My brain struggled to understand how rest would get me what I wanted and all I kept hearing in my head was but... but.. but... and I began to protest with excuses.

She held her ground and asked, "Lana, what might be possible if you took some time to rest?"

My Brain paused awkwardly as I contemplated this puzzling question.

Whoa. What might happen if I just took a moment to pause before I took my next step? What if I just surrendered to rest? I could feel my mind starting to connect to all the possible outcomes of rest.

Then suddenly my body started to feel lighter and I could breathe easier. 

The choice was clear in that moment. I decided to rest.

I slept for almost 24 hours straight and when I came to, my brain was clear what I needed to do next. Prioritize my health and take care of my body by finally committing to my physio exercies.

It all made so much sense. I never really made the connection between how the thougts in my head affected my actions and how those actions affected the physical pain in my body. Nor did I understand that without my health, nothing else would work in my life.

If I didn't start prioritzing my health right now, my business would continue to suffer along with my relationships, my finances, my social life and eventually all the joy in life would be gone for good. My pain would be 1000 times worse and it would be so much harder to do work I needed to do.

With a new found excitement and vigor, I committed that day to spend the first hour of  every day on doing my physio exercises so I could build up the strength in body that I needed to get on track with all the other things in my life. So I did and since then, I haven't missed a day of exercise and the results have been stellar.

If you've found yourself in this same situation and you can't quite make that decision to follow what you know you should be doing, and you have a million reasons why you can't do it, I am here for you friend.

It's my life's work to help people like you heed that sweet gentle voice that can help you take an aligned next step with ease and grace.

I would love to hear your story and see if I can be of help so please reach out to me and we'll take on our powerful minds together.

Much Love & Light,

Lana πŸ™‚

You deserve the life of your dreams.

And your dream life starts with taking action. Take the first step into your best life by booking a Discovery Call today.

Still reading?

A few more things that you might find interesting about me…

I'm a chronic pain survivor

I've struggled with chronic pain for over 16 years. It started with a snowboarding accident and snowballed into multiple whiplash injuries from car accidents to slip and falls.

 I've been through the gauntlet of injury - therapy - exercise - repeat so many times I've lost count. It wasn't until last year that I've finally learned how to shift out of pain for good and have been living pain free ever since.

Believe me when I tell you, I know what you're going through. I've felt your pain. Sometimes it feels like there's no way out of this chronic pain cycle but trust me, if I could find my way out, so can you. Just know, I'm here for you and will support you all the way to the finish line. 

I'm a nature lover through and through

I spent most of my summers living it up at my grandparents campground. The other kids and I would run around in our bathing suits all day catching frogs (now I catch frogs to save them from the lawnmower), swimming, eating Popsicle's on the dock and lounging on the beach.

We used to make secret hideouts out of pine tree branches in the woods and spend our evenings roasting marshmallows at the campfire while telling ghost stories. You could say that being in nature is in my blood. There's something so special about waking up early, getting out in the canoe and watching the sunrise over the fog covered water that makes my heart sing! 

As I'm sure you can imagine, today, you can find me living my dream life in a house on a beautiful lake filled with picturesque lily pads, swans and frogs. I'm a hop skip and a jump away from some of the most beautiful beaches in Ontario and I can't imagine living anywhere else...except maybe deeper into the forest πŸ™‚

I'm a passionate advocate for animal rights

I've always loved animals. When I was a kid, I had over 100 stuffed animals. If I had it my way, we would have had over 100 real live animals but alas....parents (eye roll)...am I right? Kidding kidding Love you mom! πŸ˜› 

I remember calling my mom up one day at work because I had just seen one of those horrible TV commercials about dogs that were suffering on the street. They were asking for money to help the Humane Society feed and care for these dogs. I was balling my eyes out and I begged her to please let me sponsor a dog at a shelter. She must have been moved by my tears because she totally caved. I sponsored (well, my mom sponsored lol) this beautiful pup named Sprout and I got a picture and everything. I was so proud to have helped this  dog get food and water and the care that he needed. It was probably one of my happiest animal memories...other than the day we got our dog, of course!

As an adult, I decided that becoming vegan was the best way I could make a difference for all the animals out there being killed for food unnecessarily. I've been a vegan now for about 10 years now. It feels good to eat completely free of guilt and knowing that I am making a difference in hundreds of animals lives a year. My hubby and I joined an animal rights march in Niagara Falls, ON, March on Marineland, a few years back too. It was so inspiring watching so many people gather together to support these beautiful creates of the sea. I look forward to living in a world one day where everyone loves animals as much as I do.

 

i'm a manifestor 

Ever since I was little I knew I was special. I mean, my mom had her tubes tied after my older sister so she wouldn't have any more kids and I here I am. What else could that possibly mean, right? πŸ˜‰

Joking aside, I truly do believe that we are all here for a reason. We all have a purpose to fulfill and are designed with very individual gifts that we can use to bring something unique into this world. As a manifestor, one of my gifts is to literally manifest what I want into existence (kind of like how I am living my dream life now and not in my 60's ;)), by simply stating what I want. I'm a do-er and what I desire comes to life one way or another. I never knew I had this gift, since, as a child, being the "good kid" meant I was always doing what I was told and I never really had an opinion about anything. As I continually learn to manifest the life of my dreams, I  discover my true manifesting gift is, inspiring people just by simply doing the things I want to do. Through the BodyMind coaching method, it's my dream to help you manifest the life you've always dreamed of, in a way that brings out the most amazing unique gifts you already have inside you!

I'm a badass - thanks to some other badass folks

I've developed a handful skills over the years. I am so privileged to have had more than my share of amazing coaches, mentors, teachers and friends who have helped guide and support me to be the badass I am (and still becoming) today. Here's a short list of my accomplishments that created the structure for me to learn from and some shout outs to the out of this world people who supported, encouraged and guided me along the way.

  • 2019 BodyMind Coach training with Badass Laura Wieck (What an absolutely life changing experience this was! So many inspiring coaches and transformational moments! Laura Wieck and her team (and a ton of other badass coaches) helped me know myself, heal myself, believe in myself, be true to myself and how to bring the gift that is me to the world. Now, it is my heart-felt mission to bring this amazing knowledge and all of the life-changing insights I've discovered to you, to support you on your journey of self-discovery.)
  • 2016 Certified Life Coach trained with Badass Life Coach Derrick Sweet (Derrick  helped me see for the first time, my unique gift as a coach and guide. As a fellow animal rights activist. he inspired me to coach in accordance with my passion and joy for the love of all living beings.) 
  • 2006 Registered Massage Therapist (CMTO) with my badass teachers Gina & Lisa (These two wonderful teachers supported me and encouraged me to be the best massage therapist I could be. One taught me how to be a badass and hold my boundaries as an RMT while the other encouraged me to treat with compassion using her kind words and genuine nature.)
  • 2006 Massage Therapy real world training with my Badass Physio Mentor/ friend/2nd mom Lilian Daymond (There's not enough space to write all the amazingness this magnificent human being has taught me. She has challenged me, taught me, supported me, coached me in everything from the human body to life in general. She's been my greatest mentor and support system for over 16 years now. The only way I can think of to thank her for the knowledge and gifts she shared with me is to share them with you. This is part of my mission as a coach, to pass on this incredible gift of knowledge and insight to you, so you can live your best life.)
  • 2000 Manager at Petsmart trained with Badass business mentor Dean Newson ( this wonderful man taught me how to manage with humility when your staff resent you for being the leader, how to be kind to people, have fun - even if you're working, the importance of self-care - even if that means taking power naps on the dog food during a break, how to be genuine no matter what and how to run a business successfully. He helped me believe in myself and taught me how to have confidence even when I don't have all the answers)
  • 1992 Athlete of the week at Erindale high school (It doesn't seem like much but this was epic for me, especially since my coach very much disliked me. It showed me I can achieve anything I want, regardless of whether or not others believe I can do it - can we say m-a-n-i-f-e-s-t-o-r?!)
  • 1988 Nicknamed Quick by my very first mentor and basketball coach, Mr. Smith ( this sweet man believed in me and started me on my journey to believing in myself. Oh and he was possibly the sweetest human being on the planet - according to me anyway πŸ™‚
  • 2007 - Business & Life Inspiration with Tracy Cummings, My sister, my mentor, my coach, my friend, my go-to. (I hit the jackpot with this beautiful person! I am so grateful to have been blessed with a sister who is always there for me no matter what. She's helped and guided me through my all of the up's and down's of my business adventures and through this sometimes turbulent merry-go-round of life. Anything I need, she's there. Anything I want, she's got a way for me to find it. Anything I want to be, she supports me with excitement and encouragement. I am not sure where I'd be without her and I can't imagine a life without her. She even helped me with this website - see, amazing right? <3)