My Path to Health Success

Chronic illness pain recovery

My chronic illness and chronic pain recovery story have been a multi-year process, and I’m often told it’s helpful to others to see how I managed it. I’ve been documenting my health progress and improvement since late 2018. On this page are the archives of those posts. I’ve included them to give you an idea of what a lengthy health recovery story looks like. There are many pearls of wisdom here for navigating the early stages of a chronic pain recovery story. These posts also show a fuller picture of what my determined mindset to never give up is like. I hope these old posts give you insights to how to personalize your health journey and to add to your fuel to always keep fighting for your best health.

I wrote about many topics over the years. There is a particular focus on my incremental exercise approach. Also, there’s a great deal of information on how I’ve made extended water fasts work in my life. Importantly, I also write about attaining my values, and what makes me happy, like when I finally was healthy enough to move out on my own again. Those are both endorphin-generating and experiences that are important for healing.

I still occasionally update my recovery story here to show what my tweaking looks like now as I continue my quest for improvement. I’ve come a long way from barely being able to stand and walk! Now the posts are about advanced topics. You’ll read about adding muscle through weightlifting, high-intensity interval training (HIIT), and using ice baths and other hormetic stressors to increase my resilience and decrease my pain. I’m not satisfied with just driving my autoimmune diseases to remission. I want to become pain-free!

These newer posts are also where I write about my experiences with new health treatments, like biotuning for chronic pain.

May my recovery story be a model for yours!

  • Photo of Christopher Blakeslee from the start of his health recovery story in 2017
  • Photo of Christopher Blakeslee from his health recovery story in 2018
  • Photo of Christopher Blakeslee from his health recovery story in 2019
  • Photo of Christopher Blakeslee from his health recovery story in 2021
  • Photo of Christopher Blakeslee from his health recovery story in 2022

Fifth Recovery Story Anniversary January 16, 2022

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Fifth Health Recovery Story Anniversary Before the Dawn Five years ago today, I had the weakest of a dying hope for a health recovery. The irony is that it was [...]

  • Photo of Christopher Blakeslee for his Health Recovery Story January 2022 Holidays Christmas
  • Photo of Christopher Blakeslee's celebratory sushi dinner at Uchi.
  • Screenshot of Christopher Blakeslee's Fastest 5k in December 2022
  • Photo of Christopher Blakeslee Bouldering for January 2022 Health Update

January 1, 2022

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January 1, 2022 I am bubbling with excitement for this December 2021 health update! It's been quite a close to the year for me, going far beyond my best expectations. Due [...]

  • Photo of Christopher Blakeslee Bouldering in November 2021
  • Photo of Christopher Blakeslee doing a dynamic lunge move while bouldering in November 2021
  • Photo of Christopher Blakeslee succeeding with a dynamic lunge move while bouldering in November 2021
  • Christopher Blakeslee's monthly resting heart rate data for November 2021

December 1, 2021

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December 1, 2021 Another month has passed, and there's more progress in my health recovery story! In this update, I'll touch on a period of increased symptoms, my physical improvement, [...]

  • nce it is clear, I take a moment to enjoy the look of it. I do the same thing when I get the whole office tidied. This can be quick. It's just a pause to acknowledge, "I value this spaciousness, and I created it for myself." It is a moment of self-awareness that reinforces both the importance of the value and the deliberate action that went into achieving it. This little act of attention strengthens the value and ensures it will motivate many desk cleanups in the future. If you were to move on without taking a pause to celebrate, you would miss a critical opportunity to reinforce your values. When you contemplate your values, you feel positive emotions and actually experience your needs being met by you. This is one of the three critical factors that strengthens a value, but it only happens with self-awareness of your own purposeful action. Ignoring this moment implies it is not such an important value after all. Ignoring the clean desk means you don't actually harvest the pleasure made possible by your action. It would be even worse if I minimized the accomplishment. Suppose I said to myself, "It's only a clear desk. That is not important. Now I need to get on to doing the work I was supposed to be doing." When you minimize an accomplishment, you are saying that even though you set a goal and took action toward it, it doesn't count. This is a prescription for turning life into a rat race, where you are always looking at the next thing you should do and never getting any pleasure from what you did do. Minimizing your accomplishments, even something as simple as clearing a desk, undercuts its value to you — and therefore reduces its power to motivate you. Which assessment is going to motivate you to clear the desk next time: a) This is something important that is easy to do and gives me pleasure. or b) This isn't important and I shouldn't pay any further attention to it. Minimizing accomplishments often morphs into criticizing them. Instead of being satisfied that the desk is clear, you start criticizing yourself for needing to clear the desk: "I shouldn't have let the desk get messy in the first place. What's wrong with me that I need a whole process of motivation to clear a desk? This is ridiculous." No. It's ridiculous to take a success and turn it into a failure. Consider: You decided to do something for a rational reason. You did it. And now you're berating yourself. That is not logical. This goes for small accomplishments and big ones. When you are tempted to criticize yourself after a success, look for a self-defeating belief like "I'm not good enough" or "I'll never get ahead" or "I never do anything right" that underlies the criticism. This kind of negativity needs to be challenged whenever it appears and re-oriented toward values. There are tools for doing this, including the self-coaching model, which is a step-by-step process for breaking down a self-defeating belief so you see it is mistaken and then identifying a corresponding value-oriented belief that will inspire you to move forward. For example, "I'm not good enough" could be translated to "I have the skills I have and I'm building more every day," which is a value-oriented way to look at current limits of your skill.
  • Christopher-Blakeslee-Bouldering-First-Toe-Hook-November-2021
  • Biosense-Meter-Recovery-Story-November-2021

November 1, 2021

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November 1, 2021 I fell far enough behind that I'm lumping September and October into one update for my health recovery story. The delay is for good reasons! I've never [...]

  • Christopher Blakeslee ADAPT Functional Health Coach September 2021 Health Update
  • Christopher-Blakeslee-Functional-Health-Coach-Chronic-Pain-Weighted-Vest-Exercise September 2021 Health Update

September 1, 2021

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September 1, 2021 Ding dong, the parasites are gone! I am thrilled to write this monthly health update! Finally, after several more weeks of struggling through the anti-parasite protocol I [...]

  • Christopher Blakeslee Month Update August 2021

August 1, 2021

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August 1, 2021 Here's my health update for July. There is much to detail. This month was quite mixed—a lot of good, followed by not feeling well for an important [...]

  • Christopher Blakeslee Month Update July 2021

July 1, 2021

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July 1, 2021 Here is my health update for June. I recovered after the parasite detox reaction and had an excellent month! I'm going to resume the anti-parasite protocol now. [...]

  • Christopher Blakeslee Beach Volleyball Month Update June 2021

June 1, 2021

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June 1, 2021 Here's my health update for May. This was the most unusual month for me in the past year. I had a couple of new milestones, little pain, [...]

  • Christopher Blakeslee Month Update May 2021

May 3, 2021

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May 3, 2021 Today, I'm committing to writing monthly-bimonthly health updates. As my health has improved and become a background issue with few obvious milestones, I rarely think to [...]