If you are still working is there any way that you can not sit for so long? Perhaps you can stand for some calls or get up and walk around between calls or at least every half hour or so, Sitting tends to shorten your muscles and this muscle tension causes pain. If you can put a small stool or something under your feet while sitting, this will also help.
Also the 45 minutes of exercise may be too much, especially as you are pushing through the pain. Perhaps time yourself to see how long you can exercise before the pain comes,and then do less than that for a week or so and very gradually build it up. The latest neuroscience findings on pain show that the brain plays a great part in determining how much pain you feel, and that if you push through pain the threshold for pain tolerance is reduced (I'm not saying it's all in your head, just that the brain determines when something is 'dangerous' based on past experience.) When I initially had my chronic pain I could only walk for a 90 seconds on land before the pain got so bad I had to stop. On the advice of my hydrotherapist I cut walking time for to 45 seconds, did that for a week and then gradually built the time up again by increasing it by 10% a week. It took a long time but now I can walk as far as I want without pain.
Another thing you might want to try is hydrotherapy. It's much easier than exercising on land because the buoyancy of the water reduces your body weight and the resistance of the water increases muscle strength, You do need to do it with a therapist initially so they can show you what to do and make sure you don;t overdo it. You not only need to strengthen your back muscles, but also the core muscles in your abdomen, since they take much of the strain off your back. I found it to be the best thing in getting strong again.
Finally, although you seem to be bearing up extraordinarily well considering what you are going through, you are probably quite (or very) stressed, Stress causes, or worsens pain so if you could reduce stress by meditating or using another stress reduction technique, it would be helpful. An easy way of meditating is Dr. Herbert Benson's Relaxation Response. Basically you sit comfortably, close your eyes and each time you breathe out say 'one'. If thoughts come up don't get entangled with them, just say to yourself 'Oh well' and return to focusing on your breathing. Do this for ten to twenty minutes twice a day, and your stress will decrease. Also try and do something you love each day because that will also help relieve your stress.
And do everything you can to get a good nights sleep.
May I suggest that you don;t fight the pain. Pain and stress are related and fighting the pain just causes more stress. I know it is hard to accept the changes that chronic pain brings, but it may help to see it as a challenge that you can overcome with time and that it wont be for ever,
If you can afford it, and if there is a program near you, one of the best things for chronic pain is hydrotherapy. Exercising in water is easier than doing it on land because the bouyancy in water means that your body weight in water is about 10% of you body weight. Plus the resistance of the water helps to increase muscle strength. Also working with a hydrotherapist means that they will give you the right exercises to suit your condition and will make sure that you do not overdo things.
Another thing that is important is to lower your stress levels. Meditation is one of the best ways to do this, but if you don;t want to meditate, an easy form of meditation is Dr. Herbert Benson's Relaxation Response. Basically you sit comfortably, close your eyes and and each time you breathe out say 'one'. If thoughts come up don't get entangled with them, just say to yourself 'Oh well' and return to focusing on your breathing. Do this for ten to twenty minutes twice a day, and your stress will decrease. Also try and do something you love each day because that will also help relieve your stress.
There has been a lot of research into chronic pain in the last decade, but many doctors are not aware of this. There are two good on-line resources that have webinars about these new findings and how to deal with chronic pain that you can watch. They are free. I am not sure if I can put a url in a post, but if you google painbc.ca and cirpd.org and look for webinars you will find them.
Good luck. Chronic pain is a great teacher. I learned a lot from mine and from the experience of overcoming it.View Thread
I agree - water therapy really helped me. Make sure though that you start out with a therapist rather than trying it on your own. They keep you from over-doing it, cater the exercises to your needs and fitness, and can explain how to go about doing certain activities on land so you don't overdo it when at home.
Movement is critical in overcoming chronic pain. If you just sit around it gets worse as your inner and outer muscles become weak. There is a really good webinar video called 'How To Use Movement and Graded Exposure to Relieve Pain' on www.cirpd.org. Just look under webinars and keep scrolling down until you find it.View Thread