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By Sue Shekut, MA, Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor, Licensed Massage Therapist, and Owner, Working Well Massage

 

Our new WWM Chair Massage station inside Whole Foods Market in Lincoln Park is almost done with the remodel!  And now our inner walls are green–just in time for St. Patrick’s day today!
Check out our latest photos of the remodel!

20180316_183634Inner Booth color is now relaxing green. We still need to install our new furniture and flooring!

 

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Once the remodel is complete, we will install our signs on the walls again.

 

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Outer walls still need to be painted. But we are open during the remodel as the work is done at night after we close. The panels above the booth really absorb excess sound and also give our clients some privacy for massage.

Thank you Whole Foods Market for the fantastic remodeling job you are doing!

By Sue Shekut, MA, Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor, Licensed Massage Therapist, and Owner, Working Well Massage

Working Well Massage has a new look and a new corporate office! WWM has been in the Whole Foods Market Lincoln Park store since it opened in it’s Kingsbury location. And WWM has been in a River North location since the early 2000’s.

In 2018 it was time for a change! Working Well Massage corporate offices have relocated to the West Loop at 1016 W Jackson Blvd. And our WWM chair massage station inside Whole Foods Market Lincoln Park is getting a completely new look, thanks to Whole Foods Market!

Stop by our booth this week and you will see we are under construction AND still open for business. Construction happens in the evening so no construction noise will interrupt your relaxing chair massage. Once the booth is finished, likely March 17, there will be floating sound dampening and privacy screens above us. And solid walls around us.

Working Well Massage extends our thanks to Rich Howley, Store Team Leader at Whole Foods Lincoln Park, and Whole Foods Market corporation for giving our team and Whole Food’s shoppers this attractive makeover!

Check out the new booth progress thus far:

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EDIT: Work continues and we see this progress on 3-11-18

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The remodel is getting closer to completion every day!

By Sue Shekut, MA, Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor, Licensed Massage Therapist, Wellness Coach, Owner, Working Well Massage

 

Give someone you love a smile, a flower, a kind word, and/or a hug today! Giving to others help make us feel good and the other person feel good. Giving a valentine’s gift or message does have to be to a romantic partner. Sharing love and close relationships has been shown to increase health and longevity, according to WebMD. The key is to feel connected to other people, to feel a sense of belonging.

On Valentine’s Day, some that are single may feel lonely and sad because they don’t have a special someone. Those that don’t have a lot of close friends may also feel a sense of loss and loneliness. One way to combat this is to reach out to others and share well wishes or kindness. This allows us to focus on the act of giving and sharing versus our own loneliness.

A friend of mine and I decided to hand out flowers to people we saw out and about one Valentine’s Day. We gave a flower to a mom pushing a stroller, to an elderly woman on a park bench, to a construction worker, to a police officer. The gifts we got in return were priceless. A shy smile and a “Thank you!” A laugh and a grin. That warm feeling in our hearts that comes from watching someone smile and feel acknowledged and seen even for one moment. We may not have changed anyone’s life that day, but in those moments, we felt connected even to perfect strangers.

Happy Valentine’s Day to all our readers! Enjoy the day and the moments of connection you feel with the others in your life.

Let us know how you connected with others today in the comments below!

By Sue Shekut, MA, Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor, Licensed Massage Therapist, Wellness Coach, Owner, Working Well Massage

Recently a friend of mine fell on ice and not only hurt his shoulder, but got whiplash in his cervical spine. Falling on ice can result in broken jaws, knees, elbows, wrists, and generally any bony area of the body.  And twisted ankles or other connective tissue injuries. So what is the best way to avoid falling on ice and damaging your bones and connective tissue?

Check out this helpful infographic from TABLET Infographics. (Also available as a poster for purchase on the TABLET Infographics website):

Walking by keeping our center of gravity on your front leg, shuffling versus taking long strides, and respecting the ice are good tips to keep yourself upright on the ice this Winter.

Other tips to avoid falling on ice include walking slowly. Sounds like an obvious solution, right? But lately, with weather in Chicago changing from 0 °F  to 45 °F in one week, it is easier to forget. We get used to walking on clear driveways and sidewalks one day and then the next the surfaces are ice.

If you tend to fall easier or have brittle bones or if you know you will be outdoors a lot, you may want to consider wearing cleats on your shoes when you go outdoors like those shown below.

Yaktrax

 

Yaktrax are steel cleats that you easier attach to the outside of your shoe. Available now on Amazon for about $19.95, Yaktrax are made of high-strength, abrasion-resistant 1.4 mm stainless-steel coils and heavy-duty rubber. According to Amazon, Yaktrax provide 360 degrees of traction on cold surfaces for all-direction stability. They are tested safe from breakage in tested safe from breakage in temperatures as low as -41 degrees F. Yaktrax are available in S, M, L, and XL sizes to fit most shoes.

 

If you want really heavy-duty steel cleats, you can also try out the Traction Cleats ice Snow Grips for about $30.00 on Amazon here.  These cleats have a main body of elastomer band made of stretchy Thermoplastic Elastomer (TPE) for flexibility and anti-abrasion as well as anti-tearing. The heavy-duty crampons have long-lasting soles which are equipped with heat-treated stainless steel cleats that bite into the slickest ice and snow.

Traction Cleats Ice Snow Grips

 They are Balance Enhanced – feature 18 spikes per foot, with 12 spikes at the forefoot and 6 spikes at the heel. Each wide heel plate with 3 spikes is for secure downhill traction and each spike is 1/2” long. The spikes are made from heat-treated stainless steel for excellent durability and corrosion resistance. The cleats provide full-sole coverage with cleats on heel and forefoot is to maintain traction through your natural stride and pursuing your passion for the outdoors. According to the Amazon listing, they are easy to put on and take off with secure and adjustable straps.

Whether you walk like a penguin, wear cleats or simply walk slowly this Winter, be safe, be healthy and thanks for reading!

 

 

 

By Sue Shekut, MA, Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor, Licensed Massage Therapist, Wellness Coach, Owner, Working Well Massage

By Sue Shekut, MA, Licensed Professional Counselor, Licensed Massage Therapist, Wellness Coach, Owner, Working Well Massage

Today we celebrate Veteran’s Day, in honor of veterans that have served our country. Yet every day, many veterans struggle with mental health issues. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is a common diagnosis for those that have experienced life threatening traumatic events and have ongoing difficulties with intrusive memories, hyper vigilance and attempts to avoid thinking about the events. Some veterans have nightmares, difficulty with anger management and feel isolated and misunderstood when y=they return home after active duty and combat situations.

The Veteran’s Administration provides physical and mental health services for veterans.  But for some, that is not enough. The good news for veterans is that there are alternative mental health services for military service people and veterans.

Give an Hour

Give an Hour is a national nonprofit organization with a large network of mental health clinicians that offer no cost mental health counseling to those that qualify. Give an Hour offers its services to all active duty service members, veterans of any era, and their loved ones. This includes parents, siblings, grandparents, unmarried partners, and others affected by a loved one’s service.

Give an Hour clinicians sign up and agree to offer one free hour a week of psychotherapy to a member of the military, active or veteran, or a family member. Veterans and family members can sign up on the Give an Hour website and select from a list of volunteer psychotherapists.

According to the Give An Hour Website, eligible clients include:

To Donate to Give an Hour, click here.

Headstrong

Headstrong is a service that is available to combat veterans that provides free psychotherapy specific to treat PTSD, usually via a type of PTSD treatment called EDMR. According to Headstrong website, Headstrong was founded in 2012 through a partnership with Weill Cornell Medicine, one of the nation’s leading mental health care centers to offer free, and confidential treatment for post-9/11 military veterans. Headstrong currently offers services in select cities in the following States: California, Colorado, Illinois (Chicago), Maryland, New York, New Jersey, Texas (Houston), Virginia,  and Washington DC.

Headstrong has developed an evidence-based, cost-free, stigma-free, confidential, and frictionless mental health treatment program for post-9/11 military veterans that works.

For combat veterans in Chicago, to sign up for free Headstrong Services, click here.

Headstrong is a registered 501c3 nonprofit organization supported primarily by donations. To donate to Headstrong, click here.

Disclaimer: As a mental health provider, I participate in both Give an Hour and Headstrong. I believe strongly in helping our nation’s military personnel and I also specialize in helping clients recover from traumatic experiences.

By Sue Shekut, MA, Licensed Professional Counselor, Licensed Massage Therapist, Wellness Coach, Owner, Working Well Massage

A few weeks ago I had the opportunity to try stand up paddleboarding. It was great fun and a wonderful workout! At the same time, it was difficult to stand up on the board. I looked to You Tube for help on the best way to get up and stay up on the board. I found this great video on how to get started from Stand Up Paddle Board TV.

I made a lot of mistakes and was happy to see this video from BluePlanetSurf about Common Beginner mistakes. Balance is difficult at first and BluePlanet Surf had this video with tips on how to balance when standing on the board. Verena Mei had great tips on this video of how to fall in and get back on the board. Best tip is fall in the water which is soft versus on the board which can hurt you!!

Stand Up paddleboarding really works your core and back muscles, not just your arms. The Active Times has this article on Why Stand Up Paddle Boarding is A Killer Workout.   Health Fitness Revolution explains the Top 10 Health Benefits of Stand Up Paddleboarding.  Benefits include reducing stress, enjoying being in nature and of course, strengthen your muscles, getting a great overall workout and having fun!

Advanced skills combining Yoga AND paddleboarding! Image from https://www.reviewgigant.com/sup-board-kopen-gids/

In Chicago, there are a few places to learn how to stand up paddleboard. First there is Chicago SUP (Stand Up Paddleboarding) with info on lessons here. For $65 you can learn how to paddleboard in 30 minutes then practice for an hour afterward with Chicago SUP boards.

Chicago Paddle Company also provides lessons but for $45 per hour. Their 1-hour lessons include

    • YOLO Board, paddle & leash
    • P.F.D. (personal flotation device)
    • On land paddle and water safety instruction
    • On water paddle instruction with a SUP safety certified instructor

You can also rent paddleboards from Chicago Paddle Company  at Kathy Osterman ‘Hollywood’ Beach in Edgewater for  $30/hour.

Paddleboarding with your pet! An advanced skill. Image from https://www.reviewgigant.com/sup-board-kopen-gids

Stand up paddle boards can be expensive ($400 and up to $2500 at REI on sale until 9-4-17) , but if you shop around you can get some deals. Some people prefer the inflatable type of paddle board so it is easier to store and travel with your board. The cheapest one I found is for $259 (Reg $399 on sale as of 8-25-17) at Walmart here.

Bestway Inflatable Paddle Board from Walmart

 

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