Hi, I’m Robyn Dunphy, the founder of Limberation – Limber Up to Live Life.
I am – or should I say was – an accountant and IT professional. Like many of my peers, I had been desk-bound for years and as I got older I let my activity levels drop. In 2014 I entered the Global Corporate Challenge in an effort to kick start a return to being fit and fabulous.
Although I did win all the awards available in the GCC through sheer stubbornness, that year I battled pain, lethargy, disrupted sleep and brain fog. I found myself on crutches at one point, so to get my steps count every day I swam – a lot! Ultimately diagnosed with auto-immune conditions, my fight to stay mobile and manage pain started. Hyperactive thyroid and auto-immune arthritis together with some gastrointestinal issues meant three specialists, many blood tests and even a nuclear scan or two. I’ve since added two more specialists to “Team Robyn”!
In total, my conditions are:
- rheumatoid arthritis (but maybe psoriatic arthritis, or both) (autoimmune)
- hyperactive thyroid, multi-nodular goitre, Graves disease (autoimmune)
- diverticular disease (most of us have some degree of this, by the way)
- sliding hernia
- bulging disc, lumbar spine
- herniated disc, lumber spine
- arthropathy and hypertrophy of various facet joints
- scoliosis lumber spine
- photosensitive eczema (result of medications)
- other skin stuff going on (medications again)
My rheumatologist told me to get exercise. I did better than that, I studied personal training for twelve months. Sitting is not good for me: accountants do tend to sit a fair bit! I saw this as an opportunity to learn how I could help myself and others; at the same time I could move into a career where I didn’t have to sit all day. A win-win situation!
Determining what worked for my condition and stage of condition progression has given me a unique insight into fighting back and taking control.
As a patient, I have participated in the Pain Education Program at the Barbara Walker Centre for Pain Management. This has added to my knowledge of chronic pain management.
My pain and stiffness weren’t solved overnight, but I learnt when I moved, I was virtually pain free. Finding the right condition medication was part of the equation too. That also wasn’t solved overnight.
If you have a health condition that is helped by movement and exercise, not only can I help, I understand from first hand experience how hard it can be to take those first few steps. I’ve been there. I don’t do it alone: I have a physiotherapist and do clinical Pilates as well as my own strength workouts and other fitness activities.
I will help you get your mobility back and help you find ways to reduce your pain through movement (where that is appropriate for your condition). I will always work in conjunction with your medical practitioners, specialists and allied health professionals.
I hold Certificates III and IV in Fitness. I am a member of Physical Activity Australia. There is no formal qualification for the personal experience of living with chronic conditions, but if there was, I would have earnt it.
My other qualifications are a Bachelor of Business Administration (conferred with Distinction) and I am a CPA.
I am also available for speaking engagements.