For the ancient Stoics their bodily health was something outside their control. It surprises me how helpless Marcus Aurelius and Seneca felt about their own bodies. Although they had no understanding of the causes of illness, they had athletes, soldiers and gladiators who must have known quite a lot about keeping strong and fit. Corpulent Seneca thought it might do him good being jiggled around by his slaves carrying his litter, so he ordered them to take him for a run on the beach each morning. Marcus seems to have felt not just helplessness, but disgust with his own flesh.
I’m reminded that I am not helpless; stretching exercises often ease the pain. I do some leg stretches after my shower, which relieves the pain more than I expected.