Friday, April 7, 2023

Which Reminds Me . . .

    And speaking of hurting ourselves ...  Recently I began having knee pain. The kind of pain that can bother during the day, but keeps you awake at night. Stretching my quads helped somewhat yet myofascial release seemed to aggravate it. 

    Then I took a couple days off of the daily treadmill habit (not on purpose, just busier than normal) and the pain eased up considerably. Yet after a few more days of not walking, I quickly discovered, staying off of the treadmill wasn't working -- the pain had returned. I checked the wear on my shoes and noticed it was time to replace them. "Aha!", I thought to myself, "problem solved!". And then -- another "nope", as the hurt returned with new shoes.

    It was time to sit down with myself and think about any possible change in my daily routine that might be the culprit. I think that made me become more aware of my daily exercises and how I sit. After weeks of trying, the mystery was solved, after I FINALLY noticed that the pain decreased on a day I had missed my morning shower. It was all about an exercise I was doing in the shower--- a kind of "limbo dance" backwards stretch. I'd been overly proud of how far I was able to bend apparently. What a dope am I! But at least I hurt less. 

Love, K

Monday, April 3, 2023

My Back is Killing Me or So I Thought

    Ever since the late seventies, when I foolishly tried to move a large rolled carpet on my own from one room in our small house to another, I've had lower back issues. I eventually decided, after dealing with it for several years, that the injury had damaged my back, made it weak and there was nothing to be done about it, except for numbing the pain. 

    About ten years into this denial of mine, I heard someone I volunteered with say that she had had back issues for years until her doctor sent her to a "back class" at the local hospital. My ears and brain decided to reject that idea -- nope, not for me, I apparently informed myself.

    To add to the mix, once I reached the backside of fifty, my hips began to punish me for time spent walking on the treadmill. At least that's how it felt to me-- "why won't you let me stay fit?!". I sought and found relief with a local chiropractor and then a pain doctor who gave me hip injections. The injections were like a miracle. 

    Then the third time I visited the pain doctor, he looked at me and said that he too had been dealing with hip pain that was interfering with his jogging. He decided it was time to fix us both, but without the injections. Dr. Blake sent me to a physical therapist he'd heard good things about and planned to see himself. And that? That was the real miracle.

    After four visits with Dr. Gough five years ago, I had three exercises to continue and a tennis ball that's been my buddy ever since. The thirty daily squats are the exercise I've kept doing regularly and that I believe strengthened my gluteus minimus. The Frankenstein walk I do irregularly and the other backwards dip thingie didn't last for more than a few months. I still use the tennis ball as needed and yes --- myofascial release can be quite painful .... but it DOES give excellent relief. 

    Sometimes it takes hard work, but it's worth it. Love, K