arthritis and re thinking exercise
January 19, 2008 Leave a comment
Its easy for me to pay a painful price of over exercising. With arthritis, bulging and deteriorating in the spinal disks, and sciatica, my physical exercise is limited. I did to much last week. Shoveling snow didn’t help
I played football all through my youth, and a year into college. Exercise meant running up stadium steps, Weightlifting, calisthenics, and foot speed drills. All these exercises are out of the question for me today. Hell walking more than a quarter mile can be too much.
A while ago, my leg went numb and i fell. my back and right side of my body was in pain. Then came the trip to the ER, then the X rays, the MRIs, then pain pills. The constant trips to the doctors that in the end were really just costing me time and money, and i was getting no where. i was in a rut.
I had a difficulty to work through over the last several years: I needed exercise to manage my health problems, but all I knew about exercise actually hampered by health.
I had always done exercise to get stronger faster, get flexible faster. Lots of of pushing and forcing to “bulk up”.
Starting with a pamphlet i picked up about arthritis management at a doctors office, I was exposed to health perspectives on exercise i hadn’t considered before. Balance exercises, toning exercises, beginners yoga .
I learned that exercise can be done without pushing, forcing, or over trying. previously i would be pushing for flexibility in a calf stretch or a hurdler stretch. Today my focus is in maintaining a position such as a hurdler stretch. Feeling my body extend and relax. remembering to breathe with a relaxed but disciplined breath. I place much more emphasis on posture and balance today, then i do getting stronger. surprisingly to me, I have gotten more durable and stronger than i was before i picked up that Arthritis pamphlet.
Today i have a a lot of commitments and responsibilities, just like everyone else. And, because i am human i do stupid things…such a shoveling too much… just like everyone else. Overall i am managing my health as best as i can and doing pretty well. i do not take pain pills today, i count my good fortune at least for now.