“If I hear one more person tell me to do the clam, I might just scream.” says my sister Barbara. Barb is an MD in Seattle and she has seen a few PTs over the years. They have all given her “the clam” to eliminate knee and back pain. She has done the clam over and over, but alas, the pain persists and it has stopped Barb in her tracks whenever she tries to run. She has another doctor friend who is hindered by Iliotibial band (ITB) pain while on the bike. He has been told to do the clam, but that’s not working for him either.
I have been thinking a lot about feet lately. Mine have felt a little cramped. I’m longing for summer sandals, or at least sockless freedom around the house. I like to cycle, ski, and hike, all activities that require closed-toe, sometimes snug, footwear. My grandmother had bunions so severe that they scared me as a child. I thought that my own genetics might make bunions and hammertoes magically appear one day. Nothing I could do about it: one day I would wake up with feet so twisted, I’d need surgery. So should I just sit around and wait for those lumpy indignities to appear?
“I can resist anything except temptation.” Oscar Wilde
“I really want to get in shape this year – that’s my New Year’s resolution.”
“Isn’t that the same resolution you had last year?”
“Yeah, but this year, I am really going to do it.”
How will you do it? Learn to use pessimism and 5 other surprising tips to increase your willpower.
Every morning at 5:30 all through the winter, when my kids were small, I jumped on my stationary bike and pedaled like mad. I rode that Tunturi so much, the odometer actually turned over. But I finally had to give it up – my sciatica was unrelenting. I ran on the weekends, until my IT band got so tight, I was hobbled. Ouch. Oh, and then a stress fracture in my ankle made it tough to do anything but swim, and how could I fit that in with the kids still asleep?
16 years later…
Starting July 3rd, I will to be out of town for 2 weeks. I am happy to say that Erin Dunham, PT, DPT will fill in for me while I am gone. Many of you know that Erin has been recovering from a serious accident. Her return to treating patients is a huge milestone in her recovery, and it is so exciting that she is finally able to come back to patient care. The patients and all of her colleagues at Alta Physical Therapy & Pilates have missed her.
On August 3, 2010 I had both of my knees replaced. I had lived with bone on bone arthritis for 20 years. My exercise program was non-existent; I was in too much pain. I was very sedentary…and gained a great deal of weight. I knew I needed to exercise but did not because of the constant, intense pain.
But that’s ancient history!
Riding my bike up Left Hand Canyon this fall, a friend asked me about the connection between osteoporosis (frail bones) and cycling. Her question encouraged me to do a little research.
I thought I was safe from osteoporosis because I’m active. I bike and hike, run and do Pilates. But still I may be at risk for osteoporosis. The facts are sobering, and not just for women! Fit middle aged men who cycle 12 hours per week are at increased risk for developing osteoporosis. Bone loss when studied in such a group was about 10% greater than for a similar group of moderately active non-cyclists. One study even showed that cyclists have lower bone density than couch potatoes. WOW.
Pilates is geared to the needs of the individual. I was reminded of this at the Ron Fletcher Pilates Conference in May. I attended a workshop presented by Sherri Betz, PT, and entitled Fletcher Pilates for Osteoporosis. I was more convinced than ever that a traditional” approach to Pilates is not for everyone. Traditional Pilates is a formulaic presentation of the Pilates work in which a series of exercises are performed in a specific order. Although this approach is helpful for a new teacher to organize their teaching, and is usually safe for someone with no physical issues, Mr. Pilates probably would not have taught this way. Joseph Pilates would have taught to the individual in front of him.