Obstacles? or Changes in Direction with RA??
Tuesday, December 13, 2011
I have some "problems" which should not be looked at as roadblocks...but merely as detours. And who knows? Sometimes some good scenery can occur on detours...or unexpected discoveries. For example:
I had thought it was impossible for me to strength train, due to hideous problems with bad joints from the disease , PA, that I have (PA is almost identical to RA, Rheumatoid Arthritis). My elbows and shoulders are all needing to be replaced ...my elbow surgery was scheduled for tomorrow...And was cancelled permanently (after three other temporary cancellations due to various health issues of mine which caused concern for the doctors. So now, it looks like I'm stuck with these joints...pain or no eradicated my ability to strength train. i couldn't pick up even a five pound weight without yelling in pain, I'm sure. But what about resistance bands??? And wouldn't they help to strengthen the joint? About this, I really am not sure...just guessing. But it would make sense that if the muscles surrounding the joint are firm and strong, it would help to hold that joint in the socket...No?? I say YES! And I'm-a gonna try it! Tomorrow I will begin that ...and I have just the right video to help me.
2-Range of Motion. Now my immediate impulse is to say "Ziltch - don' have ANY!" But really I have a tiny bit. And I"m sure that with daily practice and motion...I can develop it further. Who knows what possibilities this may open up for me?? Maybe even putting a shirt and a coat on by myself! :)
3- Stretching ...Now my first impulse, here too, is to say, "REALLY bad idea!!" But why? Stiffness is an enemy for RA and PA. It limits our motion severely. Keep us captive in a tighter and tighter box. We should certainly push our limits here and push on the boundaries until they open up wider and result in more "room" for us to move and function in. Of course it must be done with wisdom...with GREAT caution on failing or newly replaced joints...and very gently always. But should not be abandoned. I have a video of an 80+ year old ballerina...who still dances for hours every day and has made a series of videos. She is beautiful and looks a million times better than I look at age 49! Most people by that age are crippled and restricted by OA...yet she moves freely and gracefully. I'm sure that her efforts at stretching have greatly greatly aided her ease of motion.
Cardio.---Honestly , this one has had me scared. For multiple reasons. 1) asthma has once more reared its ugly head . NOTE: only after I'd gotten inactive and regained weight did it once more become problematic. If I beat it once, I'm sure I can again. I'm also very very afraid of falling. AFter all , just this morning. ...doing - LIFE - I fell twice. With brittle fragile bones and joints...falling is a scary prospect...and with RA/PA there's always a great danger that once down, I won't be able to get back up by myself. Last year, my cardio was comprised of outdoor walking and hiking on these mountainous roads and doing Walkng off the Pounds with Leslie what's'er'face. Now this year. I really don't feel so up to either one of these. So what are my options? Well, I have a brand new (to us) treadmill sitting downstairs...I want to try it (nope , have been scared to get on it :( ) and need to start slowly I'm sure. But why shouldn't I be able to walk at a slow clip on that? and 2: My ergometer. With this I need to really PEDAL at a good clip to get any cardio benefit...and for a fairly long period. The other day, I did a couple of miles...and only burned 130 calories...because I took a fairly slow and easy clip...Next time I will push it harder...and for longer.
As my friend LInda's signature says on her comments: Every time a door closes...I simply kick down a wall. Good advice. Sometimes. But it results in a heck of a lot more freedom than does sitting huddled in a corner of the room. :( which is essentially what i've been doing; letting this disease kick me around. Time to kick back.