SP + PT = New ST Plan

Saturday, April 28, 2012

A few weeks ago the doctor gave me 4 weeks of physical therapy (PT) to see if we could overcome the pain I've had in my back/hip for over three years. Since I started SP, I've done better and better with exercise. I got to the point I was doing 40-90 minutes of cardio 3 days/week and 8-12 strength training exercises another 3 days (with 20-30 minutes of cardio for a warmup). But in the last few months the back pain has limited me more and more. Even walking up our beautiful mountain with DH and the dogs had become excruciatingly painful. The doctor suggested we try PT before going to more extreme, and expensive, tests and procedures. What he didn't know was exactly what I'd been praying for. Our little town has a PT facility that everyone raves about and my massage therapist had said some months ago he wished I could go to because he felt they could really help. So with my little prayer-answered script in hand I went for an evaluation and scheduled my treatments.

I've been working for 3 weeks with 3 different therapists, all having different specialties. I love them all! The difference in my body is amazing! I have never been flexible (read- I've always struggled with my weight) and even at my "peak" of Spark-generated exercising, I knew I was probably not doing the exercises in the most efficient and healthy way. A personal trainer would be helpful, but not a choice in the area where I live. Since starting PT, I have gotten a whole new "vision" of my body. I'm feeling "alignment" for the first time in my life. I headed up the mountain with DH the other morning and discovered my whole way of walking has changed! (And I thought I mastered that skill at age 1.) The therapists have given me several exercises and stretches to do at home. I've been doing those every evening and they have been effective. I've been motivated by Spark to exercise every morning. Now I have to set a new goal of giving my back some TLC every evening before bed.

On Friday I met with my main therapist for probably the final time. At her request, I took her a copy of my current Spark ST exercises. She went through each one with me, watched me do them, and suggested better ways to work. We have been focusing on my very weak lower abdominals and I realize that has been what I've been feeling was "wrong" in many of my exercises. Oh, I have benefited from all those core exercises I've done on my upper abs, but my lower back has paid the price for not having the lower abs properly engaged. Now that she has pointed out what's wrong, I feel I'll benefit much more from my exercise program in the future. I'm finally finding my center and proper alignment. This great young lady actually took the time to write on each page of my exercises the adaptations of the workout which will give me more help.

My energy level is starting to go back up as the pain decreases. Am I "cured"? No, but I am doing better. Today we hit the plant stores, I bought a lot of things, and spent a couple of hours doing up some new container gardens for the deck. A lot of bending,heavy lifting, twisting. My back is protesting and saying, exercise, stretch, and get to bed. Tomorrow is my scheduled rest day and I intend to do just that.

How does Spark figure in all this? Well, I have learned to make no excuses for not exercising, even if it's less and adapted to my needs. I've learned that I am a unique individual- we all are. I can't judge myself based on what anyone else does. I have to celebrate each little step forward I make and love myself at every step back. My third Sparkiversary is just a few weeks away and every day I am so grateful that I found this site and met so many wonderful people who've helped me every step of the way. I do believe that if the whole world joined Spark, we would live in a much better place!
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • no profile photo CD7191959
    Sorry to hear that you were having problems, but very glad you are getting relief. emoticon
    2254 days ago
  • KSIGMA1222
    You are so INSPIRING!!!! Not surprised after meeting you though, you are just a never give up type of person who tempers action with wisdom. emoticon
    2654 days ago
    i am so happy you are doing so well and found the right people to help you.
    3078 days ago
    I'm glad your therapists could help.
    3260 days ago
  • no profile photo CD5080021
    My daughter is a PTA, and I agree, they are an answer to prayer. I am very thankful that I have her in my life. She keeps an eye on me and makes sure I am doing things the right way.

    Glad you are see results.
    3349 days ago
    I am so thankful for your therapists and for the answered prayers. You are so right just because one thing works for one does not mean it will work for you. Keeping you pain free is my prayer for you so you can enjoy those beautiful mountains and get out and do what you love best in life, because you deserve it. emoticon
    3349 days ago
    I love to hear that you are doing so wonderful. I could really benefit from your plan. I recently stopped going to my back doctor just because I am so sick of all of it. I feel like the Dr.'s do nothing & I can do better myself for myself. However it sound like you really got the best help while working with your therapists.
    I'm so happy that you were able to find someone to take the time to really help.
    I know that you will really enjoy your summer now!!
    3378 days ago
    emoticon for writing this blog. I have been in a lot of pain for almost 3 weeks now. A few years ago, I tore my left rotator cuff. The tear was not large enough to constitute surgery, so I had a cortisone shot and PT. Three weeks ago, the pain started gradually and is now much worse. I cannot even lift my left arm up without excruciating pain! My Dr. has left the area and a new one has not been hired yet. I have signed up with a new Dr. but can't get in to see her until June 26th. I am afraid that this time I may have to have surgery, but after reading your blog, I have decided to hope for further PT and not get so down when the diagnosis hasn't even been made yet. Thanks for the positive re-enforcement. I needed it!!!
    3383 days ago
    I'm so glad that you are getting some relief, and figuring out how to do your exercises even better. PT can be a wonderful help for a lot of people. Blessings on you as you continue to work on strengthening and getting the help for your back that you need.

    3383 days ago
    emoticon Glad to hear it's going well.
    3384 days ago
    I'm so happy for you and the granting of your wish. Life is good!
    All of us modify our exercise, some of us are able to increase the intensity while others of us have to decrease it or do something different. The one common of all of us is that we are moving.
    Keep going and I hope that you will be pain free (or at least less pained) soon.
    3384 days ago
  • no profile photo CD5645667
    Thats absolutely awesome.. so glad all is working out well for you..Hugs Susie emoticon
    3384 days ago
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    Disclaimer: Weight loss results will vary from person to person. No individual result should be seen as a typical result of following the SparkPeople program.

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