Part of me feels spoiled for thinking about how unfortunate it is that when I wash my hands and try to move my legs at a certain angle, it doesn’t feel right, because I swung too far. I am too impatient with myself. Throughout this process, I’ve tried to develop the patience of understanding that, yes, my sides hurt, sometimes within reason and sometimes unreasonably. Am I spoiled for wanting to have a pain-free day?
Four days ago, I did ten strokes without the bar on my rower, and stopped once my legs hurt. Throughout physical therapy, I went stationary biking for longer, with the secondary purpose of getting me back into rowing, with the primary purpose of reducing my lower back pain. Three days ago, I went for twenty-six strokes without the bar. I didn’t go yesterday or today because I went to PT and did other activities respectively.
Depending on how my appointment with the pain specialist goes, my new physical therapist says the next option might be seeing a rheumatologist. I’d only heard that word in passing before, someone that studies issues that can hurt various parts of the body, so maybe that’s someone who I’ll be seeing tomorrow? Since my X-ray results didn’t point toward any major issues, I’ll have to keep stretching, practicing proper posture, and working toward better health.
I had to get some coffee so I went to a local grocery store for the first time in months. The last time I went, my physicality was still in good shape. This time, I felt significantly older than I really am, but other than masks and plexiglass cashier shields, it was chaotic like old-normal. Over the past two weeks, especially, my health has declined noticeably enough to where I can’t walk at full speed.
I’ll let everyone in on the secret I learned in healthcare IT to get things moving. When you have nurses nervously telling you you’ve got to fill out this form or that in order to talk to the doctor, and you’ve got to mail that form out in the middle of a global pandemic through a series of hoops you’ve got to jump through with a bad spine, tell them that will affect patient care.
There is a pain that has lingered for days now. It is on the left side of my back, a few inches up from the opposite side of my belly button, and when the physical therapist, “Doctor-Number-Fourteen,” massaged that particular area, he saw what appeared to be a cyst. He reasoned that it was probably closer to a muscular-skeletal issue, however, it was a possible cause for the issues I’m encountering, preventing me from rowing.
While I don’t want to start off by asking something aggressive like “how’re your New Year’s Resolutions going?,” we should always continually check in with ourselves to see how we’re progressing toward our goals. In terms of fitness, I could be doing better, but I could be doing significantly worse, too, so I’d say, overall I’m optimistic. My main goal has been to burn off weight, which I’m doing. My secondary goal is rowing better…
I’m in a conundrum. My physicality has been so negatively afflicted by stress that my body cannot move in certain positions without hurting. I can’t do many of the stretches I could months ago. The physical therapy I’ve been prescribed is helping with my flexibility, which is helping, but it’s also hurting. One hour of stretches with a trained physical therapist can lead to days of immobility and pain. What to do, what to do…
How can I level up my fitness? Let’s look at how I’ve done so since I started writing about fitness over three years ago, starting with what’s helped me the most: counting calories. For the first two years, I didn’t count my calories, but I was active enough and restrictive enough of my diet to not frequently binge-eat. Now, I use a calorie counter to balance my consumption of nutrients and predict my energy levels.
I haven’t rowed in eleven days. Until today*, my lower spine has been unreliable with not reacting in pain to any major movements. I often woke up sore or hurting. Sometimes, I woke up, then went back to bed. I haven’t even been able to call up my physical therapist’s office to schedule an appointment. I believe I have twelve appointments for this new symptom, but only now am I feeling like acting on it.