Thursday, August 27, 2015

Resolving a disability Part 2.....

I was doing well on the no sugar-no gluten-no dairy DDPY dietary suggestions, but I was still plagued by cravings.  However, it was what I needed to begin loosing weight and gaining energy and motivation to keep on track with my DDPY workouts.  However, after reading up about high blood pressure solutions on the internet, I also became no meat- no fish- no eggs- no vegetable oil (which means also, no virgin olive oil), and this took my blood pressure down to normal within a week, just as the eating plan I found on the internet said it would.  There is a video on Netflix called "Forks Over Knives" that explains the eating plan I am currently on, and it is for life.  When I was on this plan for only a week, all my cravings left me, and I didn't miss meat, fish, dairy, eggs or oils at all.  This makes me a very happy no-oil vegan!

Now that I had all this extra energy, keeping up my workout routine was easier than before--in fact, I am very happy and motivated to do my workouts now.  In fact, I was so motivated that I added daily biking to my exercising, and after a month or so of daily long bike rides, my knee started to go bad again and I had to use my walker for two days and then the brace for some time until it calmed down.  I had overdone the biking without any rest days.  I am not 30 years old anymore!!!  I just wasn't use to having that much energy!  LOL

I had to make a decision with this new re-injury--Do I continue with the workouts?  Or, do I stop until my knee is better?  I decided to continue the workouts and modify when necessary.  After all, Arthur did the workouts on leg appliances and knee braces.  I did not want to loose momentum.  As it turned out, this was a sound decision.  I could actually gauge how well my knee was healing by how much less I had to modify the poses.  At the same time, I kept up my growing strength in the other areas while my knee was healing.  As my knee got better, my stretching routine started to reveal other areas of my knee that were not releasing well.  I knew the area at the Fibular Head had been tight, but now I found that the medial area above my knee, the ADDuctors, were also too tight.  Once I released them through stretches and deep tissue massage, then I notices that the muscles below the knee in the medial area were also now too tight.  Our muscles are joined together by fascia that create what massage therapists call an 'anatomy train'.  As we release tight areas, we often find more of the 'train' that is tight, and we need to hunt down any part of the 'train' that still is tight in order for a full recovery of that area.

On a DDPY radio show Arthur was being interviewed.  Stacey Morris asked a very good question about how to increase flexibility.  Arthur answered that he uses five-minute stretches consistently so that stubborn areas release better.  I tried this with my knee, and it works!  As a massage therapist, I know that muscles have 'memory'.  These five-minute stretches help the tight area lose its previous holding pattern and help erase that 'memory' of shortness from before.  My knee injury was an old injury from my youth as a kick-butt mountain biker, so it had quite a long 'memory' of being too short and learning to function in that dysfunctional way for so long.  The five-minute stretches may seem too long for some people, but the muscle seems to need that length of time in order to reset its length and hold it.  I find that slow progress is important with the five-minute stretch because a change in muscle length will often make a muscle and even surrounding muscles more vulnerable to injury.  So, I went about stretching by slowly increasing the length of stretch.  As a massage therapist and guitar player, my dominant side shoulder was starting to shift forward and create neck troubles.  So, I did the five-minute stretches for the anterior neck and shoulders too.  Slowly my muscle unbalances are rebalancing.  I sure am happy about all these awesome changes!

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