Friday, November 23, 2012

All this Exercise is a Pain in the Neck

...and shoulder, and back.

Therefore, I've gone back to physio.  Physical therapy.


I've been a bit off-kilter for years and all this exercising has just exacerbated the issue.  I've mostly ignored it but little things like swimming to the right, some muscle spasms during long runs, and pain when I yawned finally drove me to get help.  My last PT (and current friend) Jenna recommended one of her esteemed colleagues to work on my perplexing issue.

This lady is named Janis.  Janis is special.  She's Canadian!  But also, she's a physiotherapist AND an occupational therapist.  A PT/OT.

Not really.

The first time I met with her we went over my basic history, which included my racing experience. She tried to pinpoint when I had pain.  We discussed cycling first.


She readjusted her expectations.



We moved on to the topic of running.


Yep.

I talked about how I always swim to the right and have no clue why.  I told her of my grand plans to one day do an Olympic distance triathlon, as well as a full marathon.  And then Janis found the silver lining in our conversation:


Such a good motivator.

She started to have me do things so she could see my body mechanics in action!  At one point she asked me to do a push-up.  I got myself into a solid plank and did a nice, strong push-up.  I came out of it and looked at Janis for feedback.



Oh.  Well, okay.

As I returned for more sessions to work on my "potential", Janis began doing the usual things, like massage, and the not-so-usual things, like mobilizing my spine.


While stretching me out, we've had many discussions about my unevenness.


"Discussion" might be an exaggeration.

One day Janis had me stretch out my left side while pulling on a table leg.


This likely explains the swimming-to-the-right deal.  Anyone else's head tip to the right when you raise your left arm?  I dare you to try.

The newest stretch involves hanging me.  Wait, no, that's right.  Hanging me.


I think it's going well.

Our most recent goal has been my posture.  For starters, Janis told me to sit up straight.  So I did.



So I did.



I'm nothing if not a rule follower.




I might have walked out a little crooked, but I think I've figured out what I'm supposed to do.


Turns out the Athletic Stance was right all along!  I just need to keep finessing it.


UPCOMING POSTS: BLOGGER MEETUPS, TREADMILL RUNS

Linking up with the great writers at Yeah Write again this week!

73 comments:

  1. Hahaha love the stick figures! :) You're hilarious!

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  2. Your posts always make me smile.. Thank you. :)

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  3. Oh my! See, we have SO MUCH in common! My chiropractor literally scratched his chin and told me he had no idea what to do with me at my first visit, and confessed that he was just going to wing it as we went along to see what worked with my weird self. Love your posts, they always cheer me up and figure I am not the only weirdo out there ;)

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    1. Hahaha!! Don't you just love stumping the experts? (Not really.) I love finding other weirdos, thanks Adrian :D

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  4. Hahaha! When you said she could see so much potential, I thought you meant moneymaking potential! Like my dentist has when he sees me ... but that's another story!! Cool post, as always!

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    1. I didn't think of that Red! But I'm sure they see me coming with dollar signs flashing all around me!

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  5. I wish someone would tell me to never do a push up again lol Good luck with finessing that athletic stance :)

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    1. You never have to do a push up again ;) I'll keep working on that stance.

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  6. You're hilarious! I've never gone to a PT appt that was that entertaining :)

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  7. So, what about the push up were you doing wrong? Is it that you favor your right side? And I tried the arm head tilt thing and my head seems to stay centered, but who knows, I think I need a 3rd party to watch me be weird then explain this blog in its entirety.

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    1. You know I didn't ask her. But yeah I was probably not using my left side. I'm so glad you tried the head tilt thing :D I don't know about that 3rd party watching you; I enjoy the magic and mystery of your blog.

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  8. This had me laughing, but in all seriousness I hope you get all straitened out soon!

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    1. Thanks Christy, me too! I want to move on with my race distances already!

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  9. Classic!!! Oh and I would be a PT's nightmare- I can't even bend down to tie my shoes and I'm all out of whack! But do I stretch or try to make it better? Ummm no :)

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    1. Thank you Erika! I know, stretching sucks. I wonder what makes us hate it so much.

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  10. Haha hahaha ha. Why do PTs think everything is so simple when clearly it's not - I've never seen one of them actually demonstrate what they're asking! It sucks that you're in PT, but I hope it helps.You are full of potential, after all.

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    1. I hope it helps too! I'm definitely full of something...I like to think it's potential :)

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  11. I cracked up so hard at Puh-tawt. Your PT sounds quite entertaining. And I agree with wishing someone would tell me to never do another push-up. Push-ups blow.

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    1. Oh good! I am fond of that picture myself. My PT is pretty awesome!

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  12. Bahahha this is a great post. Janis sounds awesome. What was wrong with your push up??

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    1. Thanks Gia! She is! I really don't know what was wrong with my push-up. We moved on to other things for me to do wrong that day :P

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  13. Too bad your session was not longer so you could create a truly impressive list of No-nos. Then you could combine impress with finesse and totally rock us with Fim-Presse!

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    1. Yeah, I have about 4 things I can do with weights right now, plus running and my stretches. It was tough at first because I felt like I couldn't do *anything* but it's getting better!

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  14. What was her diagnosis? You're lopsided? Out of muscular balance? Physio-crazio? I love your drawings so much. They always make me laugh, which I probably shouldn't be doing, knowing that you're in pain. Oh, wait, do Canadians feel pain?

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    1. Thanks Alexandra! I hope you're laughing otherwise I'm not succeeding in my blogging! Her diagnosis had to do with my left lat being supertight (technical term), my left something or other not triggering, my serratus not working, and my left pec minor being superultratight (very technical term). I forget what else. And, Canadians don't feel pain; we feel...wait for it...p"eh"n :)

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  15. You are hilarious! I really hope that Janis can help you though. At least you are lucky that she said no more push ups. I hate those things!

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    1. Thanks Tasha :) Not too many people seem to like push-ups!

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  16. You're drawings as usual are hilarious. Just accept the fact that's hereditary, sorry kiddo. Groan on the p"eh"n :)

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    1. Thanks :) I bet dad liked the p"eh"n :D

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  17. I swear you could make the Dentist sound like a fun adventure! This PT/OT sounds awesome! But it's great to hear you'll hopefully work out some of the imbalances.

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    1. Well I am going to the dentist this week ;) Thanks Kurt. I sure hope so too!

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  18. I love how physical therapists - great though they are! - always make me feel completely inadequate! They always do that "strength" test on whatever part of me is hurting and then give me a low score, like "1." Aargh! Mind you, the hard work always pays off in the end... Good luck!

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    1. Of course...it's their job :D That way we also feel so much better when we get stronger!

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  19. Oh my goodness!!! That sounds so involved...but also so awesome. Sounds like your PT is awesome. I just about died of laughter BOTH times her wide-eyed face was presented ;) lol

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    1. I messed up and replied to your comment with a comment--see below. Sorry :P

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  20. It is involved. But things are slowly getting better. I'm really pretty good at getting people to look at me in amazement. It's never on purpose.

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  21. I've never done PT, either, so this was a fun post about how the other half lives for me. And you do have a crap ton of poTENtial, don't you? Hope that it helps and you find yourself more balanced soon!

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    1. Me too! It is very helpful though when you need PT!

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  22. I totally just raised my left arm to see if my head tips to the right. Glad no one walked by my office at that particular moment. This is hilarious!

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    1. I love that you tested it out! Did your head tip??

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  23. I did the same thing and my head stayed straight! Funny post. I hope the PT helps!

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    1. Haha :) Well I could just be weird of course!

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  24. So stinking funny! I wish someone would see the potential in me! Well, actually I don't because then I'd actually have to exercise!

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    1. That's a good point! No potential, no guilt about expectations to go to the gym :D

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  25. For the last two days, I can't stand up straight. Please send Janis to my house!!!

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    1. Oh man, that sucks. I'll let her know that she needs to travel the country!

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  26. We Canadians are special, alright! I remember thinking I had developed all these great muscles from kickboxing. Then I went for a massage and discovered they were knots of pain, not actual muscles. Another time I went to a podiatrist at a sports medicine clinic because of my persistent knee pain. When he did my gait assessment, he actually laughed before telling me I had the flattest feet he'd ever seen. Quack, quack. Good luck with your physio! I hope it helps more than mine did.

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    1. I know, eh? I actually laughed out loud when I got to the part about your 'muscles' being knots :P Don't you love it when your body problems cause amusement for the professionals??

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  27. Your writing and drawings go so well together! Hilarious!!

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  28. This cracked me up! Great illustrations and so fun to read!

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  29. Oh, man. I did that hanging thing once. I didn't like it one bit.

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    1. Really? I kind of like it these days :)

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  30. Such a fun post, pictures and all!

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  31. Okay, I'm laughing out loud! I love the evil look as she mobilizes your spine... and crooked walk! HA! Awesome.

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    1. Yep, I don't know if I'm walking more or less crooked these days!

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  32. Boy, that image of spine mobilization looks so painful! As always, loving your illustrations!

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    1. Thanks Angela! Yeah, that's not my favourite part of the session.

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  33. Janis' don't ever do that again face cracked. me. up! And I raised my left arm, like a thousand times and I don't think my head every tilted. Is that good or bad?

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    1. That's good! Your head shouldn't tilt--so you can swim in a straight line too then, I bet! I'm jealous.

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  34. I feel bad laughing about your discomfort, but the pictures were funny! My head doesn't tilt, but I also almost failed swimming in college, even though I went in a straight line.

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    1. You had swimming as a college course? Yikes, that would have been bad for my GPA!

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  35. I absolutely love that after the "It's pronounced Pu-tawt" with the snooty face (and I totally imagined a cartoon pinkie up) you had to write, "not really". You know, just in case.
    I love how much your posts always make me laugh.

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    1. Yup, ya never know ;) I meant to put the pinky up but I forgot. Oh well.

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  36. Haha! I love your blogging personality! Love the pictures :)

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