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Shtuff...New to Me Maybe Not to You



OK...here is another thing you can learn about me. I come up with "theories" all the time. When my parents had their dementias, I would come up with ideas in ways I thought might help them out. My Dad was a stubborn German and only a couple of times I may have talked him into things. My Mom, on the other hand, was a trooper and she was ready to try anything. We often laughed because her friends would say how wonderful I was in taking care of her. Amah and I would giggle and I would say to her, If only they knew how hard I worked you!


Well, I have come up w/ some theories for myself. I wrote that I placed myself on an exercise program. I had been exercising but only on the treadmill and I did a couple of exercises w/out equipment. It happened, and I may have mentioned this before, when I was going up the stairs one day and I thought I couldn't make it all the way up. I was just exhausted. Then I realized my muscles were working and I could trust my muscles to get me up the steps.


So... First I came to the realization that I have Brain Fatigue. Its a weird feeling and I never would've thought of this before. My body may be able to work but my brain is tired. If you think about it, it makes sense. After all, the injury was to my brain and, as any other part of the body when its in the healing process, gets tired. Today, I feel this w/ a vengeance. It may be due to my driving this past weekend and, an added causal effect, because I believe the barometer has dropped and I think I am more susceptible to the changes in the weather. (Quite frankly, I feel pretty cr..py). I don't know if anyone experiences the same sensation as I do.


Secondly, after the episode of the stairs, I realize my nervous system is separate from my muscular system. You can say, DUH. But I mean I think its separated farther than I thought. Its hard to explain. I think its important to exercise my muscles and keep them toned as best I can. My dr. said our nerves grow 1/4" to 1/2" a year. I believe that exercising helps create the pathways for the nerves to grow. Since the nerves take a long time to grow and catch back up to the muscles, its important to keep the muscles toned so that they are not atrophied when the nerves grow back. Also, as I said, I think exercising encourages the nerves to grow back; they are growing back in a healthy environment. You all may say you knew this but sometimes it takes flinging a frying pan in my face before I realize what drs have probably said all along. :)


I say the nervous system and the muscular systems are separate. My theory is that I can trust my muscles to do the work I need done, despite how I feel. When I feel badly, it is because of my nerves or because of Brain Fatigue (which comes from my nerves). My hope is that when I do feel cr..py, its a good sign that my nerves are working their way back and growing.


I work on the following equipment:


treadmill--I have found that I don't have to go fast on the treadmill. Actually, I find my left leg is working harder on a slower speed. Some days, I do work on a faster speed. Also, some days, I place 3# weights on my ankles and work slowly on the treadmill for a few minutes. Also, I have started to walk on the treadmill w/ my eyes closed to help my equilibrium.


exercise ball--Right now I just sit on it when I'm watching TV. This helps my core muscles. I am hoping to work up to doing some exercises on it. When I'm sitting on the ball, I do move back and forth on the ball.


hand weights--I use 3# weights, I believe, for arm exercises. This is vanity, I don't want my triceps to sag. But hopefully, it will help get rid of the tingly sensation in my L arm and sometimes I have this sensation in my R arm.


Yoga--I have a basic book on yoga and I have done two of the easy exercises in it.


mini-stepper--I actually put this together by myself. I was pretty proud. I told my DIL she could use it whenever she wanted. I had it placed at the end of a wall so I could hold onto the wall if I needed it for balance. I talked w/ my son and told him I thought maybe I was leaning too far forward and I was trying to be cognizant of that. He took my walker and made it higher and placed it in front of my mini-stepper. It works great. Now I am standing tall and using the mini-stepper. My DIL says its hard. I like that because I am working on it longer and longer. I am hoping it will make my L leg stronger.


rower--This isn't a very sophisticated mechanism. It is a strong elasticized band w/ stirrups on one end and handles on the other. I use this in the rowing position for my core muscles and when I lie down w/ my feet in the air and pull them down to the ground. Again, hoping to strengthen my L leg.


squats??--I don't know what this is called, but I sit on my bed, which is high, or on the coffee table in my living room, which is high, and I move off the chest, w/ my legs bent at the knees and I lower my body down and up using the muscles in my calves, thighs and arms. Sometimes I do this w/ my R leg sticking out and let my L leg do the lifting, then I switch legs.


I rotate these exercises and do different ones on different days. I have turned my living room into a gym and I'm thinking of selling family membership. :)


Those are my theories and the exercises to back it up. Within a few days of doing these exercises, I felt a difference in my walking. Right now, I am in a bad period but hopefully this is a good sign and I will be stronger and better when I feel better in a few days. Take Care. LK


PS: None of this is dr. directed, so please ask your dr. or PT, etc. if you have any inkling of trying this at home. My "theories" are NOT scientifically proven :) Take Care. LK


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I admire you for taking the initive and doing all that on your own. Me, I need a kick up the butt from a personal trainer to get me to exercise! I go to a PT twice a week and we do mini circuits and a lot of weights. I also feel an improvement in my walking, I am concentrating REALLY hard not to hyper extend the L knee. I KNOW that exercise is the key to improvement, but I am essentially a lazy @@s, so hats off to you.

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Reading about all this makes me tired. :D




I have found that doing most anything different helps. Every new machine, new therapy seems to remind some system that it should be working better. Keep trying new things.


Have you tried water aerobics? A lot of people on this network have and had great results. Your body can make movements under water it cannot manage on dry land. Most park districts and Y's have classes aimed at those with arthritis. They are inexpensive (compared to what a hospital has to offer) and highly effective.

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Thanks, Lin--Yes, I have tried doing exercises in the water. I stopped because it was too cold outside (for some reason at the diving end of the pool, they kept the door open----Brrrr). I re-started but only went a couple of times because its so hard to get transportation. Also, the gym that I have signed up with locally stated they were opening their pools in September. Now, it won't be until January.


Now that I am driving (a little), I might try going back to the pool where I started.


I find the water gives you support for the exercises you do. Thanks for the reminder; I will try it again. Take Care. LK

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Well done i love my exercises i just wish i could do more and get my old healthy live style back, i just wish i hadn't abused my body when i was younger.

Keep up the good work



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