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Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Re-Posting from SparkGuy:

Hello CT Members!

I'm back to give you a sneak preview of something. Last year SP was the only write-in winner for BusinessWeek's Best of the Web Awards - thanks to our great community!

So, we're trying to do it again. There will be promotion of this to all members, but we wanted to share this with you first.

If you have a chance, would you mind visiting this page and writing in SparkPeople for this health category and saying why you think we should win?

Business Week

Thanks a bunch for your help!

Here is what I posted:


The breadth of knowledge and support available at this health and wellness site is astounding! Their name says it all: there is no better website to inspire and motivate people to improve and optimize their health and well-being.


Upcoming Hernia Surgery

Monday, August 27, 2007

I've recently found out that I have a hernia. It appears to be the result of an old gastroplasty (stomach-stapling) which I had done 15 or so years ago. Although it isn't causing any pain right now, it jumps up out of my belly whenever I do exercises to strengthen my core...so I have stopped those exercises...for now.

I will probably go ahead with the surgery within the next month but am VERY worried over the interruption in my regimen. Even one day off the treadmill causes me to struggle so to push myself onto the treadmill the next day...how am I going to manage TWO WEEKS or so off the 'mill!?!?

Any tips, ideas, commiseration greatly appreciated....!

More thoughts:

There is no question in my mind that I WILL move forward with the surgery. It will most likely be laparoscopic, however I was warned that hernia surgeries beginning laparoscopically can sometimes turn into the old fashioned slice-and-dice variety depending on what they find when they start rooting around in there.

I'm thinking that my anxieties are strong enough that there is no way...especially after making this all so PUBLIC :-) ... that I will allow myself to drop the ball as a result of the surgery.

After dropping all this weight, now wearing 48 pants for the first time in decades...there just is NO turning back for me now.

Failure truly ISN'T an option!

Update (09/06/2007):

Looks like this has been much ado for naught, at least for now.

The doctor feels that surgery will go much more smoothly and more successfully if we wait on surgery until I arrive at my goal weight...especially since my hernia isn't bothering me at this point. Of course all of this could change if my hernia begins to cause problems, in which he would be more than willing to move full steam ahead.

In any case, all my strategizing will be useful when the time arrives for surgery. I appreciate everyone's help and support!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FALCONETTE 5/31/2009 2:07PM

    Can't wait to read about your jumping back on the treadmill as I am also awaiting the end of my non exercise break because I had a minor leg surgery and couldn't exercise for two weeks.

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Requesting Help For The VERY IMMOBILE

Monday, August 27, 2007

Hello All!

I am asking for assistance, suggestions that anyone might have for a person I know who is morbidly obese with extreme osteoarthritis. She is looking to start increasing her activity level but is so VERY limited in her range of motion that I am truly stumped as to what to recommend to her. The only cardio I can think of would be water-aerobics, however funds for access to a handicapped accessible swimming pool just aren't there. So it seems like strength-building would be the place to start. However I cannot think of anything to recommend.

Any suggestions out there? All ideas, recommendations would be greatly appreciated!


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SENARA 9/14/2007 10:12AM

    Sorry I haven't peeked in sooner, but here are some suggestions.
Most of it will have to be weight training some stretching if range of motion allows.

1. There is a table top version of bike pedals and can be typically found in some of the med supply/accessory catalogs. Very usefull little machine. Can set it on a table and work out the arms, or on the floor in front of a chair and pedal like a normal bike.

2. Resistance bands. A must have. Might even get them free if one makes an appointment with a PT and gets a exercise program from them.

3. Spotted stretches. Just to bend side/side, forward/back in a seated position with someone to keep an eye that one doesn't tip out of the chair. Good for keeping the spine strong and getting a bit of a core workout.

Any good place to start though is meeting with a Physical Therapist and they will be able to develop a movement program best suited.

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SHIELDMAIDEN96 8/28/2007 8:37AM

    Here's what I had in mind:

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SHIELDMAIDEN96 8/28/2007 8:35AM

    I have heard of exercise tapes that are essentially chair aerobics; things someone like your friend can do while seated. Small hand weights and resistance bands might be helpful too. It may not seem like much but it will make a difference!

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Cutting Loose The Training Wheels

Saturday, August 25, 2007

I am a bit embarassed to admit that after all the progress I've made through using my treadmill for over 8 months...I STILL have to hold onto the handles or sidebars (what's the proper name?) while using my mill!

I feel like I'm sort of "cheating" by not doing a regular free-handed walk like I see everyone else do...it's as tho I'm hooked on the treadmill equivalent of "training wheels." Lord knows, however, I'm soaking wet at the end of my workout and getting solid cardio benefit I'm sure. I rationalize that by hanging on I'm getting some upper-body strength building...right...? :-)

I have ALWAYS been a clumsy oaf with poor coordination throughout my life. The only time I didn't feel this way was during childhood when I used to swim. As you might sense, this still bugs me today.

I have tried to let go and freely walk which I can do for brief moments of time. However my balance goes "off" and I either list to the side or fall behind and my feet start pushing off the treadmill as the belt rounds the end...which makes me fearful of falling so I grab hold once again.

Am I just making too much of this? Or is there little real benefit from walking free-handedly?

One thought I had, re: improving my balance and coordination is to take up dancing or Tai Chi, however I need to lose more weight before I can overcome my self-consciousness enough to pursue such activities. As music is so important to me and I am SO tuned into music, I have a hunch that I might someday find dancing to be quite the outlet for myself.

I'd appreciate any thoughts, tips, suggestions you all might happen to share!

Update: 8/29/2007

Okay, inspiration struck today while commiserating with a colleague. Making lemonade out of lemons!

During my upcoming hernia surgery while I cannot do the cardio to which I'm accustomed on the treadmill, hop on, but v e r y s l o w l y (1-2 mph) getting back on the treadmill HANDS-FREE. Since I can't strain myself, this might be the best way to tackle the problem.

Of course I'll check with my doc before doing anything...have already run it by a nurse colleague who suspects this may just be the ticket!

Thx all for your thoughts & suggestions!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FALCONETTE 5/31/2009 1:57PM

    I'd think that by holding on to the rails you're actually taking pressure off your knees which is a good thing bec. if you're carrying a lot of weight and are trying to jog, it's a lot for the knees to handle. So yes, there's a positive side not to mention that you are actually doing something instead of mere sitting down on a couch - everyone has to start somewhere.

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MARSHBTOKS 8/26/2007 3:12PM

    Sounds like you need to strengthen your core.....try some of the spark core exercises....It really helped me to do cardio exercise hands free when I strengthened my core.....good luck...keep doing what you are doing and build on it.........

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My Radio Station @ Slacker.com

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Check it out! Lots of great music!

Keep in mind, not EVERYTHING you listen to will have been selected by me, as Pandora does inject recommended music, given my tastes...sometimes they're right on the money...sometimes they're not!

Let me know what you think!


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