So here we are a few weeks later with new reports on my ailing knees…
Thankfully all the news is good!! No arthritis and no new tears to the meniscus in the right knee.
Furthermore my new doctor has recommended a preventative treatment for both of my knees (they have both have meniscus repairs). Its called Synvisc-One (http://www.synviscone.com/what-is-synvisc-one.aspx) and its kind of like putting a coat of wax onto your hardwood floors but for your knees; it basically helps to lubricate and cushion the joint(s).
Since I don’t plan on slowing down anytime soon, I am thrilled at the prospect of taking a preventative measure.
I should get the injection in two or three weeks…I’ll keep you posted!!
So a few Wednesdays ago, I got a cortisone shot and my pain went away but my popliteal cyst was still large enough that is was causing pain in my knee.
I couldn’t get in to see my regular Doc at the Washington Hospital Center so I called in a favor. I have an old High school friend that is an orthopedic surgeon in Woodbridge (that was a fun drive from Bethesda!!). Anyway the practice is amazing and they drained the cyst…I literally didn’t even feel the needle go in and had immediate relief. A big thank you to NOVA Othopedic and Spine Care!! http://www.novaorthospine.com
I took it easy for a few more days after having the cyst drained and contacted another buddy of mine that introduced me to another Doctor whose office is only five minutes from my condo. I love the guys at the Washington Hospital Center but that isn’t the funnest drive either. Considering my aggro lifestyle why not establish a relationship with a Doctor thats right around the corner.
That being said yesterday I wend to see Dr. James Gilbert based upon the recommendation. Lovely office, very modern (all my paperwork was done online) and I was seen promptly. Dr. Gilbert has a great bedside manner and is all to familiar with the “aging athlete” with a hard head scenario. I have scheduled an MRI and will see him again at the end of July to review the images.
Check out Dr. Gilbert’s practice…hopefully you don’t need it but so far I like what I see!
James E. Gilbert, MD
So if any of you follow my ramblings you will know that I have had a meniscus repair on each of my knees. The left knee was insidious onset about 8 years ago and I still don’t know what caused the damage to the meniscus. My right knee I hurt while sparring about 5 years ago, and in both cases I had a popliteal cyst form. This is caused by extra synovial fluid that is produced in the knee due the “irritation” that the injury is causing and eventually a coating comes off of the tendons as the synovial fluid is being pushed to the back of knee and it is encapsulated and voila you have yourself a genuine popliteal cyst.
When my doctor operated on my left knee he removed the cyst, but chose not to with the right knee. The popliteal area of the knee is very vascular and full of nerves so if the cyst isn’t in a “safe” spot the Docs will leave it alone. That being said the cyst can fill again if there is more “irritation”. Again if you follow my blog, you know of my aggro lifestyle…I push the limit with my knees. For the past few weeks I have noticed that the cyst behind the right knee is nice and full along with some pain in the area of the medial meniscus (3-4 out 10). So I made an appointment with my pal Dr. David Johnson.
He gave me a cortisone shot and told me take it easy for five days. The cortisone is supposed to calm the irritation and allow for the production of synovial fluid to slow enough that the cyst will drain/shrink. We are at day five and the cyst is winning the battle, it doesn’t cause pain but can make my knee feel tight.
I have also been taking Aleve and just started experimenting with Blu Emu Cream (http://bit.ly/29edaac). The combination of the two has helped the pain greatly and I have been able to exercise regularly, while hitting some personal best with my back squat and front squat (315lb. and 255lb. respectively).
Tomorrow I will train legs and call back Dr. Johnson to get his thoughts and Wednesday I’ll be back at the Kung Fu school.
I’ll keep you posted…
If you have been keeping up with my blog posts, you’ll have hopefully picked your Summer Plan by now, if not quickly read the last post – http://jettllc.biz/summer-plan/
So now that you have picked your Summer Plan; what are your summer goals? What do I mean by this exactly? Let’s say you picked rock climbing, do you have a spot picked out to practice be it indoors or outdoors? Do you have a schedule and routine to keep you on track? Is there any equipment that you need to purchase? Is there a book or magazine that may help hone your skills? Are there lessons or coaching that you can take?
I’m a fan of immersing myself in my activities and learning as much about them as possible, and to practice them as much as possible to get results and achieve success. If you take this approach you certainly will move forward in your pursuits. You will also find that you have built in “mandatory” leisure time, which we all need in our desperately busy world while becoming more healthy all at the same time.
I have two goals for this Summer:
1. Bench – 225lb.
Squat – 3151b.
2. Pass another belt test at my martial arts school – www.taiyimkungfu.com
Please let me know what your goals are and if I can help you to achieve them.
It hurts, but it always hurts so I push on
My body warms and it is less
I am running and it is good
The poison departs and the goodness enters
There are trees, grass and earth
I am running fast and it is good
Their is freedom in my mind
Their is peace in my soul and being
I am running faster and it is good
I think I will always run
I just had to take a moment and talk about how much I love this shoe. I have have arthritis in my right big toe from an old martial arts injury that I incurred thirty years ago. It has significantly effected my running. I chose not to run the Cherry Blossom ten-miler this year because last year my toe hurt for months after the race.
I had all but given up running, when I decided to try out my first pair of Hokas. I recently purchased the Hoka Vanquish Two. Maximum cushioning to say the least and a rocker sole. I decided to give running one more try. My distance has only been up to five kilometers but I have had no pain at all!!
I can only guess that it is due to the maximum cushioning and the rocker sole that causes me to bend my big toe less than I would normally. Whatever it is, I am elated to be able to run pain free again. I hoping to up my mileage soon and will keep you posted.
Overall this is a super comfortable, stylish shoe and I think I have become a fan for life.
I delve into the esoteric in this blog post, but the comparison must be made for those that know and follow or participate in these equally epic sports. When I was much younger, I was a motocross racer, and in days more recent I train a few equestrians. Despite the two very different cultures, the physical activity involved in these two sports are surprisingly similar. The test of core and adductor muscles, as well as all other muscles imaginable caused me to take pause and compare the two.
In motocross you are part of the suspension – you must flex and move with all of the terrain availed, as well as with the monster machine underneath you! My clients describe equestrian riding in much the same way. Your overall fitness must be at peak levels in both pursuits due to the full body involvement required. So what is the ultimate comparison?!
I found these two articles:
I suspect if you can do one, I bet you could do the other (with practice of course). If you ride motocross bikes and can handle whoop-de-doos, then I bet you could learn to gallop and jump with a horse and vice versa. See comparison below.
Happy riding and I hope you get to experience both in your life time. I still need to tackle the equestrian angle!
I know personally I could stretch more, and need to even more so now that I have started going back to my martial arts school.
So the question is how much is enough to affect change? Studies show that stretching four times a week for thirty seconds per body part will yield flexibility improvements. it is not conclusive as to whether more that four days if helpful.
That being said my personal mission will be to shoot for four days a week. I do tend to focus more on the lower body due to the extreme flexibility needed for my martial arts pursuits. My toughest/tightest area are my hips, more specifically the lotus position/stretch. The flexibility of my legs is actually fairly good and I have no problems with high kicks, but the lotus position is the bane of my existence.
Here is the lower body stretch routine that I am currently following:
Day 1: Holding all for at least 30 seconds
Standing piriformis stretch on a raise platform – 3x each side
Lotus stretch – 3x each side
Front Split – 3x each direction
Straddle Split – 5x
Day 2: Holding all for at least 30 seconds
Standing piriformis stretch on a raise platform – 3x each side
Lotus stretch – 3x each side
Hamstring stretch on bar (I like to use the smith machine and raise the bar each time)
From this position I roll into a side kick/round house kick position – both positions 3x each side
Leg stretch machine – 5x
Here also is a link for a very thorough full body stretch routine, you may not need all listed but all body parts are covered.
Good luck stretching!!
I have been promising myself that I would go back to my martial arts school for sometime now and finally this past Saturday I made my triumphant return!! I have been going to Tai Yim Kung Fu (www.taiyimkungfu.com) off and on for the past twenty years. There are times when I have taken up to five years off, but it always seems to call me back.
The reasons I always return are that I love the training, the curriculum, the friends I have made and Sifu. Sifu means teacher/Father and he is just that. Sifu Tai Yim started the school in 1975, and just recently celebrated his 40th year anniversary. I have great respect for this man and consider him one of my mentors.
I started going in the late eighties, when I thought I could become the next Bruce Lee. At the time I was still in my teens and it was very hard for me to understand the amount of time and practice it required. I remember expressing this concern to one of my instructors and saying to her “I would give anything to become more flexible” (I could barely touch my toes at the time). She simply answered…”Just give your time”. It was so simple, yet so profound, I should also point out that this instructor was younger than I was, but obviously much wiser.
The Tai Yim Kung style is call Hung Fut. This Southern Kung Fu style it is a blend to two systems – Hung Gar (the basis of modern Karate and very hard) and Fut Gar (a soft style that emphasizes palm strikes). This unique incorporation of linear, circular, and angular techniques is powerful and explosive, yet precise, flowing, and without rigidity. Essentially it’s very martial while at the same time very esthetically pleasing.
So what brought me back this time, as if all the reasons above weren’t enough? My twin boys will be five next November and that is when they will join the school. Just as I practice what I preach when it comes to my clients, I need to do the same in this situation.
My return was fun, as it always is and I remembered more of my forms that I thought I would. I was of course very tired but very much at piece. For anyone that practices martial arts, you will understand this feeling. It is like moving mediation, and brings you to a peaceful centered state of being.
Happy to be back!!!
This is the time of year that life can get very busy, with our own health and wellness potentially falling to the wayside. Make sure to take time for yourself and stay focused.
Hopefully you have had a year of physical success to look back on, and now it’s time to evaluate, reflect and start putting together your plan for next year. If this year was good, next year can be even better.
If this year has been one that has fallen short, fear not and start putting together a plan that works for you. Don’t put your real self and ideal self to far from each other. Choose a fitness plan that works for you.
True health and wellness is lifetime journey and it is never to late to start, and always a good idea to continue.
I will leave you with two thoughts for the new year:
Don’t exercise just to look good, do it for your health and wellness. We may not all be fitness models, but we can all be healthy and live longer.
The only bad work out is the one you didn’t do!!
Train Hard!! Train Safe!!