Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Weight management and spinal cord injury

So I am unsure of how many people know this but I have a spinal cord injury on top of my arthritis.

So whereas before I was running 3-5 miles a day, now it i often painful for me to get up stairs or do daily chores.

Case in point: Today I managed to clean a cat box, make muffins, make dinner for Crash, and clean the tortoise cage and take the do out twice for a short 1 block sniff and p-mail trip.

After that my legs and arms were hurting so badly I had to lie down and stretch them out.

I actually made the mistake of watching the Biggest Loser Makeover tonight and it made me feel like crap watching how hard they were working out knowing that since I was in the hospital again I have not been able to get back to the gym.

The fact is there are not a lot of personal trainers (who are affordable) who work with people who have arthritis and a spinal cord injury, they are just too worried (rightfully so!) that they are going to tell you to do something and have it blow up in your face.

I do have one personal trainer who has been working with me but since I hurt my ankle we have been seriously hindered by what exercises I can do. So I had tried to make lower fat meals at home only to have Crash bring home cookies and refuse to eat whatever low fat high veggie thing I made for dinner.

So I was talking to some online crip friends (tongue in cheek) and one of them gave me a site that talks about realistic expectations with spinal cord injury, I am not going to re-write everything they said but there was a few things I think bear repeating even if you don't have a SCI

Ultimately, it is really up to you to take control of your life. With practice, you can improve your self-talk to improve your overall health.

• Be honest with yourself.

• Do not try to be perfect.

• Avoid over exaggerations.

• Do not try to predict future.

• Keep a positive attitude.

• Do not be self-critical.

• Recognize the good with the bad.

• Pat yourself on the back for a task well done.

Reducing Stress

Managing stress is an important key to maintaining healthy behaviors because your eating behaviors often change when you’re under stress. People who constantly experience symptoms of stress are often at higher risk for serious health problems including illness, addiction and depression.

No one is going to be stress free, but you can minimize the impact of stress. There are many things you can do to feel better emotionally and physically.

• Get enough sleep.

• Eat regular, healthy meals and snacks.

• Participate in regularly physical activities because your body can fight stress better when it is fit.

• Cut down or cut out use of caffeine and tobacco.

• Seek a balance of work and play.

• Hug somebody!

• Be assertive with your feelings, opinions, or beliefs instead of becoming angry, defensive, or passive.

• Be socially active with friends and family.

And on that note, I leave you.


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