Thursday, December 1, 2011

Listen to your Body

Disclosure: I am the type of person who never listens to his body. When I hurt myself, I usually hurt for a while, because I continue to do the things that I did to get to that point without letting myself heal entirely.

Here's just a few quick examples:
-I hurt my tricep playing volleyball in the spring of 2010. I can still feel it when I tweak it just right a year and a half later.
-My shoulder has hurt for about 3 months now from playing volleyball. Too much. Do I let it heal? Unless playing 5 hours of volleyball per day a few times a week counts as healing...
-About 2-3 months ago, I jammed my toe playing volleyball. It hurt a lot. This constant pain, but not enough to get in the way of anything I was doing. So I kept running. I kept playing volleyball. It kept hurting a little. Turns out it was broken the whole time. (See below)

In case you can't tell yet, I am smart.

On November 6, I ran a 10K. Aside from the butt kicking I took as a result of the course, my body felt fine. My legs felt fine. November 6th was good.

November 7, not so much. My right foot started throbbing. Like, difficulty walking throbbing.
November 8, more of the same. Something is seriously wrong. I'm going to go get it checked out if i don't feel any better tomorrow.
Each day after, things got progressively better. So naturally, things were ok in my book. I played a basketball game. Fine.

I went running. Foot hurt for 3 days. Uh Oh. Time to listen.

So, for the first time in a decade, I went to a chiropractor. Aside from the "used-car salesman" vibe I got from him, I got some pretty good information. But after 2 trips, I decided to try going to someone else.

My new doctor is freaking amazing. 1. He knows his stuff. 2. He is blunt, sarcastic, and we spend our sessions joking around. Done!

Then came the x-ray consultation.

Wake up call.

Some of my vertebrae have lost the separation that is normal.
I have a bow in my spine. Both my lower back and upper back curve to one side.
My hips are misaligned. One is a little crooked and .82mm higher than the other.
And that toe injury I've had for 2-3 months was fractured. Officially.

All of those things combined, it has thrown off my neck, back, hips, knee, ankle, and foot. Hence the throbbing foot.

They both suggested 2 visits a week for 6 months to a year.

A few quotes from the chiropractor:
"This is what I call an LLC - Looks Like Crap"
"This didn't happen overnight, this is at least 10 years in the making"
"You're 26, you shouldn't look like this..."

But 2 of the best quotes I received when I went yesterday:
"This is mostly fixable"
"I need you to start running again, so I can see how your knee reacts"

So I've been listening to my body, taking it easy, and getting it checked out. And although it's not the greatest, there's plenty of optimism.

Now, it's up to me to do the little things to help my body make this turnaround:
-Work on my posture
-Wear a lighter backpack
-Ice and stretch after workouts
-Start taking yoga classes
-Wear an insole to lift my foot

So many things that lead to living a healthier life.

Ok, body... I finally hear you calling.

Sorry it took me so long to listen.


  1. R. Kelly and I are listening to our bodies (not together, of course, that'd be a terrible idea!), glad you are too.
    Your chiropractor sounds fun!

    And I'm so very pumped that you're going to yoga :)

    Take care buddy!! Miss you!

  2. Whoa! I would lecture and say "listen to your body!" but I suck at that too. So, 1) props for making the commitment. and 2) dang... getting old sucks. #idontwanttogrowup