Tag Archives: alternativeptfortworth

A Dose of Medical Medium

mmThere aren’t many books that I can save have changed my life.  1)  The Bible, 2) You Are What You Eat by Gillian McKeith and 3) The Medical Medium by Anthony William.

The bible has changed my life for the obvious reasons.  In 2006 I read You Are What You Eat and this was my first exposure to clean eating, clean living, and debunked everything I thought I knew about health through portion control, calorie counting, and dairy consumption. Of note, I suffered from migraine headaches for 10 years, and as soon as I eliminated dairy from my diet they disappeared.

Since my 2006 exposure to the healthy truth, I have engrossed myself in literature regarding the use of food as medicine, and most recently read The Medical Medium.  The problem is that so much of this literature has been trendy, fashionable, misguided, and not completely the cure for me.  I’ve done low calorie via a calorie tracker (before I read You Are What You Eat), gluten free (GF) with GF products, Paleo, and vegetarian with “healthy” grains.  All have resulted in some improvement but I always felt some kind of deficit…something still missing.  The signals came in the form of heart burn, fatigue, grogginess even after sleep, afternoon crashes, brain fog, word finding problems, headaches, allergies, and viral and bacterial infections.  Right now, these are the things that define “health” for me (and yours may be different, feel free to make your own list!):

  • Good sleep
  • Vigor after a good night’s sleep
  • Mental clarity
  • A healthy weight
  • No more allergies
  • No more bacterial and viral infections
  • Positive mood and outlook on life
  • Happiness

Whilst in deep prayer (after a series of streptococcal throat infections), I begged God “Please, please, please just tell me what to eat to be healthy.” He showed me hands digging into the earth.  He impressed upon me to eat simply what he planted on the earth.  He also showed me a large pasture with one small donkey.  This told me that animals are here if needed, but to limit it.  I also got the strong urge to start juicing and meditating.

The Medical Medium has been a huge validation!  Along with my dietary struggles, I’ve often struggled with the traditional medical model.  As a Doctor of Physical Therapy, I see client after client fight a losing battle with chronic illness despite medical diligence.  If you are suffering from a chronic illness, have faith that your body can heal, and you deserve this.  Read this book.  Do not harbor anger toward practitioners because they are trying to help the best way they know how but there may be something they aren’t thinking about or missing.  Here are a couple of highlights from the book (I have paraphrased from my understanding of the content):

Chronic illness should really be called Mystery Illness because modern medicine cannot fully explain or cure it.

The body does not attack itself, it attacks invaders.  The word autoimmune is misguided, your body is fighting for you, not against you.

Viruses mutate at an extremely rapid rate and are poorly understood, leaving the medical community perplexed at best.

Thank God for medical advancements that have allowed physical repair of the body when necessary.

Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV) and heavy metal exposure/toxicity is often the root cause of all chronic illness NOT bacteria or Candida.  Bacteria and Candida are the messengers telling you something viral or metallic may be deep seeded.

It is best to avoid all dairy products, eat organic when possible, eat abundantly in the form of fruits and vegetables, some seeds/nuts/legumes may be okay (these are based on individual needs), drink celery juice in the morning on an empty stomach, and use only very clean oils like coconut oil (see the book for details).

Sugar from honey and fruit are good.  The thing that makes them difficult to digest is when they are paired with or eaten after the over consumption of meat, protein, and carbs.

Adrenal fatigue, migraines, PTSD, anxiety, depression, all abdominal/gut illness, progressive neurological decline and a host of other diseases may be effectively managed or cured with food.

Menopause should be celebrated as it is an end to aging.  With good food choices, you can celebrate!

The gut is a spiritual organ.

Call out loud upon angels including the unnamed angels.  Have faith in God and that the angels are here to help you.  They can and will come.

You can find The Medical Medium by Anthony William at www.Amazon.com!  I HIGHLY recommend it!

Love and Health,

Alternative PT Fort Worth

Advertisements

Shhh…Did You Hear That?

Shhh!  Did you hear that?!  How on earth did you miss it?  It has been resonating in your ear for a week.  You knew it all along but decided to go against it.  A fight to the finish.  In one corner is the ego, and in the other intuition.  It’s really a one sided fight because intuition is divinely guided, ever patient, and full of grace allowing ego to win if it must.

The voice of God is often felt not heard.  Spoken word is of the flesh but divine messages are of the heart.  I recently finished a quick read by Echo Bodine called A Still, Small Voice.  Echo emphasizes the power and accuracy of intuition.  As we begin to follow the small voice in our head and the impression of our heart, we will live in synch with the universe and observe how things perfectly and effortlessly fall into place.  Stress will ease and fear will subside.  Since reading this book, I have committed to honoring intuition, the voice of God, versus my ego. Let me give you one recent example from my life.

As my kids get older, my weekends get busier with sporting events, birthday parties, get-togethers, and family activities.   I also have several personal commitments and goals that I simply pile on top of these in an effort to maintain my individuality, my pre-children life, and my ego.  These things include work, exercise, girls’ nights, and hobbies.

This past weekend is a prime example of how clustered a weekend can get, and I know many of you can relate!  Friday I had to work, go to my son’s program at school, #Periscope with my sister about getting more sleep.  Saturday I signed up for a CrossFit competition, both of my children had soccer pictures followed by soccer games, I had to go to the grocery store, and my husband was on shift all day.  Sunday we had church, family photos with my husband’s side of the family an hour away, and then a birthday dinner for my mother.

In my ego I am Super Mom, and I can juggle everything; however, my intuition speaks the truth of my higher good.  Starting on Monday I began having anxiety and tension in my throat regarding the weekend knowing I was going to have to let someone down.  By Wednesday, I was still planning and strategizing.  I had Friday and Sunday figured out but Saturday was still a hot mess.  It was too much to ask anyone to take my children to soccer pictures and soccer games, so I was trying to figure out how to make it to at least part of the competition.  The tension in my throat continued to grow, I sprouted a few pimples stressing over how to juggle my children on Saturday.  Finally by Friday afternoon, I realized that I would have to miss the CrossFit competition completely.  My heart was heavy because the competition was for charity and I felt I would be a disappointment not to honor my commitment.  I finally gave in and threw my hands in the air.  My gut was telling me that I couldn’t miss the pictures or the games for the competition.

A busy Friday led to a busy Saturday morning as I rushed around feeding, bathing, and preparing for a day at the soccer fields—a single mom’s life is crazy hard! Due to my and my husband’s work schedule we are often alone in the parenting game.  The tension in my throat had eased but I continued to harbor guilt about missing the competition.  I knew I made the right decision though.  Pictures were uneventful, but I realized something special was about to happen as our coach put my daughter in a new line up for the game.  In the 3rd quarter she scored her first goal in three seasons!  My daughter has played on the same team so parents and kids alike were on their feet cheering and high-fiving.  Parents were congratulating me!  The girls on the team were so happy to see her finally get her first goal.  It was the sweetest picture to see 5 and 6 year old girls filled with such joy for their teammate.  My introverted child stifled a grin but held her head high for the rest of the game.

If I had ignored intuition and gone with my egocentric planning, I would have missed it all.  It wasn’t until after the game that I could fully understand and articulate what my body had been telling me all week.  I wasn’t meant to be at the competition, I was meant to be at the game!  Can you imagine the guilt I’d have felt if neither my husband nor I weren’t present for her first goal?!

What is destressifying?

“Live From The Sweet Spot” is absolutely my favorite radio show on Hay House Radio (http://www.hayhouseradio.com/#!/host/davidji).  Meditation guru and New York Times bestselling author Davidji is the host. He teaches very real, in the moment solutions for life’s stressors seeking to cultivate awareness and consciousness into the nuances of earthly existence.  His most recent book destressifying is a practical guide that helps incorporate enlightenment into our daily lives even in a never ceasing, constantly communicating, information overloaded culture.   My goal is to summarize a few of the techniques, and encourage you to GET THE BOOK–it may change your life!

Stress can be good, it’s what drives earth’s creations.  Stress is also our best teacher, leading us to our greatest accomplishments and higher selves.  Stress’s evils are nown all too well in our world today.  The ability to change the perception of stress from a negative event into a nurturing event is key to transforming your life.  The world is not out to get you, but it is out to guide you to your dharma (life purpose), and to cultivate our ever existing soul.  Sometimes humans need the brick over the head, or a life-halting moment to change gears, to repent, and to turn around!

Pattern Interrupts:  It is vital to pump the breaks as we begin to lose control and to prevent a loss of control.  Stress starts affecting our body by elevating the heart rate, causing us to perspire, and shifting hormone levels to adequately fuel the extremities to bounce into action.  Subsequently our brain goes into autopilot and we often react in a way that is regretful or physically harmful to ourselves.  A brief pattern interrupt can physiologically restore the body to a leveled sense of being so that rational, mindful decisions and reactions can be birthed.  The second you become aware of your body’s reaction to stress, Davidji suggests doing the following:

STOP, detach from the situation both physically and emotionally so that you can witness what is going on.  Pretend to be a fly on the wall, then react in a way that reflects the best version of yourself.

The book details examples that clarify, but for me the word “STOP” is the most important.  In the stressful moment, throw up an emotional, nonverbal stop sign.  If anyone else is involved in the situation, they do not have to be aware of what you are doing.  Stop because your reflexive reaction is not the imprint you want to leave behind.  Once the reflexive pattern has been interrupted, there is space to turn to the direction you wish to go.

PT application:  What is the biggest pattern interrupt of all time?  An injury, a traumatic event, a hospitalization–talk about a screeching halt!  As I mention in my blog Why Me Why Now at https://alternativeptfortworth.com/2016/01/19/why-me-and-why-now/, these events are ultimately wake up calls.  We ignore what our body is telling us on a daily basis continuing to grind through to accomplish something that in the end.  Do we even know what that something is?  By initiating the practice of pattern interrupts, I think we may be able to avoid and shift life’s screeching halts.

16 Seconds to Clarity:  If you listen to Hay House Radio Davidji offers a “meditation minute” between programs, and one of the techniques he uses is 16 seconds.  The best thing about 16 seconds is…it’s short.  If you are new to meditation or feel too busy for mediation, this is the perfect practice.  In our work-life culture, stress has become an accepted, mundane practice.  16 seconds offers a pattern interrupt to the stress-infused day.  It’s so easy–perform 16 seconds three times a day for two weeks, then observe as you effortlessly incorporate it out of habit in the days that follow.  The full version can be found on page 58 of destressifying.  Here is a summary:

Inhale deeply through the nostrils for 4 seconds, hold that breath in 4 seconds and witness it, exhale slowly 4 seconds (you may exhale through the nostrils or sigh through the mouth), hold the breath out 4 seconds and witness it dissipating into the universe.  If you have time quietly observe your normal breathing pattern in the following few seconds.

PT application:  16 seconds helps to detach your ego from the current situation.  In my practice many people have a brain block.  Their brain is convincing their body to be, act, and move in a certain way.  16 seconds allows the person to detach for a few seconds, clarify the situation, and then harmonize with the highest version of themselves.  An approach utilizing the higher self may impart utilizing a different spin or a different path to wellness as oppose to the beaten path, which translates to a new outcome for the situation.

The 5 Realms:  Consider five aspects of our existence according to our needs as identified by physical, material, spiritual, emotional, and relational needs.  Once you identify your blockages within each realm or within a particular realm, healing can begin.  We are our own ultimate healer and teacher.  Just by asking God reveals answers to us.  We just have to be open and receptive to that answer.  The 5 realms gives the human brain an objective playing ground.  More details can be found in Chapter 7!

PT application:  You can see that one of the five realms is physical.  My career has been birthed out of needs identified in the physical realm but that’s only 1/5th of the puzzle!  What I’ve come to realize is that a focus and consideration of the other four realms is essential.  When is comes to treating someone who is homeless, an abuser or abusee, an atheist, or someone without family or friends, a focus in the physical realm rewards little amount of healing.  By tapping into the deficits in the other realms, I can better tailor my treatment and education to guide my clients into healing the blockages present elsewhere.

The Importance of Relationships:  So many of us hold on so dearly to relationships that are tearing us to shreds.  It’s the one realm that requires the active participation of another individual.  Over and over I’ve identified and encountered people with physical burden due to these toxic relationships.  Yes, it may be your spouse, sibling, or dearest friend–that doesn’t make the relationship any less toxic.  A relational toxicity doesn’t mean that either person involved in the relationship is a horrible person, it simply denotes that the energy surrounding the relationship is not nurturing at this time to either of you.  Davidji offers four techniques to remedy a toxic relationship (Pg 145):  1)  Birth it–create a new relationship, start over brand new.  2)  Repair it–release the past and step into the future, (if this fails then) 3)  Shift it–create or dismiss boundaries to re-define the relationship (and if all else fails) 4)  End it–release the relationship for the time being.  When ending or shifting a relationship I always say that this doesn’t have to be forever, but for now.

Please visit Davidji’s website at http://www.davidji.com for more information

You can buy destressifying on Amazon.com

Butt Pain

Butt pain is not cool. I’m not talking rectum pain (go see a doctor if you have this), I’m talking pain right in the middle of your booty cheek. Can’t sit, can’t walk, can’t run, can’t get comfortable! What is the cause, and how can I fix it?

No one is immune to butt pain because we all have glutes (unless your glutes were bitten off by a shark). Pain in the butt may have a few causes including pinching by the piriformis, irritation of the sciatic nerve, lumbar disc bulge, low back derangement, SI/sacrum/coccyx dysfunction, and hip arthritis.

With butt pain we can assume that the glutes and hamstrings are tight and weak. There may be some associated quadratus lumborum tightness and weakness as well as quadriceps and IT band tightness (quads are usually pretty strong in healthy adults).  No matter the cause, there are a few simple fixes that can alleviate your symptoms:

Postural Change and Correction–My soap box of all time.  SYMMETRY.  It is SO important that we balance our posture.  Every 15-30 minutes change position, get up, stand, walk, stretch.  Movement helps to shift the pressures in the spine and joints to refresh and replenish the blood supply.  The blood carries vital nutrients and oxygen in and removes waste on the way out.

*If all you do is stand all day, lay down, roll like a ball, throw your legs over your head, hang upside down…change position!

LLD–what people in the biz call leg length discrepancy.  Most people have one leg that has little man syndrome.  Do not let the little or big guy rule your posture.  Either correct or overcome the LLD.  If your SI is always “out” (the biggest PT debate of all time is if the SI really moves at all), or if you have herniated discs, or a “bad side” it’s probably because the little guy isn’t up to par.  Correct LLD by placing an extra insert into the short leg.  If this feels too weird, then you will have to consciously balance your posture by even weight distribution and postural positioning throughout the day.

Cross Training–I marathon, CrossFit and practice yoga.  I began by running, and then my PT brain told me that I needed to strengthen to prevent an over use injury so I started CrossFit.  CrossFit improved my strength, which fueled my cardiovascular health for running but then I began feeling tight and too forward flexed so yoga came to the rescue.  Yoga is the the icing on the cake.  Yoga is the ultimate balancing machine.  No matter the sport, please practice yoga.

Yoga has taught me that prayer, meditation, and a healthy spiritual practice are vital components of the cross training circuit.  Again, it’s all about finding balance.  God made us to be multi-dimensional, multi-modal, multi-talented individuals capable of anything because we house His breath, life essence, talent and creation.

Eat Healthy— A healthy diet produces good neuronal firing and decreases inflammation.  Remember these simple tips:

  1.  You can’t over eat the produce aisle:  If you eat nothing but clean meat and produce, you WILL NOT be fat…it’s impossible.
  2. Clean meat:  Organic, free range, non-GMO.  Remember you are what you eat, so if your food is eating chemicals that can melt plastic, you are too.
  3. Plan your cheat meals:  Look ahead each week and decide when you are going to be bad.  Have a kid’s birthday party with a hot dog and Cheetos buffet in the future?  Know that you aren’t going to win any health awards at that party and plan accordingly.  I would recommend no more than 3 cheat meals in a week.  You can do a cheat day, where the day is dedicated to gluttony, but I’ve found it’s wiser to plan the cheat meals based on social obligations.
  4. Eat healthy most days of the week AND consecutively:  MOST days is four days out of the week. Try to string these together if you can so that your guts get a break.  You’ll notice less pain and swelling in the these four days because your energy will be used to effectively to fire your brain, muscles, and nerves.  Your guts get really tired and cranky kicking into high gear to digest indestructible carbohydrates and GMOs on a daily basis, so they’ll request energy from other sources (like your brain, muscles, and nerves).

The Earth Diet by Liana Werner-Gray is a great reference http://theearthdiet.com/.

Relationships–Look at your relationships and life, is there a pain in your butt? Shift it, fix it, or release it (as Davidji would say).  Remember that some relationships are toxic, get over it–try to shift it, fix it, or let it go if all else fails.  Look for a future blog featuring this approach to healing taken from Davidji’s book Destressifying.

Now to the physical therapy stuff…

Stretching–Feel free to totally “Zen” out in the following stretch poses:

Child’s pose:

Spread the knees wide, let the toes touch and bend forward putting your belly between your knees.  Hold for 3-5 breaths or up to 2 minutes.  Repeat with body shifted to the right and left.

child's

 

Quadratus Lumborum stretches:

This stretch is intense so please modify if needed.  Some are flexible enough to reach the top arm to the shin or grab the toes.  If you get a quarter of the way into the stretch and feel it, good job…that’s it for you today, stay and hold.

QL

Sit on the ground with legs spread wide.  Lean to one side reaching the opposite arm over head toward the toes.  You may use a strap around the ankle to assist.  Hold 3-5 breaths or 1-2 minutes.

twisted tree
Cross one leg over the other.  Allow the top leg to pull the bottom knee down and in.  You may be flexible enough to double cross the legs to take the stretch deeper.  Relax and breathe 3-5 breaths or 1-2 minutes.
Piriformis stretches:

Cross one leg over the other, grab the uncrossed leg behind the thigh and pull forward 3-5 breaths or up to 2 minutes

piriformis2

Glute stretch pigeon pose style. You can also come to elbows, or rest your head on the ground.  3-5 breaths or 2 minutes each side.

pigeon
Spinal twist by pulling one knee across the body, shift that same shoulder out and lower the opposite shoulder to the ground to deepen.  Hold 3-5 breaths or 2-3 minutes each side.

spinal twist

Quad stretches:

I like this pose because modifications can easily be done with depth of lean back (stay propped up on hands, come to elbows, lay on pillow, lay on ground).  I can totally relax and daydream for a while in this pose.  I like to let my head fall back as well.  Hold 2-3 minutes.

quad stretch

Rolling—  Sit on a tennis ball or foam roller and hang out.  Cross one leg over the other, find that nauseating trigger point and chill for 2 minutes.  Exhale through the pain, each exhalation should exit out of the trigger point relaxing it.  Just when it feels like it will never relax is when it does, so give it time–2 minutes of time, then move on to the next trigger point.  Don’t ignore the IT band because it’s often a culprit to be dealt with as well.

Glute roll:

foam roll glute
IT band roll:

ITB foam roll

Strengthening— Just because your butt cramps and spasms tighter than a vice grip does not mean that the muscles are strong.  In fact, the majority of the time, the gluteals are weak in cases of butt pain.  Try some of the following booty tighteners (after you stretch and roll):

Standing forward bend balancing on one leg: rep it out or hold 3-5 breaths.

single leg forward bend
Bridge pose (block optional):  rep it out or hold 3-5 breaths

bridge
Pistol  Squat (a CrossFit favorite):  To perform reps, you may need to modify depth, hold on to a stable object with one hand, or use a band.  Below parallel may or may not be obtained, and that’s OK.  You may also simply hold 3-5 breaths.

pistol

Offensive Health

My mid 20’s marked the beginning of my journey to health. I was hardly an adult but I was experiencing pain that I began to identify as something that could easily spiral to chronicity. Weekly migraines, high blood pressure, viruses, infections, allergies, depression, intolerance, fatigue, neck pain and hand pain were things I didn’t think I’d experience until my golden years. My hobby became figuring out food— a BS in Biology taught me that medicine is made out of food so I figured if I ate the right things I may be able to stay out of the local Care Now.

Health can offend. I had absolutely NO CLUE that my decision to seek health and happiness may offend so many. My now husband, then boyfriend, accompanied me to Whole Foods for my first effort in transformation. He rubbed his head as I searched for a non- dairy milk, he sighed as I picked up a bottle of spirulina, and he nearly passed out when I bought almost everything in the produce aisle to prepare my meals fo
r the week. Finally, I turned to him and jokingly said, “You’re acting like I’ve decided to do crack cocaine!” We had a hearty laugh and headed to the register. Maybe he was realizing that he would be dragged into the same eating habits if he stuck with me.

One change a week was my motto. Every week I would pick something to change: Minimize dairy and eliminate milk, eat healthy grains, eliminate processed foods, rid myself of gluten, no more “juice” that isn’t really juice, read all ingredient labels, try everything in the produce aisle, experiment with one new recipe a week, read more books, do more research, and learn about organic and non-GMO food options.

Almost 10 years later my healthy habits now include yoga, meditation, exercise, use of essential oils, and homemade/chemical free household products, juicing, and incorporating alternative therapies (which I think shouldn’t be called alternative as they are the practices of our great grandparents). Yet every change continues to offend some people. I am amazed by how many conversations I’ve had trying to convince a disbelieving audience or defend my current practice. More eyes have rolled my direction than I care to count. Things that are my “Zen” and bring me happiness, and health have truly made some people irate, and I’ve lost a few friendships over it.

The norms of the world necessitate my constant tolerance, which is not always reciprocated. The planetary demands to conform have never suited me—not because I like to be different or cool but because I am drawn like anyone else to the things that bring me health, happiness, and joy. My antidepressant is exercise, my migraine deterrent is non-dairy milk, and my allergy pills are my oils and juice. Yes, I find myself in the local urgent care every now and then but it’s WAY less than the 4-5 times a year as in my early 20’s. I’ve eradicated the need for blood pressure medicine, daily Zyrtec, Flonase, Excedrine Migraine, and Celexa (an antidepressant)—yes, I was taking all of these at the ripe age of 22.

I’m sharing all of this so that you don’t feel alone if your efforts to heal and be healthy are not supported by your friends, family, coworkers, or spouse. It is my hobby, it brings me joy, and I don’t try to control anyone else’s hobby—maybe this will help it be accepted or at least tolerated. I’m extremely proud of all of the things I’ve taught myself through the wisdom of the health and alternative community (thank you Hay House radio, and the countless authors in the self-help and health/nutrition section of Half Price Books and Amazon).

XL hugs and kisses!

On The Radio! The Earth Diet

Wednesday evenings on the way home from work I often tune in to The Earth Diet radio show on Hay House radio.  I don’t have the book yet, but basically, Liana (the author and host) encourages a clean, vegan diet to revitalize, recharge, and restore health.  The goal is to thrive in the body you’ve been given.  She offers several healthy, whole, alternatives to kick cravings in the butt.  Her personal struggle and dietary transformation fuel the questions and discussion.

Finally, I did it.  I hit the “call in now” button…I actually did it, and I actually got through!  I couldn’t believe it!  People who know me can attest to my stage fright, so my heart was racing and clogging my throat.  The feeling of being in the presence of a pop star filled my stomach.  I had a simple question:  How can I eat clean, and in enough quantity to fuel my long marathon training runs and my heavy Crossfit workouts?

I love the feeling after a nice, dietary cleanse.  Eating healthy is so revitalizing…but then I’ve got to get back to the gym.  Exercise is my passion.  It’s my anti-depressant, anti-anxiety, my hobby, and my energetic release.  It’s created physical strength in my workday and motherly activities and cultivated discipline and respect.  I love it–BUT–a vegan diet doesn’t seem to cut it in the fuel department.  I know vegan athletes exist so I must be missing something!  After a few days of clean eating I feel as if I am running with cement shoes, my stomach is growling in the middle of a run, and I can’t lift a heavy barbell to save my life.

Liana Werner-Gray, author of The Earth Diet book, came to the rescue and gave me some wonderful tips.

  1.  Chia seed cereal (recipe below)–double the serving size it and take it to go.  I’ve been eating chia seed cereal, which has helped energetically in the beginning of the workout but it digests quickly, leaving me hungry by mile 7…simple fix…double the recipe AND take some to go for longer workouts.
  2. Nutiva protein powder–this is plant based as opposed to grain based, which may settle and fill the stomach and ease digestion.
  3. Fresh vegetable juice–vegetable juice power packs your system with nutrients so the cells aren’t bogged down, sluggishly looking for a fuel source.
  4. Hemp seeds–recent studies show hemp seeds may have more protein than meat!  How exciting!  Eat spoonfuls post workout or put them on just about anything for a nice, nutty flavor.  Three tablespoons has 10g of protein!
  5. Quinoa–this is a nice, clean, digestible fuel source, maybe the night or afternoon before a long run.  (My Paleo brain made me forget about this great source of plant-based protein)
  6. Brown rice pasta–also an easy to digest, clean fuel source the night before or afternoon after endurance training.  (Again, paleo brain made me forget this as a source during marathon training)
  7. Tiger nuts–I’m in love already.  They are so filling and delicious but take quite a bit of chewing to get down.  She suggested soaking them in water or placing them on top of the chia seed cereal to aide in availability during or after a long workout.
  8. Eat clean meat only–organic, grass-fed, free range is the key.  If the animals are stressed and eating crap, you will be stressed and eating crap.
  9. Vitacost!  Vitacost.com is a great website with discounted prices on clean food items.  Many of the prices I have found are cheaper and cleaner than Amazon, Sprouts, Central Market, and Trader Joe’s.  Liana told me to use coupon code earthdiet to get 10% off!

Chia Seed Cereal:  I put two tablespoons of Chia seeds into a bowl and put in about 1/2 cup to 1 cup almond milk.  I soak them overnight and add cinnamon and honey in the morning, mix up, and eat.  The thickness can be adjusted by changing the seed/milk ratio to your liking.  I make home made, chocolate almond milk to jazz mine up.

Almond Milk:  1 cup almonds soaked overnight in water.  Pour almonds into high speed blender with 4 cups water.  Add 1-2 dates (or none), a bunch of raw honey, sea salt, cocao powder (or none), vanilla extract, and nutmeg.  Mix on highest setting for 2 minutes.  Pour through nut bag or cheese cloth and enjoy!

 

A New York Minute with Plantar Fasciitis

Nothing is more grounding than New York City.  Manhattan’s streets cannot be stifled even in the face of an epic blizzard. My first-hand experience during the girl’s trip of a lifetime allowed me to connect to my root in a way I could have never imagined. Every present, in the moment, minute matters in New York. Here and now…right now!  While it took me a few days to wipe the smile off of my face, and to quit excusing myself in public, I did finally fall into order. By day three, a bump on the subway awarded no human interaction or acknowledgment. I am a day dreamer, and can easily be whisked away in a bundle of lost moments. In the city that never sleeps, I noticed the inability to escape and found myself hypervigilant on the task at hand, the present minute—my safety, my whereabouts, my next stop and destination, the puddle on the ground, the color of the traffic light, the accessibility of my wallet and phone, my swift order at the counter, and the nearest Starbucks for a refuel. The days concluded with a crash into deep sleep and colorful dreams.

My deficit root chakra has left me with an absence of grounding for months, years, and possibly a lifetime. At first I hated that so many people were living so connected to the here and now, this exact minute and nothing else. The realization that it is a necessary requirement for higher cultivation surprised me. Living to appreciate and to be present in every moment is something every self-help author writes about…so maybe New York is on to something. Also, where would the world be without people connected to making it run every minute of every day? Without this necessary task to reveal our best future, we’d all be fighting for survival as oppose to day dreaming about our next get-away vacation. My misconception was that everyone’s dream job entails waking up naturally, donning yoga pants, meditating, and sharing wisdom with chosen clients or friends. The hustling business world is a dream job to many, and thank God! Just like everyone else, they must find balance, which may necessitate some time spent in elevation but I obviously lack balance in time spent grounded, preparing for the next, best moment ever.

During the trip, I had the pleasure of sharing treatment ideas for plantar fasciitis (shouldn’t be a shocker immersed in New York’s ambulatory culture). So below is the information now gifted to you! Lucky you.
Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar Fasciitis produces pain on the bottom of the foot, usually on the inside arch or the heel. Typically, pain is worse upon rising and with prolonged walking. Heel wearing individuals and runners are the target population to suffer from this problem; however, everyone’s got a Vegas’ chance of suffering from this condition. What can you do?

Shoe wear—depends on specific foot type but if I stereotype the typical sufferer a more rigid sole that rocks slightly is most beneficial versus a shoe with a small heel or wedge. Guys, think cowboy boots or dress shoes. Runners, the shoe should rock slightly when sitting flat on the ground. When buying shoes bend and twist them—the shoe that moves the least and rocks slightly is best.
Inserts—again, insert type varies by foot type. A custom orthotic from a prosthetist/orthotist may be the answer; however, a semi-rigid store bought orthotic may fit the bill as well (this is what works for me). Slowly incorporate the inserts by wearing them little by little until you can tolerate them all day. It is extremely normal to have some leg, hip or back pain because the inserts are changing your body mechanics. This should resolve in a few weeks and leave you with less pain all over.
Stretching—stretch the gastroc and soleus as shown in my previous plantar fasciitis blog at https://alternativeptfortworth.com/2015/05/04/pain-in-the-foot-plantar-fasciitis/.
Night Splints—these are a great solution for chronic heel wearers and sufferers, or those that get no relief from any of the above. Simply wear them at night for an eight hour plantar fascia stretch. Find them on amazon.com and refer to my plantar fascia blog at https://alternativeptfortworth.com/2015/05/04/pain-in-the-foot-plantar-fasciitis/ for more information.
Leg dominance—switch up the leg load when resting in a standing posture. Pop your hip out to the left instead of the right or vice versa.
Leg length—if you sense one leg is longer than the other, it probably is. It’s a super common occurrence. The fix? Throw an extra Dr. Scholl’s insert into the short leg’s shoe, simple as that.
Taping—watch the following video for an effective taping technique that I use called navicular sling taping as shown at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UhvESzvHliE . There are about a million other taping videos out there so feel free to use the one that brings you the most relief. When treating a patient, I may blend or modify a few techniques. I suggest Leukotape or Rocktape (amazon.com) as it is more rigid for an all-day wear. If all day wear turns into all month wear, consider custom inserts made by an orthotist.
Tension release—MEDITATE, practice quiet stillness, breath practice, spend time with God, exhale through your muscles letting energy flow out. Peppermint oil and sea salt soaks can help too. Destressify as Davidji would say!

Why Me and Why Now?!

SERIOUSLY!…no, REALLY? This cannot be happening right now…I am way too busy to deal with an injury. I can hardly take care of my family much less find time to take care of myself…and this pain. How am I going to fix this? Ever wonder why a physical injury is manifested at the worst possible time? Clarity is on the way! While listening to Hay House radio one day, I heard a snippet from a lecture given by a medical doctor turned spiritual teacher. She tells a story about discharging patients from the hospital. The night before their discharge, she would ask them to answer a few questions–something similar to the following: 1) Why do you think this happened now? 2) What was happening in your life to cause this? 3) Why do you think your (heart, ankle, foot, lung, etc…) was affected? Upon follow up the next day, she reports that every patient understood why the disease/injury occurred and what caused it. As a physical therapist, I can teach you all of the exercises, stretches, and techniques you need to recover from an injury, but the true cure and preventative strategy may be to fully understand what in your life caused the manifestation. Was it the wakeup call you needed or the factor that changed your life forever? Did it simply slow you down for a while to teach gratitude, appreciation, or grace? It may have even saved your life in the long run but the realization of the reason is likely for you to come to find. If you keep tearing ligaments or muscles, maybe you need to detach yourself from a situation. If you’ve broken more bones than you can count, maybe there’s emotional brokenness that needs attention. For constant migraines or tension, is there something you’re trying to shut out of your life or are you resisting facing a situation or accepting your life purpose? For TMJ, should you practice silence? If you were victimized in some way maybe you need to step out of that role and take charge of your life, honor yourself, find self-love. Chronic pain is the embodiment of answered prayers. God…why?! He’s trying to tell you. Start thinking about what may lay beyond the physical manifestation, what is broken spiritually, socially, or emotionally? Sometimes the cure isn’t complete alleviation but acceptance, acknowledgement and a new perspective.

The Kicker–
Literally hours after I finished this blog post, I got the phone call….the mysterious “why is my husband calling me at work” call. He was on his way to the children’s hospital with my son. Thank God it was nothing life-threatening but a clavicle fracture that should heal on its own. Why me, why now? As I stared at my angel sitting as a tiny boy on a huge cot in triage, I wrestled with why God used this to get my attention. Maybe he needs some extra cuddling from mommy and daddy, maybe it’s a lesson to our daughter not to push him (she gets in trouble constantly for bullying and pushing him—ya’ know, big sis problems), maybe he needs to learn how to take up for himself. Either way, it made me reflect not only on his physical needs but his social, spiritual, and emotional needs. It also made me thank God for…well, everything.

Hidden Messages

PandGI recently read a book by Dr. Wayne Dyer titled Memories of Heaven. It’s a collection of short stories told by parents about their children’s fascinating stories and proclamations of being with God in heaven before birth. As I read the book, a few of my own children’s stories were validated. I had no idea so many other parents have experienced the same thing. Here’s one of my stories.

Before my daughter’s birth, or even the thought of her birth, back in the My Space days (for me 2005-2007) I blogged about a bizarre but comforting phrase that popped into my head every morning and frequently throughout the day. The thought was a little voice that said “I love you.” In the beginning I thought it was so weird that myself was telling myself “I love you”…almost every day. “How selfish” I thought, but as it continued I accepted that maybe it was God or my grandmother telling me “I love you.” This made it feel more normal. I continued to be perplexed at how and why…even when I thought I’d forget for one day…there it was “I love you.”

About 2 years after it began it disappeared, and I didn’t even realize it–until my daughter started talking. The first time she told me “I love you mommy,” brought tears to my eyes and made life so totally worth it! From that day on she tells me multiple times a day and at random “I love you.” She’ll pause her favorite show on YouTube and yell “MOMMY!” I’ll come running in thinking there’s a minor emergency, and she’ll politely say “I love you.” Today I dropped her off at her class, she got half way through the door, ran back out in a hurry, tugged on my sleeve, and whispered in my ear “I love you,” then happily ran into her classroom.

Her consistency made me remember the little voice that paraded through my mind continuously for two years “I love you.” I can consciously think “I love you,” but it’s not the voice…it’s not the same. I can’t help but think it was her the whole time. God proves to us what is real in the unseen, we just don’t take the initiative to realize it…silly, left brained humans we are!

Her diligent nature also encourages me to love myself. She’s so deep in her five years of wisdom! Loving yourself is hard…really hard…I’m still figuring it out—trying to erode years of low self-esteem and unworthiness—it’s getting easier and more clear so that’s good.

Pay attention to those little “downloads” you receive either in an odd thought, or in a repeating phrase that may come through friends, billboards, coworkers, kids, and spouses—it may be the voice of something divine trying to get your attention.

The Switch Up

After 25, let’s face it, things start going downhill a little. Not technically downhill, just status quo. What I mean is that up to the age of 25 or 26, our bodies are rapidly developing, changing, growing (our brain), repairing, and regenerating—We. Are. Invincible!   Our first excuse is our 30th birthday…”as soon as I turned 30, my back started hurting,” and every decade after our excuse becomes more unarguable.

Once we begin to perceive pain, there’s a switch up. Some people are highly motivated to find the culprit, fix, and eliminate it, while others hold fast to the belief that it’ll just go away or that it’s a fundamental part of aging—a slow decline with increased pain (deal with it).   At this point, we have simply discovered that we are in fact destructible; however…and here’s the kicker…we can prevent decline and move into a state of maintenance. It’s not about living to die, it’s about thriving while alive.

Maintenance requires constant touch ups. This may mean moving around some physiological furniture and dusting. Say you develop elbow pain. Are you leaning on the elbow at work all day, do you constantly prop this arm up, have you been subjecting this arm to repetitive stress (hammering, drawing, throwing, etc.)? It’s time for a switch up! Switch arms for the task, become more ambidextrous, switch your work posture. Pain = time to change.

For a runner, it may mean new shoes. Yes, 10 years ago you were fit for the perfect shoe for your foot type—well, that was 10 years ago! Ligaments stretch, muscles change…take another look at it. Maybe you need a different type of insert, a wedge, compression socks, or a totally different type of shoe. It may also mean that more strength training needs to be done. It is well documented that strength translates to endurance; however, endurance does not translate to strength.

For a musician it may mean adjusting the heights of microphones, stands, props, pedals, changing playing and practicing posture to sitting, standing, more support, improved ergonomics, etc.

Become an investigator, google some stuff, phone a friend. Pain is normal, but you may be able to ease or eliminate it to maintain your current lifestyle and leisure activities.

Food, Supplements, and Exposure also play a huge role in life maintenance. I could eat McDonald’s and Dairy Queen as a tween and young adult too, but now I am not invincible, my guts have become sluggish…I can’t do it anymore! Eat clean and drink water—yes, water…PLEASE stop the soda and juice (unless YOU juiced it or it contains nothing but fruit juice)—bad food (stuff not from the produce or meat isle), soda and sugary juices are a request for a chronic illness. MOST days of the week be good, have some fun on the weekends. Supplement with things like probiotics, magnesium, or something else pharmaceutical grade, use high quality essential oils, and parooze the fermented food section or google what the heck fermented food is. Cut dairy and gluten MOST of the time, and eat organic as much as possible.

A little investigation and house cleaning can eliminate or decrease pain and keep you keeping on.