Monthly Archives: June 2013

A new (to me) look at exercising

I was a runner at one time. I went from couch potato/non-athlete to runner when I joined the military and had to run a mile and a half in 12 minutes in order to graduate. In addition, there was an award you could earn if you ran an average of three miles a day during the training period, and that was motivating. After I graduated from training, I continued to run three to six miles a day. I was hooked on that runner’s high you hear about. It always took a mile of awfulness to reach it, though, no matter how fit I was. At about the three-quarter point I’d always feel like quitting, as if I couldn’t put one foot in front of the other to save my life, and yet I did. And then I’d hit the mile point, and all of a sudden it was effortless, I could run forever, I couldn’t feel my feet touching the ground — was I flying?

After the babies started coming I went from running to walking. I did a lot of walking, racking up Volkswalk kilometers every weekend. We had dogs all through the years, and the dogs needed walking.

And then, a few years ago, something happened. My knees went out on me. We completed a three-mile Volkswalk as a family, and by the last mile I was in agony. I haven’t Volkswalked since. I did a little walking (still with the dog) since then, anywhere from 1/4 mile to 2 miles a day, but my knees got really bad this spring, even with the water kefir, and now it’s a struggle to walk 1/4 mile. I walked half a mile this morning, and I think my knees are done for the day.

I’m still hoping this Paleo thing will help to restore my joints. Hoping. My elbows and fingers seem to be responding well, anyhow. Let’s hope the knees get the message.

Anyhow, I had read on some Paleo discussion board about someone my age whose knees had given out — did Paleo (or maybe it was Primal), eliminated inflammatory foods, and the knees came back (against all orthopedist’s predictions). That’s what I’m hoping for! I hadn’t been thinking about running again — I’d be happy just to walk, to be able to be on my feet most of the day and not hurt.

After reading this article this morning, I’m even more certain about not taking up running again. Who knew? I always thought I was doing my body a favor by running three to six miles a day…

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A funny thing happened on the way to the meat counter…

I promised on another post earlier that I would tell you a funny thing that happened when I was passing through New Seasons on my way to the meat counter, to pick up more “stuff” to base paleo-style meals on.

A wine representative was offering tastes of his lovingly crafted red and white wines (I forget exactly what they were — Pinot? Shiraz? Chardonnay? Since I didn’t taste any of them I really wasn’t paying attention.). Eldest was with me, and stopped to ask for a taste. The man offered me a tasting glass as well, and I said no-but-thank-you, I was trying to follow the Paleo autoimmune protocol.

…upon which he laughed and said he was following Paleo himself, had been since January, and had noticed a huge difference in how well he felt after just five days! He was telling me about this book he’d read, to start off, and in the last chapter “the guy says he knows you’re not going to be able to stick to such a strict diet, and so he allows two glasses of wine a night…”

I told him I knew exactly what book he was talking about, as I had just finished reading that book myself. It’s Robb Wolf’s Paleo Solution (affiliate link, just so you know — if you click on it and buy the book I get a little pocket money, and thanks! If you don’t, no biggie).

Another man was passing us, browsing the smoked salmon and pre-packaged bacon, and turned to ask, “Who allows two glasses of wine a night?”

The wine seller told him, and he excitedly said, “I’m doing Paleo, too!” The two of them immediately began enthusing about the benefits they’d reaped and comparing notes about how to “do” Paleo.

I felt as if I’d joined some sort of secret club or something. Honestly, all I need is a sign and countersign (oh, maybe I already have one) and just add a secret handshake and I’m in business.

If it’s a bandwagon, well, I’m glad I’ve jumped on. Feeling better every day. These Paleo people are on to something.

Make that: We Paleo people are on to something.

Night and Day

I can’t believe the difference.

Yesterday I could barely move my left leg. Walking around Costco and Trader Joe’s was more of a shuffle than a walk, and worse than that, it was agony to get in and out of the car. The right knee, oddly enough, was working much better than the left. (I say “oddly enough” because it’s the right knee that I kept re-injuring over the past two weeks. Every time it would start to get better, I would catch my foot and trip on something and the healing process would have to begin again.)

You might or might not recall that I’ve been eating Paleo/primal style for the past three weeks in a desperate effort to find relief for my painful knees and joints. For some reason, the water kefir that had been keeping me pain free over the past year wasn’t working anymore.

I had a big dose of nightshades (tomato and peppers) in Monday night’s dinner — was that enough to cripple me on Tuesday? Could be. I was very careful yesterday, avoided all semblance of nightshade (tomato, peppers, paprika, eggplant — which I can take or leave, but the other stuff appears regularly on our table), and woke up this morning in much less pain. Got in and out of the car this morning without a twinge. There’s still a little pain there, in both knees, a sort of underlying barely noticeable occasional ache, but nothing like yesterday, and all the other joints seem to be humming along nicely, which they weren’t, not exactly, yesterday.

Coincidence?

Just in case, I’m going to be avoiding tomatoes, peppers, and paprika today as well, to see if the improvement continues.