Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Health, Youth & Fitness, 2

In December of 2009 I was doing 350+ push-ups three times a week. The problem was that I was waking up the next morning with my neck & upper back a wreck. It often took me an hour or more to work the kinks out to the point where I could function.

My lower back was affecting my ability to take my daily walks. As I walked, the muscles in the sacrum and lumbar regions would progressively tighten until each step became painful.

I've had back issues for years, and in recent years I've tried a number of methods to help cope. Back exercises, stretching, hanging by my hands from the upper rungs of a ladder -- anything to put things right. In spite of those efforts, I gave up on doing push-ups in December, and I was losing my motivation to take walks.

Then, in February, my wife made an appointment for me to see a chiropractor. I have been going to him three times a week since then, and I'm seeing steady progress in my mobility and freedom from pain.

As my structural integrity improves, I will need less frequent sessions. In the meantime, my walking is now pain free (most of the time), and I'm back to doing push-ups.

Last Saturday, I did five sets of 25 reps, & 1 set of 20 reps. I also find that I can now get lower in the "down" half of the push-up: an increased range of motion as a result of structural corrections.

My goal is 500 push-ups by the end of this year. Next year, I want to concentrate on Indian (some call them "Hindu" push-ups. Maybe the following year, I'll be able to do some vertical push-ups -- something I haven't done since I was about 19 yrs. old.

I do push-ups three days a week, and on the alternate three days, I do some of John E. Peterson's DVR and DSR exercises, as found in his book Pushing Yourself to Power: The Ultimate Guide to Total Body Transformation

Even though I'm doing fewer push-ups, I would have to say that my general level of health and fitness is better now than it was a year ago. For this, I am thankful to the Lord that, in His providence He led me to a modality of treatment that has made a huge difference in my physical capabilities.

I may inflict one more installment of this series on my readers to assess the state of my skills.

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