Friday, March 5, 2010

" When's The Last Time "

When's the last time you went to the doctor and left with a book list instead of a prescription for medicine? For me it was last Wednesday. No, it wasn't for this book on how to talk to him either.
My Orthopedic Surgeon Dr. C and I got acquainted when I fell and broke my left hip in December of 2005. He still claims I am the most amazing hip recovery patient he has ever seen. I never took a full prescription of pain pills after it and was totally released at 9 weeks. I have no limp or problems, yet I have 3 six inch screws in it.




As you know I'm having serious back problems and I'm terrified of having back surgery. After my car accident in 2001 I was told by the Neurosurgeon that I needed surgery for three herniated disc. He also told me that I had the beginnings of degenerative disc disease and that it would continue to get worse. his exact words were: "it's all down hill from here". He dropped me as a patient when I refused to let him operate on my back.


On Wednesday, Dr. C told me the only way to determine exactly what was causing the nerve irritation in my back is to do a myelogram but suggested that I read these two books before we go any further. I got the books and have read both. The one on the left is written by Dr. Mark D. Brown Md, PhD, who is a professor and the director of Orthopedics at Miami University. To read more about him, go here . I understand now why Dr. C wanted me to read this book. Dr. Brown does NOT recommend that anyone with degenerative disc disease undergo surgery. He recommends a change of diet, weight loss and walking to eliminate the problem. This book is truly amazing!
The second book is written by Ester Gokhale, L.Ac. who operates a Wellness Center in Palo Alto, California. She proclaims that most all back problems stem from poor posture, over weight and lack of proper exercise. She says that poor posture developed in the USA around the 1920s.
She has visited and photographed people from all over the world and shows how America is not only the country with the worst posture but the most back problems. She teaches you in photos how to sit, walk and stand to correct life long bad posture. If you want to know more go here .
I decided to google for pictures of pre 1920 people and was surprised how right she was....


Even these women on bikes have their backs straight and their chins tilted just like she described in the book.....



Even children practiced great posture as this child typing is doing....





This is Jodi Davis, who lives in Michigan and inspired many women to get out and walk to lose weight and feel better. Look how straight her back is with her shoulders tucked back! Looking good Jodi! If you'd like to know more about Jodi and her blog, go here.






I've known for awhile that I NEED to be out walking for weight loss. I've gained about 35 pounds in the last year. I am 5'6 and have always weighed around 140-145. Throughout my adult years I have always wore a size 10 or 12. When Eric and I married 2 years ago, I weighed 135 and wore a size 8. I now weight 180 and wear a snug 14.
I bought these Skechers Shape Up shoes about three weeks ago after reading about how they help strengthen muscles as you walk. I'm about to find out if they work!! So Dr. C and I decided yesterday that I will for the next 6 weeks follow the plans in these two books and see what the outcome is. If I still have the severe pain, we will do the myelogram and go from there. I am REALLY impressed by my doctor! Wish me luck!




Have A Great Weekend Everyone!!!!







26 comments:

JC said...

I am so sorry your have back pain. I do too. I was diagnosed with degeneratic disc disease in my early 30's. I've had four 'epideral steroid' procedures done on my back which have helped a lot. I so hope your new books and their wisdom help you ...

NCmountainwoman said...

Walking is the ultimate miracle drug. Just remember to start at a reasonable distance and pace and don't overdo it at first. (I felt obliged to add the last sentence because I sense you tend to go forward at full speed.)

Vicki Lane said...

Good plan, Carol! But I must say that I had surgery for a ruptured disc about ten years ago and it was like a miracle. Tiny incision, rapid recovery. And the doctor told me that when I recovered, I should walk for an hour every day.

Janet, said...

Hope your recovery goes well. You are right about posture, no one stands and walks erect any more.

Missy B. said...

I have been suffering from daily back pain for years, so I am going to check out these 2 books. My back pain is a little less now...I joined Weight Watchers in December, and I walk on my treadmill every morning. It seems to help. Good Luck!

Pat in east TN said...

I sure hope this all helps you.

I am 5'11" and really have to watch my posture ... it goes back to being so tall, so young and not standing up straight because I was so embarrassed. I love walking and should do more each day, and although we've changed our eating habits for the better, dropping some pounds sure isn't as easy now as it was way back when. UGH!

Nezzy said...

How great it is this day and time to find a doctor who doesn't grab for the knife at the mention of pain. I'm impressed, sister. If you haven't already, you might want to ask Dr C about the Skechers Shape Ups and make sure they do not cause extra strain on your back. Just carin' here!

God bless and have a fantastic pain free weekend! I'm praying for you girl.

jeannette stgermain said...

Also check out losethebackpain.com, Carol. They are quite practical, and they give you exercises that many have benefited from. It's run by a physical therapist and chiropractor,
and their concept is
"muscle imbalance"
and doctors give their patients the wrong exercises to do!
Walking is definitely a good thing to do for your back as well as for your weight.
Have a great weekend!

Kat said...

Ever since I have been in my 50's (going on 57) I have been on a constant struggle of weight gain, that I did not have to deal with before. It is hard to stay dedicated to walking and eating right. I know the minute I straighten my back up, I feel better. I am not way over weight, but at 160 more than my short frame should be. This winter has been hard to get out, but I am looking forward to Spring and warmer weather to get out and do things around the yard and garden. I know you can do what you need to, you seem to be a strong person. My best to you.

merrilymarylee said...

Good luck to you in those fancy walking shoes. Not only will it help your back, but those shoes are supposed to help us have sexy legs, too. :)

Does your library have digital audio books--the tiny little ones you can stick in your pocket? I walk much better with those--I want to keep walking so that I can keep listening.

You've got the willpower. I predict success (and sexy legs!) :)

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Wow Carol.... I am so impressed with your doctor. To find doctors these days who don't immediately want to either medicate or do surgery is totally awesome.

You can do it, Carol. I'm sure you can. Just start slowly and then increase your distance as you can. You'll be surprised as to how much better you will feel.

We are with you!!!!! Hang in there!
Hugs,
Betsy

Callie said...

Yay! Hurrah for your doctor who does not want to treat with surgery. Go slow, don't over do and enjoy that new posture! Looking good!

Journaling Woman said...

Sometimes we are fearful of what will make our lives better. Prayers for you.

Teresa

Arkansas Patti said...

Love his no knife approach. I have a herniated disk and if I would keep the weight off my middle and keep up my exercises, I would have no problems. A work in progress.
Find someone to walk with or that audio book Mary Lee suggested is a good idea. When I don't have a buddy, I use my MP3.

NitWit1 said...

I bought some walking shoes with some kind of air in the heel, probably like AIR NIKE, but were Easy Spirit.

I prefer MSRO exercise (Muscle Strength-Range of Motion) which has helped my back. I have to admit the near 30 pounds lost has helped the most, not only on my back, but my heart as well.

But wt. loses is hard as I refuse to do fad diets at my age. It took over 6 months to lose 25 lbs which I maintained until the Nov.DEC.JAN 1 seasonal eating orgy. Gained 3 pounds-lowest ever for that time period. I was pleased to maintain.

Jan. 2 I started "dieting again" which I am transforming into "eating healthier" in Jan. and have shed the 3 pds plus 1. As you can see it is a taxing of patience, a virtue in short supply with me.

But I am convinced it is the only right way for me.

I and my husband both have degenerative disk disease. His however is a autoimmune related type.

Elenka said...

Thank you, Carol, for a very informative post....as I'm sitting here hunched over with my chin in my hand reading this.....I've got work to do.

Anita said...

Thank you for an inspirational post. I am over 50, overweight, and have occasional back problems. I will definitely check out these books.

Hilary said...

I am so impressed with your doctor too. That's the real deal if he wants you to approach your problems in a healthy, non-invasive technique. Good for him.. and good for you for knowing it's the best. I wish you the very best. I have little doubt this will bring about great improvement for you. Keep us posted, please.

Deb Shucka said...

It sure sounds like a life-style change is in order - not just for you, but for most of us. I look forward to reading about your progress.

Glynis said...

Good luck with your task, and I must say I am impressed by your Dr. I could do with the shoes for when I walk the vineyards with the dogs, I will look into them.

Carol............. said...

What a great informative post! I have 4 screws in my lower back from a surgery almost 20 yeas ago and now have no pain or restrictions!

Tiffany Norris said...

Fascinating! I hope it helps, and your back is better soon. I've been very conscious of my posture since reading this. :)

B. WHITTINGTON said...

Good luck with the back. I need to straighten up the way I walk. Loved the old photos - goes to show those women knew what they were doing when they sat up straight.
My husband has had six back surgeries and metal implanted. IT helped him tremendously. He is an amputee and walked off balance for years. He had multiple problems. Only occasional back pain now. Loved all the pics on your site. Look forward to hearing how your back comes along. Best to you! Barb

www.barbwhitti.blogspot.com

Brenda said...

Very interesting, Carol. While reading this post, I found myself sitting up straighter. :) Good luck!

Laura said...

I am so sorry you are going through this, but I am so grateful you shared this with all of us.
What wonderful information.
Please keep us posted as you make your way through the next 6 weeks.What food plan does the book recommend?

Laura

Brenda Kay Ledford said...

I'm so sorry about your back pain. I know it is just awful. I sure hope walking will help eliminate the pain and you won't have to have surgery. Thanks for sharing the book with us about how to talk with your doctor. Hope you get to feeling better.