Wednesday, April 11, 2018

A Predicted Pain?

Long anticipated, not in a good way, but part of progress, I may be entering a difficult aspect of my metamorphosis.  Let me back up.

Part of my twisted, perverted, structural posture that evolved as I grew, included the an issue with my hips.  I have pointed out before the sharp pain I would sometimes experience as a teen when I entered a car, which I believe would result in a bad adjustment, a twisting or folding of muscle and/or ligament out of proper position.

An odd result of this which I never questioned was that I could pick up heavy things without pain when observers thought it should hurt.  By this, I understand now that I picked up things not using my legs, but my back, only, because muscles around my hips were out of place, too wrapped further up my abdomen on one side, back on the other, my muscles had incorrect leverage from a position/posture that an observer would assume was all back muscles and should hurt.

Well, I have long wondered if I would get those muscles in the right place, and what would happen as a result.  Would I be vulnerable to back injuries?  Strain and/or hernia?  Would my muscle memory have me picking things up with my back still, without that leverage?

It may be starting.  I’ve had substantial rotational shifts in both thighs at the hip and internal shifting in my abdomen (sometimes leaving me in gastro-intestinal distress afterwards, just to add, as I presume things work their way into positions, hopefully improvements).  My lower back is hurting and tender towards bending, even lowering my head sometimes causes strain pain.

If only my gut were not so big and I could ascertain how my flexibility has changed.  Still go just as far, but clearly more bending at hip, not back, at least until the gut gets in the way, lol.  Anyways...

An issue at present is that my lower back need to strengthen and maintain an arch leaning backwards that it is not used to, while at the same time, my lower abdomen needs to crunch and cause tension as if an arch forward.  Predictably, when I think “arch backwards,” the arch happens at my lower abdomen, not the lower back, and when I sit, my lower back is like the opposite of a lumbar support arch.  To revisit a lyric from Oingo Boingo’s Not the Same Man I Was Before, “Everything you do is wrong!”

This is going to take some serious mindfulness.  At least for now, I get quick and sharp pain reminders when I am doing things wrong.  As I get a little better, a little stronger, I will have to start worrying about really hurting myself with a “traditional” injury, I believe.

The Summer cannot get here soon enough.  I’ve gotten to the pool twice, but weather is still too cold, really.  Hopefully, I’ll get good pool time before May rolls around.

Saturday, March 17, 2018

What the . . . ?

It’s been a very difficult winter.

Last Tuesday, I had a most unfortunate trip to the DMV where nearly everything that could go wrong did go wrong.  Their computers went down, voiding appointments, making the start of the experience waiting in line outside the building in the rain.  It could have gone much worse, but the hour+ I spent in line has left me a complete mess since.

My hips have been a nightmare.

Until 45 minutes ago.

I stood up to go to the kitchen, and found I could not put any pressure on my right ankle.  It feels like a horrible sprain.  It sometimes gets similar to this pain, but a quick crack of the ankle looping the toes usually takes care of it.  I find myself unable to crack it at all, which, if you think about it, is probably some kind of improvement.

Yet, the pain of pushing off at all is nearly unbearable.

Then, I noticed I no longer had the hip pains that plagued me all week.

Did I send the “excess” bunched up in the hip down the leg to the ankle?  Without realizing it?

Possibly, I think.  It would not surprise me.  I have been stretching and contorting around the hip so much it is becoming unconscious, save efforts to alter the direction of movements.

Sigh.  What’s next?  Guess I need to figure out how to walk again.

Saturday, February 17, 2018

New Moves, Same Story?

Toungue-tied and twisted
Just an earthbound misfit, I
                         - Pink Floyd

I swam near two weeks ago.  The swim went okay, 45 minutes or so, very good for a first swim, but it worked me over something fierce.

-  -  -  -  -  -

I’ve been playing with meditative focus on Chalkra points (the 7 common ones used all over the web), and had some interesting changes in my neck, though it was in combination with the shoulder changes of late.

It, too, had changes to my neck and throat, making swallowing difficult again for some time.  That was until it got really bad, and I found myself pulling my arm out of socket to stretch some perceived knot in my throat.  Then, that food swallowed, the neck felt much better, and has felt better since.  Some changes still progressing from this up into my jaw and face.

-  -  -  -  -  -

The other new move, just today, was around the shoulders.  Instead of focus on the joint, or a point on a 360 around the joint, I broadened.  I went on the chest and back, maybe 5-7 inches from the shoulder.  The results were immediate, new “adjustments” to the shoulder.

The first time, it changed something in the right shoulder that cascaded down my right arm, quite involuntarily.  Similar to how some old “adjustments” made me punch myself in the head accidentally, this one sent the arm in an awkward swing.  Of course, I was not lucky enough to only hit air.  The back of my hand slammed into a counter top edge, a rounded one, but hard enough to break skin.  Should leave one hell of a bruise.

I did some more playing with it in the hot tub (mainly because I had just added chlorine and thought it the easiest way to disinfect the hand, lol), and after some moderate work, the body feels quite different, hopefully for the better.

Predictably, putting the comfy shirt on afterwards, the shirt was not so comfy anymore.  I changed some form again, though not much, I believe.  It’s just suddenly tighter in some spots, looser in others.

I am really not sure how much longer I can do this.  I am mentally spent, just trying to hang on until it warms up outside.

Sunday, January 7, 2018

A Useless, Unimportant, Boring, Not Interesting At All, Update

I hate cold.  This remains true.  It has been very rough since I stopped swimming.  I’ve already gained 12 pounds, too.

That said, I got one of those, under the desk, pedal exercise thingies, with my Christmas Amazon gift card winnings, and just started using it, although in a ergonomic gamer chair.  The result is that I can do a little work on my back, somehow, by pedaling in a crunched-like position, and focusing on my back.

Doing it, I found myself working a muscle group I would often target while kicking in the pool.

Best case scenario, it helps me continue to work muscle up my back and to the shoulders.

Time will tell.

See.  I told you this was boring.

Friday, October 6, 2017

One Fisted Breast Stroke

In what was likely one of the last swims of the season if long range weather forecasts are correct (hopefully, I’ll get 8-10 still this month before going into hibernation mode), I had significant progress in both shoulders.

At first, I tried out swimming breast stroke with both hands in loose, relaxed, fists.  This put the onus on my biceps and shoulders to push the water compared to the cups of my hands.  Early on, I noticed good things happening in my right shoulder, bad, very bad, horrible things in the left.

I switched to a one fisted breast stroke, the right in a loose fist, the left using a cup and more traditional pull.

Just as toe walking cascades up the legs and has the hips in a poorer position, my fingers do much of the pulling for the cups of my hands when I swim.  Yet, it does appear that my off hand (I’m right handed) needs those muscles, and that line of tension, strengthened.

In the right shoulder, wow.

It quickly was further back then ever.  When I switched to kickboard later, my arm position was totally new because the right shoulder was further back.  It cascaded into my neck and head and eyes.  I was able to yawn in new ways, stretching muscles normally locked.

I did some unwinding.  No, I did a lot of unwinding.

Hopefully I get some good work done before I run out of warmth.

Saturday, September 23, 2017

It Got Cold

It looks like it will warm up next week again, but the cold is coming.

Today was in the 50s while biking to the pool.  Too cold.  I tried, but it was a difficult experience.

I have used the metaphor before regarding a garden hose with kinks that have become near permanent.  When it's cold, swimming is like trying to water a lawn with such a hose.  Sections of my body simply can't get loose, kinks remain and cause problems to cascade everywhere.

About 80 minutes into the swim, I felt decent, but it was still clear I was not going to get things able to work, able to adjust.  I was not worth the extra pain and discomfort of the rough start, and it was a very rough start.

Now, it's weekends where the lap swim ends when it starts on weekdays.  So, there may well be a month still with some decent swimming, but I am dreading the eminent end of my swim season.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Ride the Wave, Stupid!

Okay.  I have not been able to pre-formulate a narrative for this one.  I have no real idea how to put it in prose.  So, I am not really going to try.  This one is much more so for me to help remember than any attempt to express it to others, but who knows?  Maybe it will be clearer to readers in this form than my attempts at writing.

Presumption: the path of a wave is a helix

I have written about the Illusion of Circles.  I do not believe things exist in two dimensions in this reality.  There are no lines or points on lines, no circles.  Things exist and move in 3 dimensions.

A wave does not travel the path of a sine wave or cosine.  Those are both two dimensional translations, interpretations, of a helix.

What I've Been Doing Focussed In Two Dimensions

Even when I have been conscious of my muscles and ligaments being connected in a helix path around my bones and through my body (expansion and contraction is a topic for another day, but a hint is that I'd bet it expands and/or contracts, size wise, or at least it ideally does, at a rate consistent with phi, a Golden Ratio type thing), I always focus on points to "unfold," planes to bend upon, etc, always in two dimensions.

Surf, Baby!  Surf!

My focus should always be along the path of a wave, allowing my muscles to ride the wave, and that wave is a helix.  Even if I am correct that my body has "kinks" or "folds" or some form of tangles like bunched up curtain cords, the way to correct the issues will not be found in two dimensions.  Movement should stress riding the wave, allowing muscle contraction and physical movement to occur more naturally.

Example: Kick Board Kicking

I am not going to try to write what happened in the pool or what I hope was progress, but I will give one example with how I found really interesting changes applying this to the kick board.

I focussed at the very tip of an ergonomical kick board, and I made little circles, tiny circles, with it, which, moving forward made a tiny helix.  This wave I caught with my arms, into the shoulders, through the body to the hips, and transformed into fluid kicks.  I could feel the oscillation.

I noticed, though tiny and possibly unnoticeable by others, I was slightly wiggling like a crocodile atop the water.  I had far less drag than normal.  I was moving pretty smooth and fast with relatively little expended energy.  I was surfing more than pushing through the water, after all.

Last Point: Oscillation

One thought which hit me during the swim I now want to add while I have in my head was regarding oscillation.  It also occurs in three dimension!

I return to the crocodile.  I would be VERY interested to see video of some swimming animals be analyzed and checked for a helix where we visually presume two dimensional oscillation.  I would not be surprised at all to find swimming animals do this innately, say the tip of a dolphin's nose makes tiny circles like the tip of my kick board, that type of thing.

I'm exhausted.  No more writing.  Hopefully, this line of focus will lead to more helpful changes before I run out of warm enough weather to swim in.