K: Kickboxing and krav maga


Despite my aversion to exercise, see post here, I do love kickboxing.  I have done it twice.  Each time I loved it.  And each time I couldn’t walk for days.  Or I could walk, but very painfully.

My husband loves boxing.  He is the very athletic without trying type.  Grr.  He chooses to channel his emotions physically, through running, boxing, etc.  The story of how he roped me into it can be found here.

What I like is how it makes me feel that my body isn’t useless.  How I feel that I’m not defective.  That my  muscles and bones and joints and tendons can all work together like they are supposed to.  I don’t feel sick in the one hour that I am trying to keep up with the class, although I’m sure I look pretty sick.  In my head I look like one of those MMA chicks.

Also, what is important for me as a rape survivor, is that I feel like I could defend myself.  I feel like, if I were in a situation again where I was powerless, I could do something to protect myself.  That is so important to me.  I do still have a goal of actually attending krav maga classes one day, just right now financially and health wise it is not realistic.  Hopefully one day I can get to a place where I can make that happen physically/financially etc.

The exhaustion from that kind of exercise is different from the usual exhaustion.  It is a PRODUCTIVE exhaustion, if that makes any sense at all.  Normally, just walking around all day exhausts me.  But that kind of exhaustion makes me feel like I’ve earned it.  Like I’ve battled for it.

It’s on the goal list…


E: Exercise



Yes, exercise is good for me.  But I pretty much hate it.  I am not one of these fitness nuts.  I have never been athletic.  I have always been a klutz.  But I do know that it helps what is wrong with me, and that sitting on the couch isn’t good for anyone.

But through experience, I have learned that going hard is not good for my body.  I have to start low and go slow.  I have to do low impact.  Even when I’m feeling better I have to watch that I don’t overdo it because I will feel worse.  Because then I won’t walk for days.

Yoga is good for fibro and autoimmune.  Walking is good.  Swimming is good.  Boxing is not good.  Neither is running.  Even the elliptical at the gym is way too high impact for me.  I have learned this from experience.  Painful experience.

I do have a goal of learning krav maga one day, but that is far off.  I know that I have to build up my body before I can even entertain that idea.

But it is spring.  It is a time of renewal.  And hopefully after the winter that never ended I will be back to yoga.

A fibro Thanksgiving

I think I overdid it.  Again.

Left knee is KILLING me.  It is a stabbing pain in the middle of my knee cap.  I don’t remember twisting it or jerking it.  So I’m taking it easy today (at least exercise wise) while I try to figure out what is going on.

I didn’t really contribute to last year’s Thanksgiving, because I was too sick.

This year, I’m doing the stuffing and the mashed potatoes.  Oh and I made Steeler cupcakes because they are playing tomorrow night.  And my family loves the Dallas Cowboys.  Just have to remind them who has the most Superbowl wins.

I make my stuffing and potatoes from scratch, so I’m trying to do as much as I can a head of time.

Also, my mom is determined to make this “the most perfect Thanksgiving in the universe” so she is running around here like a turkey with their head cut off.  I think she has rearranged the dining room three times now.

We are expecting around 20 people.

So I did the cupcakes this morning.  It was also a practice run for the cupcakes I’m making for Sunshine’s upcoming birthday.  I just wanted to make sure they turned out ok before the big day.

I chopped the celery, herbs, onions and garlic.  My eyes are still watering.

Sunshine is the “bread” girl, in charge of putting the bread out to stale and turning it over to make sure each side stales evenly.

My mom is doing the turkey, and the rest of our guests bring something.  It should be fun.  I just hope that people can behave for company.

Good Lord.  The several hours I spent on my feet already have NOT helped the knee situation.  No swelling.  Just pain.  I hope it isn’t indicative of something more seriously wrong.  Like RA.  Hopefully it is just overuse.

I’m learning to shake off the constant criticism.  I was asked to clean the bathroom, and again, I explained that I already agreed with my husband that he would take that duty, since the chemicals give me a migraine.  Again, she pretended not to remember that very specific issue I have with strong smells, especially chemical ones.  So I continued with the prep that I CAN do.

If I hear “it is my house, I’ll yell when I want to” one more time, I think I may start yelling.  She yells at inanimate objects, the animals, us, Sunshine.  I don’t want Sunshine subjected to the constant yelling.  Its not good for her.  She is beginning to have issues in school, and recently confided to her teacher about all the stuff going on in the house.  I have a meeting scheduled next week with both her teacher and therapist.

I’m debating on if I should even broach the subject with my parents.  I don’t want Sunshine to continue to suffer, but I’m concerned that voicing my complaints will earn me a spot at the homeless shelter.  I have been threatened several times with expulsion for seemingly minor infractions.

So I hope tomorrow goes well.  I hope that the police don’t need to make an appearance.  I hope that my mother remembers she’s an adult, and that others are entitled to their opinion.  Judging by the screaming match that erupted at dinner the other night (about the news reports of the “knockout game”)  I am really concerned.

Hope you all have a pleasant, pain free, fatigue free holiday!!

PS:  I’ve dropped 20lbs since August!!



“Good” pain

Things in my house haven’t gotten any better.  If anything, they are worse.  Which is probably why I’ve been to the gym four times this week.

And it HURTS!!

I don’t think its pulled muscle pain, more like “I have fibro and I’ve been to the gym” pain.

With fibro, any kind of muscle exertion hurts more and way longer than it would to a “normal” person.  Which is probably why the past few days have been so much fun.

I’m taking a break tomorrow and probably on Sunday, I’ll get back to it on Monday.

Its nice to know that it is possible to have this level of physical activity with fibro and not keel over.  The pain isn’t fun, especially in my quads.  Getting up to standing from sitting is awful.  I’ve been popping Tylenol for the past few days.

But it feels really good about halfway through my workouts and for a few hours after.  I come home right away and take a hot shower.  And I hydrate.

I’m sleeping better too.

So I’ll probably continue this trend.  It gets me out of the house, it helps with the aggression I’m feeling toward people in my household, and its having good side effects for my health.



If I didn’t have fibro, I think I would do the boxing thing for exercise.

My husband has been boxing at a local gym for the past two years.  His main goal was to help lower his blood pressure and to get in better shape.  He has succeeded.  And he looks AMAZING.

I have always been wary of going with him due to the fibro.  I KNOW any extreme exertion can put me in pain for a week.  But yesterday, I needed to do more than exercise.

I need to get out some aggression.

So I went with my husband.  The warm-up nearly killed me.  Jogging with medicine balls.  Over the head.  Wow.

When we started the actual sequences of boxing moves, it got better.  I threw my entire being into punching that bag.  I almost cried, I was so emotional.

It felt incredible.

By the end of the one hour, I was out of gas.  I still tried to keep up with the ab exercises, but I couldn’t do them with the medicine ball.

Wow.  That was one hell of a work out.  I honestly don’t think I have ever done something so exerting in my life, other than giving birth.

It did more for me than just exercise my muscles.  It helped exercise some of the pent up rage I didn’t know I had buried deep down.

I came home, took a hot shower, hydrated.  I took a short nap.  I spent the rest of the evening resting, hydrating, stretching.

Even then, I still had a migraine (a right sided one, which is rare and extremely painful).  I think it was from the dehydration.

Today…dear God.  Every single muscle in my body is screaming.  Especially my quads and hamstrings.  I’ve been popping ibuprofen since late last night.

The pain is incredible.  I’m about a 7-8.  All over.  But sometimes its a “good hurt”.

I’m planning on exercising later today.  I’m hoping to push through it and exercise the pain away.

But I did it.  I survived an entire hour of extreme exercise.  And I’m still alive.  I didn’t give up.  I didn’t puke.  I can’t tell you how good it feels to accomplish a goal like that.

I am probably not adding boxing to my limited exercise routine, but just knowing that I did it, and that I didn’t require a trip to the ER, it makes me feel like I can do anything.

It’s akin to how I felt after I gave birth to Sunshine.  I was diagnosed a year prior to her birth.  At 23, my body routinely failed me, and I was scared that I would never get pregnant, that I wouldn’t be able to carry a child to full term.

After a very uneventful labor, I had a healthy, pink bundle of happiness wriggling in my arms.  I couldn’t believe that I did it.

And that is similar to how I am feeling right now.

I did it.  And I’m going to continue to do it.

The literature on the benefits of exercise is staggering.  I hope to continue this path, that I can continue to heal.

I feel that exercising is helping me deal with my current living situation.  I’ll have more on that in another post.

Thank you all for your positive vibes.  It is greatly appreciated.


I survived the gym!!

I am so happy with myself right now.

I felt like hell this morning.  It was frosty outside, and my muscles and joints DID NOT want to cooperate.  But I forced myself to go to the gym.  And I didn’t die.

I did 25 min on the treadmill (walking) and 10 minutes on the bike.

And now I feel a ton better.

Now to take a HOT HOT shower to make sure my body doesn’t stiffen up again.


Welcome back to the land of the living

One thing I love about Austin is the plethora of street festivals.

Ever since I have lived here, I have tried to make it to at least one or two per year.

Last year, I made it to one, right before my diagnosis.  I was unable to do the things I wanted to do, i.e. the fall festivals and Halloween, because I was too sick.

So I was extremely excited to be well enough to go to the Pecan Street Festival this year.

I gathered Sunshine and some girlfriends (and one of their reluctant husbands) and we set out to have some fun.

Sunshine got to ride a pony and pet a baby zebra, Mama got some much needed girl time with her besties, and we all got to experience the wonderful eclectic mix of people that is Austin.

When I told my mom what my plans were, she was so excited.

She said “welcome back to the land of the living”.  And I am very happy to be here.

I have done more exercise, participated in more activities in the past two weeks than I have in the prior year.

Methotrexate, not working, and massive doses of steroids really do take their toll.

In addition to working, I have started hanging out with my girls again.  Which is much needed.  Before, I couldn’t tolerate getting out of bed, getting ready, and going somewhere.  Never mind that through the worst of the floaters and issues with cataracts, that I didn’t feel safe driving.  So that seriously curbed my social life.  But my friends were awesome, accommodating me when needed, one even cleaning my house when she came to babysit (she even cleaned my microwave!!).  So its wonderful to be able to return some of their hospitality.

Just hoping that this continues.  That I’m able to stay off the meds and continue getting healthy.

I am already thinking of fun costumes for Halloween…


I’ll take any good news I can get…

Appointment with rheumatologist today..

My liver numbers are good, my CBC is good, my SED rate is good. C-reactive protein still elevated, but that’s expected.  But not higher than usual.

The big news?

If my eyes look ok next week at the eye doctors, I can stay off of steroids and immunosuppressive therapy.

Hell, even if he needs to do a little pokey in the eye and inject more steroids, I am all for it.

How horrible is that?  I would rather have an injection INTO my eye than go back on those meds.

I have felt fantastic (most of the time) since stopping methotrexate back in May, and the steroids in August.  Outside of my occasional  screw ups with meds (i.e. taking myself off of them) I have been doing much better than a year ago.

I have been walking most days this week.  I was going to start running, but the doc said to absolutely stay away from running.  She said biking, swimming, walking are cool, but without knowing if my sarcoid will spread to my joints, she doesn’t want me doing anything high impact.

So I’ll take whatever good news I can get.  Hoping beyond hope that the little floaters and lights that have crept back into my vision are easily remedied with a needle to the eye.


Snap, crackle, pop

I’m not talking about the cereal here.

I’m talking about the sounds I make in yoga class.

Since I have been off steroids, I have been making a concerted effort to be more active.

My parents live next to a “green belt” (for those of you unfamiliar, it basically mean “the woods”) and there are walking trails.

And EVERYBODY and their mother, dog and children are out in the evenings and mornings running or walking.  This has to be the most physically fit place I have ever lived.

My ultimate goal is to be able to go to one of my husband’s boxing classes and make it through the entire class without dying.  I’m tentatively setting this goal for next summer.

He finally came to a yoga class with me today.  And he wants to go back.

Yoga has seriously been the best exercise for me since my fibro diagnosis almost 8 years ago.

I started it in my teens and would go to class as time allows.

Mostly every day I have done some sort of stretching.  Either in bed, in a chair, or out on the floor with a mat.

I have been able to keep up with the regular classes, going to the “gentle” classes when I was on methotrexate.

That is one thing I would recommend to anyone with fibro.  Find a “gentle” yoga class.  Go.  Yes, you will feel muscles you never knew you had before, and you will be sore for a few days, but if you do light stretching the next day, it helps.

The endorphins released during this type of exercise really helps with the pain.  The meditation helps as well.  And maintaining flexibility is paramount to having the use of all of your muscles as you age with this disease

A very positive day today (so far).  I’m helping out with Sunshine’s Daisy troop later in the day.  10 shrieking, active, little girls.  Wish me luck..



I went overboard again…

I’m trying to jump start my health and I did way, way too much yesterday..

It is HOT in Texas.  It was 105 yesterday.  So we spent a few hours at the pool.

I did about 10 laps of the junior Olympic size pool.  I played with Sunshine, throwing her in the water, flipping her over.

And now I’m paying for it.  Dearly.

My muscles are very painful.  Its the fibro pain, not the autioimmune pain.  And it sucks.

It takes a tremendous amount of effort to do ANYTHING today.

I’m going to try to push through it.  We are planning to go back to the pool today (and probably every day this week, as the low temperature will be nearly 80).  I’m hoping to do some more laps and see if I can overcome this initial hurdle.

It is pretty apparent that we will eventually be moving.  So far, they can’t kick us out until February, so that’s a good thing.  I’m kind of hoping for a last minute miracle (child support, family support etc) to help us bridge the gap and allow us to pay on time.  As it stands, my husband doesn’t get paid again until the 7th, and that is four days  late on rent.


Positive thinking:

– school starts later this month.  As much as I love Sunshine…I am READY for school to start again.

– I will be working most of September and October in some capacity.  It doesn’t help the situation now, but at least I’ll be able to feed my kids…

– football and hockey seasons are on the horizion.  GO STEELERS!!  GO PENS!!

– my husband is amazing and I’m thankful every day that we found our way back to each other

Hoping this pain subsides…