Sunday, March 23, 2003

What a difference a few hours make.

I slept in this morning. We were supposed to go to Sunday School class, and I was really looking forward to it. But I was nauseous last night, so I didn't want to push myself today. Well, I slept in so late that my back was painfully stiff. I gently worked it back into some semblance of normalcy.

After having brunch with my family, we headed back to my parents' house so that my sister could unwrap her birthday gifts. While she did so, I was on the floor, effortlessly moving from one Pilates move to another. My mom was pleasantly surprised to watch me stretch and grab my feet, and then move into other strength moves. I used to not be able to grab my foot when I stretched my leg out, but now I was grabbing the arch with little effort. I even was able to reach down and touch the floor in a straight-legged forward bend - the first time I've ever done that!

I've never been flexible, and up until recently, I had to deal with a lot of pain. Now, even though I have this disease that could affect my mobility, I'm more flexible than ever...most of the time. I just have to ease into it some days when I start out stiff. I also have to keep working at it, to keep showing the improvement.

Wednesday, March 19, 2003

Well, I was going to start a new blog yesterday, but it's not working yet. Oh well. Hopefully, I'll be able to get this to work.

Tonight is the start of my Pilates Mat 2 class. If you would have told me I would not only make it through Mat 1, but would sign up for a second dose, I would have laughed. Well, I would have laughed after about two or three classes, anyway. But I'm sticking with it and looking forward to this evening.

Monday, March 17, 2003

Had an up and down week. Most of the week was great (despite the showing of my basketball teams). But I reacted poorly to my shot this weekend and spent most of the time resting. I had so little energy that I missed going to dinner with friends on Saturday and Tim's performance with the MasterChorale on Sunday. I was tired, feverish, and had a few chills. Sigh. Just when I think I've got the side effects licked, I have them again. I guess I'm just one of those people forced to deal with sporadic side effects.

Didn't finish my Get With the Program exercise program this weekend, since I was too tired to do another cardio and stretching session. Oh, well. That's just how it goes sometimes. I've scheduled some workouts for this week, and we'll see if I'm up to keeping these appointments with myself.

Monday, March 10, 2003

Greenbrier Weekend

We had a wonderful vacation! The weather was absolutely perfect, which they said is a first for a long time. On Friday night, we basically just rested and ate. After an awesome breakfast on Saturday, we took a tour of their formerly-top-secret bunker. We had a quick lunch, then took a carriage ride around the resort. Then it was off to the spa for some stone massages, followed by more relaxing and eating. We shopped a little yesterday before getting into the car to head home. We stopped by Tim's grandmother's for a surprise visit during the afternoon, and then got home to cheer on both of our alma maters to upset victories in basketball.

The only downside of the weekend was some lower back pain. It's been almost two months since it's felt this bad. Even the massage didn't do a whole lot for it. I have an herbal back pillow that I can heat up and apply to it, but I can't find the thing - ack.

Anniversary Update

I'll be too busy this weekend to mope about the fact that I was diagnosed with MS a year ago. On Friday night, I'll be watching the ACC Tournament at home with Tim and our friends Walter and Rhonda. In addition to watching more basketball and having a fantasy baseball draft on Saturday, I'll also be heading out for dinner with friends, including one of Tim's colleagues from Germany. I always have a blast with this crew.

The ACC Tournament is one of my favorite sporting events of the year. Who am I kidding? It's the best. I just wish I could be home Friday afternoon to watch Wake Forest play, but things will be too busy at work, unfortunately. At least UVA managed to avoid the play-in game, so I can watch them on Friday night while munching on pizza and wings and having a beer. That's a great way to spend a Friday night.

Get With the Program

Now that vacation is over, it's time to kick it up a notch and enter Phase 2. The goals include adding another glass of water and another day of functional exercises. I've been meeting the Phase 2 requirements for those two areas for the past two weeks, so no problem there. I also am supposed to start adding cardio and limiting my alcohol. Between the fitness center at work (literally, right around the corner from my desk) and my exercises videos, I should be able to handle the cardio requirement.

I'm going to do an exercise video tonight. I planned to make black bean lasagna for dinner, and it takes awhile to bake. On the plus side, that means I can put it together, throw it in the oven, and forget about it while I work out. Tim has a meeting tonight, so I will have plenty of time to do both my functional exercises and a cardio workout before dinner. I've already exceeded my water requirement for today, so I'm on track there.

Thursday, March 06, 2003

I always tell myself I'm going to write something in my blog, but then I let things pile up until I end up writing one big massive entry.


Woohoo! Tim and I leave tomorrow for a long weekend at The Greenbrier. I bought a certificate at a charity auction and got a great deal. After our amazing anniversary trip last June to the Grove Park in Asheville, I've got Tim addicted to resort/spa vacations. But what's not to like? Getting pampered, great food, and not having to worry about chores, taxes, etc. for an entire weekend!

Tim excitedly poured over the spa menu and decided to try a stone massage. Since I've never had one, I thought it would be fun to try something new. So Saturday afternoon, we'll find out what the fuss is all about. Tim also wants to take a carriage ride while we're there - should be fun!


I got email last week! It was so cool hearing from folks. It also reminded me how far (and I mean really far) behind I am on responding to the regular mail I've gotten. And let's not even bring up the fact that I didn't have my act together to get Christmas cards out this year. I have been thrilled by every letter, note, and card I've gotten, and I am trying to get back on track with my correspondence so I can let folks know personally.

Happy? Anniversary

The 15th of this month will mark a year since I found out I have MS. I plan to spend the day watching the ACC Tournament semi-finals and participating in a fantasy baseball online draft. In other words, I plan to just keep doing what I always do. That's all I can do, isn't it?

The Silly Side of My Life

As I mentioned, I have a fantasy baseball team. Actually, I have two teams, the Ballhogs and Base-ically Evil. I also have a fantasy hockey team (Bluebabies), a fantasy NBA team (BallGods), and a fantasy golf team (19th Hole Gang). Once a sports junkie, always a sports junkie. I've just expanded into fantasy sports. At least I don't have a fantasy NASCAR team...yet/


I'm still doing a great job on my Get With the Program exercises, and I'm easily beating the minimum number of workouts per week. Next week, I'm moving to Phase 2 of the program, so I'll have to balance those exercises with cardio workouts. Given the number of days I'm currently exercising, it should not be a problem.

My Pilates class comes to an end next week. I've already signed up for the continuation. During class Tuesday, I was amazed at how far I've come...and how much I still have to learn. But I'm having a lot less back pain, both frequency and severity. My flexibility has already improved dramatically. Given the muscle spasticity that can accompany MS, I am definitely sticking with what is working for me.

It's funny, though...I used to hate doing ab exercises (and I'm still not enthused about the ones in GWTP), but I enjoy working my abs like crazy during Pilates class. Go figure.

MS Walk

The MS Walk is scheduled for Saturday, April 5. I've been a deadbeat about registering, but I will be doing the walk. More information to follow. Since I'm not in as good shape this year as I was last year, I'll definitely be needing moral support to get through this!