Keep on swimming…

AppleWatchSwimKnee pain. I’ve been living with it for a while. All of the high impact workouts I had been doing last year exacerbated my knee arthritis and while I have come a long way, I’ve had a pretty big setback. Cortisone injections and physical therapy have kind of kept things at bay while I have been finding some alternate ways for getting my exercise in.

Last week, I miraculously got a next-day appointment for a cortisone injection. And it’s not working.  My knee actually feels worse.  My ortho doc said that cycling and swimming were the best activities I could do.

Seeing how I have no pool, I joined a local gym that has a lap pool and cycling classes. I started going there last week (and made it every day) and strategically worked myself up to get in the pool this morning. Like the tech nerd I can be, I looked up how to make sure my Apple Watch stayed waterproof in the pool. I had to put together my backpack to carry my towel, my swim cap, my goggles (that I didn’t use because I am nearly blind without my glasses), my lock, and my outfit for post-swim escape.

As Apple is my witness, I did it! I conquered the pool. I don’t know if what I did was good or bad, but whatever it was — it was a starting place. Just another piece of data I can use to work towards my fitness goals.

So, post-bariatric surgery, body positivity can be hard. I have been completely self-conscious of the thought of being in public in a bathing suit. I have been scoping out the pool all week, since you can see the pool from the cardio theater area of the gym. I finally got it through my head that no one is going to be looking at me in the pool. Especially at 10 am on a Sunday morning. And if they do — whatever…

Getting back to where we started — my knee hurts more now than it did before swimming.  WTH? I’m going to do my next pool session walking only. I think one of the kicks tweaked out my knee.  So ice and rest while I celebrate my accomplishment today. I’m looking forward to next week too, but I will be researching to see what I can do to take even more stress off my knee.

Another piece of the puzzle

Being a rule follower, I have been diligent about exercise since my surgery. I use my Apple Watch as a gauge for activity, but up until the new year, I’d only been walking. Granted I was walking a lot, and running a bit with my Nike+ app, but as I was getting closer to goal and the weight loss was slowing down, I knew I needed to mix it up.

I’ve mentioned that I joined Kaia Fit at the beginning of the year. Three weeks in and I can feel myself getting stronger, pushing myself harder, and having fun.  The workouts can be hard and you definitely feel them afterward, but I think this push is what I need to get me the rest of the way.

And the rest of the way has gotten a little shorter. My goal changed from 120 to 130, per my primary care doctor. I went to see her to check in about my medications since I was getting close to goal. I wanted to make sure the doses were still right for my weight and see if I moved any of my lab results to come off some meds. I ended up reducing 2 meds, and coming straight off of 2 others. I still will need to take medication for my pituitary tumor and thyroid, but I’m more than ecstatic of making other improvements in my health besides weight. Weight is just one piece of the puzzle; it’s a metric like my body measurements, body fat, and other health indicators.  When I first met with my surgeon, we set 120 as a goal, which sort of seemed like it was out of my reach at the time. At 135, I feel amazing. My clothes fit, it’s so much easier to buy clothes (I need to stop!), and I’ve made some big moves in my health. I asked my PCP for her advice about goal and she thought 120 was too low, and even though 130 wouldn’t get me to a normal BMI, that’s the number we picked. I would love to get lower — 126 would make 100 pounds total lost. I’m just going to keep working my program, pushing myself, and enjoying my new life.

I am grateful to all the Kaia coaches who aren’t judging my journey (or if they are, I’m not feeling that way) and are supporting me in this next chapter. Today I did burpees without dying.  It was an awesome feeling.

I leave you with this though, to honor Martin Luther King, Jr. Seemed fitting for where I am, and where I am going.

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