All you

Mar. 17th, 2015 10:34 am
clevermanka: default (Respirator)
[personal profile] clevermanka
When I wrapped up my February Whole30, I marveled over my body's changes to [ profile] mckitterick. He responded with "That's all you!" and it bothered me. I realized it was an odd emotional response, so I took some time to discover why a supportive comment rubbed me the wrong way. It took a couple weeks, but I figured it out. It's because it's not all me. "All me" has slogged away at this for a decade, and I have never seen such rapid or obvious improvement. Those improvements are a result of my efforts, the supplements and treatments from Dr. Jonah, and the thyroid and female hormone therapies from Dr. Khosh. This particular combination was crucial to my eventual progress. Hearing that my current success is "all me" feels like a slap in the face to the "all me" that worked so hard without success. I am not doing anything different (besides being a teensy more careful about what I eat/drink) than what I've done for years. Yes, I helped get myself here, but there's no way I could have done it by myself. Without the fortunate combination of stubbornness and financial capability, I wouldn't be experiencing this success.

Something else I discovered this weekend: Myofascial release work is about a billion times more effective than stretching for me. For yesterday's movement, I thought I'd do something fun and mix yoga with rolling out. I did my yoga warm-up and then spent about three minutes in a deep squat, holding onto a 25lb kettlebell to keep from falling backward. I rocked back and forth and side to side, allowing my calves and Achilles tendons to stretch and relax. Then I did a calf smash on the handle of the kettlebell for 3 minutes each leg. Then I went back into the squat. During the first squat, I still felt tension in my calves even at the end of three minutes. After the myofascial release? NOTHING. If it wasn't for the physical restrictions of just not being able to bend my ankles any further, I could have gone even deeper in the squat. Amazing.

I'm certainly not going to quit yoga (there are so many other benefits to regular yoga practice), but for sure I'm gonna increase my myofascial release work.

In other news, that oven-baked jerk chicken I mentioned last week wasn't all that great. I mean, it was fine, but [ profile] mckitterick and I both prefer my basic roast chicken, which takes about a third the prep time. Oh well!

Date: 2015-03-17 04:09 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
So good to know what works for you and what doesn't!

As for the "all you" comment, we all stand on the shoulders of those that help and teach us. You were the one to stick through the years of hard. You were the one to do the things that would make you better. Were I in your shoes, I think there would have been a much different result.

Date: 2015-03-17 04:21 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
So good to know what works for you and what doesn't!

Efficiency is important in health pursuits, just like everything else!

Date: 2015-03-17 04:58 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I'm glad you've found a way to do a deep squat! That's awesome.

Date: 2015-03-17 05:00 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I can't do it unassisted and I certainly wouldn't attempt it weighted, but for just hanging out doing so mobility training, it was great!

Date: 2015-03-17 05:47 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Hmm... now I really want roast chicken for dinner.

Date: 2015-03-17 06:03 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
It's definitely on the menu for next weekend.

Date: 2015-03-18 01:49 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Yay for myofascial relief stuff! Incorporating more of it sounds like a good plan - if you're going to spend the same amount of time, you might as well do the stuff that's more effective.

Date: 2015-03-18 01:18 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I'll probably just add ten minutes of rolling out on top of the yoga sessions. Not sure whether to do that before or after the warm-up.

Date: 2015-03-18 03:04 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Do you have a good suggestion where to start for myofascial work? I’m into stretching, but am curious how to really release more muscular tension. That’s what this is, right?

Date: 2015-03-18 01:34 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Yep, myofascial release work digs down in those muscles to coax the unhappiness from your fascia. It's hard to recommend a good place to start because the best place IMO is Kelly Starrett's Mobility WOD website ( Only problem is, that website is enormous and the amount of information is intimidating.

Perform Better ( has some decent basic guides (but they mostly try to sell you stuff). Surprisingly, this article on the Art of Manliness ( website has some decent pointers.

I would caution against using a lacrosse ball, PVC pipe, or other cheap alternatives to the pricey rolling out tools available. There are better cheap alternatives out there. Just this weekend I found a 3" Avengers bouncy ball at Target (the kind with glitter in it that also lights up when you bounce it hard) for three bucks. It's a perfect size and has just enough squish that it's resilient but doesn't feel like you're trying to roll yourself over a rock. I also ponied up for these yoga tune-up balls ( and I have to admit they're pretty great.

Date: 2015-03-19 03:58 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]

Have you checked out Yin yoga? It might pair well with the release work as there is a focus on the fascia. Omchantress is a big fan and clued me into it.

Date: 2015-03-19 01:22 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I haven't! Thanks for the clue!

Date: 2015-03-24 03:21 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
You're welcome! I think Yin does rename poses to their own thing on purpose because it is a different approach from traditional yoga, just a heads up if that seems weird/confusing.

Date: 2015-03-24 01:41 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Cool, thanks for the heads-up.


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