I am finally not in any pain

pain

I have been going to Jacobo Physical Therapy 3 days a week for a few weeks and I can’t believe it but, I am not in any pain.  I can’t say that this is a permanent thing, because I do occasionally feel pain, but it’s not a constant nagging in my spine like it normally is 24 hours a day.

A few years ago I was diagnosed with degenerative disc disease, but recently in the last month I found out from x-rays that I also have scoliosis.  I was wondering why I was in constant agony, now I know why.  My doctor sent me to physical therapy and I go there three days a week.  They give me certain exercises I can do for 30 minutes, then someone comes in and gives me a soft tissue massage.

Dr. Jacobo told me that my insurance will only cover so many visits per year, so once I’m done with physical therapy, I’m on my own.  She said they will see me three days next week, but after that I can come once a week.  I am not sure if my insurance will pay for once a week, but I hope they do.

weider total body works 5000She told me that they can give me a printout of all of my exercises in case I forget what they are so that I can do them at home.  I have a Weider Total Body Works 5000 which I can use to help me.  Some of the exercises I do use weights, so that’s where my home gym will come in.  Not all of the exercises will require using the gym, so I will have to remember them and try to make it a daily ritual to keep my back pain down to an absolute minimum, if that is possible.

I’m wondering if I should set up my video camera so I can do all of the exercises so if I ever forget how to do them, I can always refer to the tape, or well, DVD since it’s a DVD Camcorder.  I think that would be a good idea because I know I will forget if I don’t make it a habit.

I bought that Weider Total Body Works 5000 in 2005 from Wal-mart’s website for $99.  Now they are $149 at Wal-Mart and $159 at Target.  It’s $400 and $1000 on Amazon, which is amazing that they would sell it for that much money since you can buy it much cheaper at Wally World and Target.

My gym is outside in our patio which makes it a miserable experience because it’s way too hot out there to use it, but there isn’t any room for it inside the house.  I’m pretty sure I can deal with using it out there for half an hour per day if it will help me with my pain levels.  Although I can’t say that I will get my massages, but I guess I will just have to deal without those lol.

The good thing about these exercises is that they taught me how to stretch my legs while laying down when I start and when I finish, so I can use that knowledge for when I ride my bike.  It’s always a good idea to stretch before and after a bike ride.

I really hope my pain levels aren’t as high as they used to be without going to physical therapy 3 days a week.  If you have ever suffered from back pain, then you know what that constant nagging pain feels like, so you understand.  Most people who don’t have any back pain never understand.  In fact, some people feel that because they don’t have that same or any pain that they don’t think we are in any pain at all.  It’s a “if I’m not in pain, then you aren’t in any pain either” type of thing I guess.

Pain meds don’t always help me.  I’ve taken Ibuprofen, Vicodin, muscle relaxers, Tylenol, Advil etc.  Nothing works.  Although when I broke my arm I was constantly medicating myself with Vicodin which took ALL my pain away.  I think that was the best vacation from pain I’ve been on in a long time.  When my arm healed and I stopped taking the Vicodin, the back pain returned.  I have taken more Vicodin since then, but it doesn’t do any good.

I think I spoke too soon because I’m getting shooting pain in the middle of my spine.  YIKES!  Well, let’s hope that it doesn’t get worse.  I think I will take something for it now.  I bought some generic “Pain Relief PM” from Dollar General for $1 to help with the pain and to help me sleep.  I really hope that doing those exercises at home will help because I don’t think I can take being in as much pain as I was before going to Jacobo Physical Therapy.  That really is no way to live.

My Shoulder Exercises

Yesterday I tried to find the poster in PDF format of the exercise guide for my Weider Total Body Works 5000 home gym but I couldn’t find it anywhere.  I have the poster that came with it but it’s washed out in the sun.  I took several pictures of the poster so that I could combine them all using the panorama thing in Adobe Photoshop Elements 3.

The pictures that I took suck because I took them in my bedroom and it’s really dark in here so the white of the poster looks dark yellow.  I would like to do it all over again outside so the white shows up as white instead of as dark yellow.

The point of me doing that was so that I could crop certain exercises out and put them all side by side and print onto a sheet of 4×6 photo paper so that I can carry out there with me so I can hold it up and look at it easier.

So I picked out 8 exercises that I could do for my shoulder.  I picked out all the ones that are for the rear part of the shoulder since that’s where my pain is.  Although yesterday the pain moved to the front, well it’s back where it belongs, in the back of my shoulder.  So I’m going to focus on working that muscle to fix the problem.

Even though it sucks really bad, here are the exercises that I chose.  You can click it to see it full size.  It looks horrible but it looks better on 4×6 paper.  When I get time before my Stargate shows come on I’m going to go out there and try it again so I get it right.  Then at least I’d be able to share it with the world since nobody else has it for download.  Oh, it looks white with specks because I used the replace color option in Adobe Photoshop Elements 3 to change the dark yellow with white but I couldn’t get all of those colors out of there so I just left it for now.  I will fix it.

rear shoulder exercises

As promised here is the guide.

Home Gym

weiderI’ve said before that I’m going to do it but then I wuss out because of my shoulder pain but I really need to do it for my shoulder pain.  I need to bring my Weider Total Body Works 5000 home gym into the patio from the back yard and start using it.

I think that if I work that muscle, the shoulder muscle that hurts and my back muscles, that I might be able to strengthen it up.

I’ve had this shoulder pain for almost a month now and it seems like it’s moving from my shoulder to my neck and also down my left arm as well as being in my shoulder.  So I think that the only way I’m going to fix this is by exercising those muscles.

When I was going to the Chiropractors office in 2005 they would give me a massage, I would lay on a hot water bed with jets shooting at my back, they would put these electric things on my back that would shoot electricity into the muscle then the doctor would adjust my back and then they would send me over to their gym room where I would use the weight machine and do the exercises that they told me to do.  I still have the paper with all the exercises too.

They had me pull on the weight cable then hold for about 5 or 10 seconds or whatever, I forgot.  Then I would do it again, so about maybe 10 times for 5-10 seconds.  So I believe that this worked so I think I should do the same.

I’m giving myself shiatsu massages, vibrating massages, putting cold then heat on my shoulder.  I can’t adjust myself but I do try to crack my back when I can.  I don’t have a little twin sized water bed with heat and jets and I don’t have one of those things that you put on your muscle then push the button to electronically stimulate the muscles by zapping it (as seen on Jackass the movie where they put it on their balls lol) but I do have a home gym and it’s about time I use it.

I really want this pain to go away.  It’s been almost a month and I haven’t been on my bike in that amount of time.  I’m told to just go to the Chiropractors office but how am I going to get there?  Bus then have to walk the rest of the way?  Every step I take causes pain in my shoulder.  In 2005 I was going 3 days a week, that’s $3 a week in bus fair that I just can’t spare.  I would ride my bicycle but then I’d be paranoid that it’s going to get stolen the whole time cause you are in there for 2-3 hours at least.

So my best alternative is to just suffer and use the options I have available to me I guess.  Maybe if I had a person to drive me then it would be easier but I don’t.  We have a perfectly good SUV in the driveway that I could get there with but… don’t know how to drive and even if I did, it’s gonna cost me a lot more than $3 a week in gas.

Weider Total Body Works 5000

I bought this home gym from the Wal-Mart website a couple of years ago called the Weider Total Body Works 5000 and at the time it was $99.  I forgot how much the shipping was though.  But I just went to do a search on that particular brand that I have to see if there was any new information such as blogs or instructional videos or whatever to give me more of an insight into this gym which houses more dust and spider webs that it should and I find that they dramatically raised the price to $174.  It looks like I bought it just in the nick of time.

My friend Sue calls it my Weider Total Towel Rack 5000 lol.  My aunt Betty has a treadmill in her living room and when I was there the last time it was folded it and it actually did have towels hanging on it lol.  I had to joke with her about that.

Back Problems

I don’t know what’s going on with me lately but it seems that since I got that new bicycle seat I’ve had nothing but back problems.  It could be that I still don’t have it adjusted right, I don’t know for sure.  I’m sitting back in my desk chair with the vibrate turned on the upper back selection and it does help some.  Sometimes I go sit in the shiatsu massage chair and that just hurts.  I have to sit funny for it to even get to my shoulders.

What happened is a few mornings ago I wasn’t wearing my bipap machine mask because sometimes I can’t breathe with it on so I have to go without for 1 night.  So when I sleep without it I sleep on my stomach and I sleep so weird that it puts a crick in my neck.  So I can’t put all the blame on this new seat but it doesn’t help my back either.

Yesterday I went on my morning bike ride despite the bad neck/shoulder pain but this morning I decided I was in too much pain to go out so I stayed home.

I’m really thinking about going to the chiropractor again because I get massages 3 days a week and they make me use their gym which helps with my weight loss lol.  The last time I went there I think I lost 10lbs in 1 month from using their gym doing the machine exercises as well as the ball exercises.  Maybe that will help me out some then I can learn what exercises I can do at home on my home gym so I will start using that again.

The only issue right now is that I’m broke.  I mean totally broke.  I have $1.75 available in the bank lol.  So I can’t take the bus there and they moved to across the street from the DMV which is a very long bus ride.  I wouldn’t want to take my bike because well, I’m going there because of my bike and I don’t have the proper locks for my bike yet until I get money.  So I’m kind of stuck until I get money.

I hope the pain will go away soon because I don’t have any pain pills or the money for them.  I do have a couple ibuprofens still for my carpel tunnel syndrome and I’m seeing that doctor on Friday so hopefully he will renew that for me.

Testosterone Overdose

I don’t know what’s going on but all of a sudden it’s almost like I got an overdose of testosterone from all the bike riding I’ve been doing.  It’s like all this energy is inside me now.

That rear bike rack that I got for my birthday wasn’t the right size but I figured out how to make it the right size by rigging it to the seat and using old brakes to screw it into the frame at the bottom.  Today I went to the store and could hear it creaking where I attached it to the seat post so I drilled a hole into the seat post and put a screw in there to make it more stable.

bikescrewpost

I also finally thought of a way to get the bar on my home gym back on.  When I got it (it’s a Weider Total Body Works 5000) that little plastic thing at the bottom (you see it in the picture from that link) which holds the bungee cords, the screws snapped off of it, when?  I have no idea.  It was loose in the box.  I didn’t send it back because I bought it from Wal*mart’s website and it was shipped to me.  So I didn’t want to pay for shipping just to get that replaced so I just left it.

So I was sitting here and I got a brain storm.  What if I use the Dremel tool to cut into the screws where they snapped off at the bar so that I can use a flat head screwdriver to unscrew them and take them out and finally get that plastic bungee cord holder back into place.  So I did and it worked.  OMG!!!  Finally!  I’ve had that thing for a couple of years now and it always put a bad taste in my mouth that I couldn’t use those bungee cords to add more resistance because I didn’t want to have to keep raising and lowering the darn thing, it’s too heavy to have to do that.  It would be easier to use the bungees which is why they put them in there in the first place.

So now I can.  Boy, I feel so butch these days lol.