Pretty much my whole life I have been invincible. 

I was an athlete in high school and have always been strong.   That athleticism carried me through many years.  In my adult life there have been gym memberships, softball and volleyball leagues, and I even found out that it is not impossible to run five miles (1998 ish).   As a mom, I have been able to leap tall dog houses with a running start, carry in hundreds of pounds of groceries every month, and toss a baseball easily into the next cul-de-sac.

This thing about being sore after walking (just walking!) is really bothering me.  I should not be sore from walking.  After all, I exercise for a few days every three or four months when I feel guilty about sitting in front of the TV!   And when I do it has been easy for me to do 30 – 40 minutes on the bike or elliptical.  

However, because of the leg failing, I have avoided walking, unless necessary, for about two years.  My gait is off a bit and that causes me to work harder at it.  It bothers my back and hip, as I move the foot with just enough clearance to take a step.  While it is efficient to not lift your feet too high, it does cause me to trip once in a while.  The elliptical and the bike keep my feet in place, allowing for increased heart rate without lifting that right foot.

So what is my plan?  The machines are a great way to get the recommended 30 minutes a day for heart health.  I cannot get my heart rate up by walking anyway.  Weights and floor exercises will help strengthen both legs, concentrating mostly on the quadriceps (that will also help with 45 year old knees – if any of you have knee pain – strengthening the quads will lift the knee cap a bit and relieve some pain- having younger knees may help, too)  Maybe I will also throw in some mini walks.

Even if walking is hard, I am sure that I should do all I can to strengthen my body and use it.  Sitting around because I have MS is not the answer, but neither will there be any marathons to meet these goals.  I used to jump in, all pistons firing, and would end up having an exacerbation(an MS attack).  Slow and sure, strengthening day by day is the key.  I slowly have lost some strength.  I plan to slowly regain it.

I did work out today.  Did you?  =o)



  1. Billie Jo Robbins said,

    March 30, 2010 at 6:37 pm

    Ah yes…balance….figuratively and literally in this case. I have found in my life that balance in all things is important, especially living with a chronic illness. In fact…it is a constant thing. Balance between, if I do this today…I won’t be able to do that tomorrow..Balance between over activity and doing nothing…It is a hard one to master, and I don’t always get it right…but that is ok.Accepting limitations has helped me rely on the Lord and not myself…and there always seems to be a way to work around them. Your attitude is a good one Annita!…I am proud of you!

  2. elaine dannen said,

    March 31, 2010 at 8:45 am

    Your positive attitude will take you far! Keep up the good work, Annita!

  3. Rob LaBo said,

    March 31, 2010 at 6:47 pm

    It sounds like you’ve reached that point where just putting up with it isn’t going to cut it anymore. And that’s a great thing. No matter what long term gains are or aren’t possible, there’s something to be said for mentally taking charge of a situation. Facing it head on, making a plan to get the upper hand, and following through with all you’ve got is great for the soul… win or lose.

    • annitajohnson said,

      March 31, 2010 at 8:50 pm

      Thanks, Rob. Great words of encouragement!

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