Friday, December 31, 2010

Self Care in 2011

As we wrap up this year, I'm thinking about how to take better care of myself in 2011. I must admit, for all of the work I'm doing in the world of natural care, I haven't been taking the best care of myself.

SO, for 2011 here are my determinations:

1. Eat well. Minimal sugar, meat, processed food & alcohol.
2. Get more sleep.
3. Continue regular, intense workouts.
4. Stretch, return to yoga.
5. Continue service in the community, like working at the marathon this past year. After all, the benefit all comes back to me!

I'm writing this publicly to keep myself honest. I'll keep you updated on my progress. What will you do for yourself in 2011?

Happy New Year!!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Don't Skip the Arms!

Before I studied and started practicing massage therapy, I often had my therapist skip my arms when I received a massage.  "What's the point?" I thought.  "Spend extra time on my feet, my back."  But the more I work with my hands and arms, the more I realize just how much they do.  Think of it: What do you use to wake up, brush your teeth, turn on the shower, make breakfast, put on your clothes, pack your bag, lock the door and head off to work?  Yes, hands, arms.  And that's not to mention your workouts, throwing a ball with friends, building snow castles, waving until your friends are out of sight...  So, be good to your hands and arms.  Have your therapist spend a little extra time on them.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Ikea Hands

As a massage therapist, I rely on my hands. As such, I pride myself in strong, adept manual dexterity. So, would assembling 2 large, complex cabinets from Ikea be the perfect project for me? Oh, no. Not at all. Although I have become fluent in Ikea instructionspeak, putting together one of those (ingenius) contraptions requires so much twisting and turning of screwdriver and other tools; my hands are a wreck today. They are actually swollen from the seven non-stop hours I spent putting together my office furniture. Granted, my office will look amazing, but I'm going to have to rest my hands before my next client. Time to dunk them in a bucket of ice.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

The Right Setting

As I'm in the process of furnishing my new office space, a trip to Ikea was in order. Perfect place for office furnishings with clean lines, inexpensive. I'm planning a space that finds the right balance between clean/professional and spa-like. The key is that my clients are comfortable and can relax. I'm going to use organic sheets, organic jojoba, and I'm bringing art from my home to put on the walls (along with my credentials, of course). I'll post pictures when I'm all set up. I take over the space Dec. 1.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

It Really Works!

One of the pleasures of massage school was learning that something actually worked. We learned that the use of cross-fiber friction could realign scar tissue. Normal, healthy muscle fibers are in line, which gives them strength. Scar tissue (from injury), on the other hand, is formed in a kind of random pattern, which leaves it less strong. This in turn leaves a potential weakness in that area of the muscle. Cross-fiber friction realigns the fibers in the original direction of the muscle fibers. Amazing, right? So, I've been using this with my injured biceps tendon. The massage in the subacute stage is helping to bring oxygen and nutrients to the area, and I'm making sure that the tendon is nice and strong! Amazing stuff.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Kettlebell & Bicep

An avid kettlebell user, I recently overdid it and found myself in pain. Lifting a glass and turning a doorknob caused my left arm (anterior, just distal to the elbow crease) increasing pain. Thinking about the movements of the kettlebell clean and snatch, I realized...biceps tendon (flexion, supination). So, some Traumeel, some cross-fiber friction of the tendon (once it calms down a little), and I should be as good as new. In the meantime, I guess it's time to get on the treadmill, eh?