Erica's Blog

The Try Something New Everyday experiment

Today I made Lemon Zip juice

I’m in love with Whole Foods Lemon Zip juice.  It’s lemony, spicy, energizing, spicy and refreshing…and you guessed it, spicy!!

But as with most love affairs, bumps in the road inevitably arise.  They lie to you.  Or exs pop up out of nowhere. Or you discover they are the unprepared, indecisive, customizing, fast food orderer.  They spend 4 minutes reading the menu then 5 minutes ordering stuff but then 3 minutes changing their minds.  Then on top of it all, asking for all kinds of add ons.

Unpreppared, indecisive, customizing guy:  “Yeah, I’ll have a double cheeseburger, no tomato, 3 and 1/2 extra meat patties, 1 ring of onion, swiss cheese but only the slices without the holes, extra special sauce and bun toasted for 45 seconds.  And add 2 buffalo wings on the sandwich. Get me the drumstick looking wings, not the little piece of meat between 2 bones wing things.  No wait,…instead of hamburger patties, make that chicken patties but only the crispy chicken patties, extra tomatoes, no pickles, 4 rings of onions, pepper jack cheese but not the slices with the green peppers, no red peppered cheese, and 2 squirts of deli mustard but make sure the mustard is on the sandwich and not just on the wrapper and then put 2 hamburger patties on top.  Actually, change that to a salad with…”

So Whole Foods and I have found some bumps in our road in Loveville.  First, a trip to Whole Foods (WF) for me is a 40 minute drive, on a good traffic day.  Second, uh…*cough* the price could choke an artichoke.  $6.99 per 16 oz!!!  Now, as I have juiced before, I understand juicing requires ALOT of produce.  So, maybe this could be a fair price and just a perception issue: a large price on a small bottle.  Lastly, time…juice begins to lose it’s nutritional value as soon as it leaves the juicer spout.  From what I understand, after 24-48 hours that nutritious juice has just become empty calories, likening a candy bar.  If I want to incorporate this juice into my life, I would be making that trek every day.  Say I could stretch my excitement to every other day…that’s still a trip 3-4 times a week.  That $6.99 bottle of juice just shot up to $15 roughly.

Surly I could make this on my own.  I mean, WF clearly states the ingredients right on the bottle.  How hard could it be?!  But I’m still a pretty novice juicer and when I prepared to shop for the ingredients I had no idea how much of each I would need.

Hmmm…wonder if someone has already cracked this code?  On to Yahoo!  A quick search found this blog post and sure enough someone has!

I gathered the ingredients.  Peeling the lemon seemed to be the most time consuming part of the task.  I just chopped each end off the lemon, then cut a slit along the side from end to end, then peeled the lemon whole.  Easy breezy lemon not so squeezey (gotta save that juice for the Lemon Zip!).

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And the rest of the line up: 2 lbs of grapes, 2 oz of ginger and 1 big jalapeno.  I couldn’t find green grapes at the store so red grapes will have to do.

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Let the Juicing begin!!  First up, ginger!

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The next, Mr. Jalapeno!  He didn’t mix well with the ginger…the jalapeno juice just laid on top of the ginger juice.

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On to the lemons…

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Then the grapes.

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Oooo…looks like a Tequilla Sunrise!!

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I poured into a pitcher and stirred the juice up.  And poured a small sampling glass for moi!

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Verdict: Not quite WF Lemon Zip but good/drinkable.  The jalapeno lacks a bit of kick and the gentle sweetness seems to be missing.  I juiced another jalapeno and knob of ginger and added them to the mixture.  They certainly helped but I still need to experiment.

I believe the recipe will differ depending on the type of juicing machine you use.  I have an Omega VRT, a vertical central auger juicer (slow juicer).  Maybe a masticating juicer would produce better results using the recipe.  I also question the quality of my ingredients.  Maybe Walmart produce rests lower on the quality scale than WF.  Nevertheless, a good start and a good supply of juice to last me…a day.

For price comparison:

Lemons: $2
Jalapeno: $.30
Ginger: $1
Grapes: $6
Water: $.50
Total: $9.80 for approximately 70 oz

I would classify this recipes as a strong first date with a second date option.  A budding romance 🙂

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Today I cut a cantaloupe

Is it just me or when you type cantaloupe in your head you say can-ta-loo-pe to make sure you don’t forget the u?

No?
Just me?  Ok…

So, I’ve cut cantaloupe before.  I usually slice it long ways, cut in to long stripes, then trim off all the rind.

But cantaloupes are slippery and I always end up cutting off too much of the precious melon.  Surly there had to be a better way.

And surly there is.  I searched on YouTube and found this video on how to cut cantaloupe more efficiently.

I had it all wrong from the beginning.  First, cut the melon right smack dab in the middle.

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Then spoon out the seeds.

Is it just me or when you scoop out the seeds you think “brainzzzz”?

No?
Just me? Ok…

Then you have a beautiful hollowed out cantaloupe.

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Is it just me or does that look like a heart?

No?
Just me?  Ok…

Next up, turn the cantaloupe over and beginning removing the rind.

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I love this method as I could make sure to keep more of the melon on the melon!

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Once you’ve made your way around and removed the stem end, you cut the melon into slices.

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Is it just me or does that look like a beanie?

No?
Just me?
Hmm…I’m starting to wonder about you…

And viola!  In 10 minutes my ziplock bag was full of cantaloupe.

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I’m on Day 3 of Raw Week in the My Clean Eating Challenge.  When I eat raw I pretty much graze all day long.  A banana here, a peach there, a carrot cake…

Just kidding!  No carrot cake…just testing if you’re still following along.

Therefore, Cantaloope!!  It’s what’s for dinner!!  And snack!!  And second snack!!  And dessert!!  And fourth meal!!  Yum!!

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Today I made raw alfredo

I’m on Day 2 of Raw Week of My Clean Eating Challenge.  Yesterday I ate watermelon for supper.

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Today I needed to take it up an notch.

I found this raw alfredo recipe.  5 minute prep time…5 minute “cook” time…5 servings!!  Fast put together…fast procressing…and extras for tomorrow.  Sounds like my kind of recipe!

You have to understand, Day 2 of raw can be baaaaadddddd.  Headaches, body aches, nausea, low energy, brain fog, etc.  Total fun stuff!  And that’s just the stuff from the belly button up!  Today, I feel like I’m operating in slow motion and as the evening progresses my zip has zapped out.

On to this supper before I pass out…

In my research several recipes stated to soak the nuts.  Why should nuts float around in a pool before using?  Good question!  And you can find the answer here…(I’m just too tired to explain!)

So I soaked the cashews…but they didn’t get the full 6 hour “day at the beach” experience.  They had more of a skinny dip adventure.  About an hour.

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Now for the super complicated preparations: throw everything in the blender.

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That’s going to turn into an alfredo sauce?  That the sauce author states she prefers over the real thing?!  I’m skeptical…

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Blending…still not impressed.

Meanwhile, I prep the “noodles”.  Zucchini run through a handy dandy spiralizer.

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Phew…no boiling water…no stiff, hard noodles…that couldn’t have been any easier!  But I’ve never used this instrument before and didn’t quite expect this funny odd looking “noodle” from the center of the gadget.  No one tells you about that!

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Back to the sauce…

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Woah!!  When did that happen?!  That…that…that looks like alfredo sauce!!

And a wee little pinky dip reveals it TASTES like alfredo!!  Woah!!  How’d that happen?!

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Now here’s the real deal though.  That poor lady who wrote the recipe must not have had alfredo for a long, long, long time.  Fresh from the blender, while the concoction was a bit warm, yes it could pass for an alfredo sauce.  As it cooled however, the cashew sweetness took over the flavor.  I ended up dumping a tablespoon or twelve of garlic powder into my bowl to cut the sweet.  Don’t get me wrong, this sauce was surprisingly delicious…Just don’t have your taste buds ready for Olive Garden alfredo.

When I try this recipe again (which I will…it’s worthy), I’d experiment with some combination of cashews and walnuts.  I’m thinking walnuts would add the body to the sauce but eliminate so much sweetness.  I’ll also amp up the garlic…because one cannot have too much garlic.

My tummy is full.  My day is done.  Time to recharge to rock Day 3!!

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Today I started a photo blog

Today I am starting the Clean Eating Challenge.  During the first week, we only eat raw fruit and veggies.  This should prove to be interesting.  I will be documenting everything I eat on separate page.  Yah, I’m skeered but this morning smoothie was pretty good so we will just see how the rest of the week goes.  Because I know I will encounter all new things with eating raw, I’m counting these posts as my something new for this week.

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Today I registered for a Clean Eating Challenge

I could make so many funnies right now like…

Not sure why I need a clean eating challenge,  my dishes and utensils go through the dishwasher regularly.

Or

I always use a napkin.  Rarely do I have food smeared on my face.  (Exception: eating wings.  Doesn’t everyone get sauce from ear to elbow?)

Lastly…

Do they mean clean as in boxing terms?  Clean fight?  I never hit my food below the belt…

Alright…that’s out of my system.

So yes, I signed up for a 3 month clean eating challenge.

One of my friends posted about the challenge on Facebook.  I followed the link and read all the features:
11-12 week program
Weekly educational classes online
Teams and cheerleaders to support you through the program
You earn points for food choices, exercise, sleep
Top earners win prizes at the end of challenge
Average member loses 8-10% of body weight…top losers lose 20%+
They stress this is a food only program.  No pills, no shakes, they aren’t trying to sell you anything.

Sounds like fun!  I’d do about anything for points, especially if I get a prize!  And, uh…top winners lose 20+% of their body weight…sign me up!!!

I clicked on the registration link and learned it would cost $125.  At first I was shocked.  $125!  Right before Christmas season?!  But I thought about it for a bit.  If the program lasts 12 weeks, that’s about $10/week or $1.50/day.  $1.50 is about the cost of a soda.  I’d be willing to chuck my soda budget to get healthy…I mean, I’ve gotta chuck sodas anyway.

And if all I have to do is make sure to wash my food before I eat it, this will be a cinch!!!
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Today I ate at a vegetarian restaurant

I’m not a vegetarian…but I deeply respect and admire those who are.

I have a dear friend who opts to live this incredibly honorable choice.  We go out to eat on a pretty regular basis but we don’t have any solely vegetarian restaurants in our area.  As such, she’s forced to have a limited selection of menu items to choose from.

Today however, we took a small trip out of town to pick apples and made a point to go to the vegetarian restaurant in that area.

On the way she said the menu was on the restaurant’s website.  I cued up the site and studied it for the rest of the ride.  This way I’m prepared.   Otherwise, they’d be on desserts before I even chose an appetizer!

The restaurant has a huge menu and a wonderful variety.  They offer items that mimic meat dishes such as “beef” lo mein which uses soy protein to stand in for the beef.  They also offer many dishes which are just vegetables.

I wanted to spread my wings and pick something very vegetarian.  I completely ruled out the dishes that had a substitute protein.  I’m not out to be a faker like that…not that there’s anything wrong with it…I just wanted to be adventurous 🙂  But I’m a scaredy cat too so I kept gravitating to the items I knew the most about…like cheese ragoons.  And of course I could have gotten down with any of the desserts.

I narrowed it down to 2 dishes:

Hawaiian Deluxe, a dish of fresh pineapples, bell peppers, onions, tomato, celery, and soy protein nuggets
or

California Avocado Sandwich, a fresh avocado, spinach, sun-dried tomato and fresh mozzarella cheese… served with fries and a soup

But I already eliminated the nuggets and honestly the sandwich had me at avocado AND sun-dried tomatoes!!  And mozzarella cheese!!! The sandwich won out…hands down.

I opted for wonton soup and we ordered fried black pepper mushrooms appetizer. The mushrooms came with a brown garlic sauce that I could have added to dirt.  It was that good!!

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Let me just say…everything was delicious.  Like slap yo’ mama kind of delicious…not that I’m pro violence towards any mamas out there… And the sandwich…oh the sandwich…everything I imagined and more!!  Absolute heaven on a bun!!

If I could have this everyday,  I could sooo be vegetarian!!! 🙂

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Today I experienced the traction machine

Sorry about the title…I know today’s something new sounds like a torture device used in Game of Thrones.

But I assure it’s not.

I’m going to the chiropractor pretty regularly these days.  Usually my visits consist of him cracking my neck, back and butt (I no longer have any humility), get some electrical muscle stimulation and then I’m released to the world a bit more straightened out.  Today though the assistant took me to the “spine – aligner” room before my adjustment.

She explained I lay on my back on the table.  The table has mechanical rollers in it which will loosen my muscles, making my adjustment easier.  I laid on my back like instructed and she started the machine.  It felt like one of those shiatsu message pillows, only larger scale. She adjusted the roller pressure to my liking and said she’d return for me in 15 minutes.

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The rollers started in the lumbar section of my back.  I really didn’t know what to expect.  She was perfectly clear but sometimes I don’t know what to expect until I experience it and then, and only then, do I know what to expect.   Does that makes sense?

Anyhoo, my lower back is super, hyper, extremely sensitive to touch but at the same time aches to be touched to relieve the tension.  When I felt the rollers move toward my lower back, I scooted down the table for the rollers to avoid my tender spots. The rollers were working away and I just laid there enjoying it.

Ahhh….

Unfortunately, I didn’t anticipate the rollers to move so quickly and so far south. They went from my “ahhh…that feels good” spot to my “shoot me to the moon” spot.  So I shimmied down the table.  The rollers finally reached their end point and then started working their way back up my spine until it reached my neck.

Then my neck was too sensitive… so I scooted up so the machine wouldn’t hit those spots.

Once I found a good balance in positions, I just laid there in pure, utter enjoyment.  I’ve only had one massage in my life so to me this was like a massage.  I just let my mind go and enjoyed the machine kneading my back…

Until the machine reached my lower back…then I did the shimmy dance again so as to avoid being sent to outer space.

During the blissful moments, I had an ah-ha moment.  I started thinking how nice these visits are and I’m so thankful I could splurge on a luxury like this for myself.  I rarely do things, especially that cost money, for just myself.  I just kept having thoughts that this was such a nice treat and I almost had to pinch myself I was doing this…

Then guilt bought a ticket for this train of thought.  I started to feel guilty about the time it takes to come to these appointments.  Surly I could better use my time pulling weeds in my flower bed or scrubbing something.  And the expense of it all.  The gas I use.  The doctor fees which insurance won’t cover.  Guilt is like a snowball that grows with each thought until it steamrolls you.

And then it hit me…this wasn’t a luxury or a treat…this isn’t like getting a pedicure just to have pretty toesies.  This was for my health.  These visits are necessary.  Coming to a chiropractor is no different than going to a dentist for a tooth ache.  It’s just chiropractors don’t elicit anxiety attacks…unless it’s due to paper gowns which, you know, is completely justified.

And I don’t know about you but once I have an ah-ha moment, I suddenly have a hard time remembering how and why I thought the way that I did.

That’s some kind of magic machine…not only does it help align your back…it also straightens out your brain too!!!  🙂

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Today I walked 20k steps

20,267 to be exact…how you ask?  Let’s review.

I began my day reviewing my schedule.  I planned to join the knitting group which meant my tooshie was gonna be planted on a coffee shop bench for 4+ hours.  The last time I attended knit group, I failed to walk all my 10k steps that day.

So I beebopped my way outside and walked 3k steps right after getting up and before my shower.  Walking first thing in the morning invigorated me and set the tone for the rest of my day.  I think I’ll start each of my days this way!

Shortly after, my schedule changed and I could no longer go to knit group.  Life…one must remain flexible.  No worries…during the course of my day I reached 8k steps.

I returned home around 5 pm and had an idea…I live close to a beautiful park that has a 1.5 mile trail around a lake. By this time, the day’s heat was transitioning to the evening cool which makes for beautiful walking weather.  I ran around the house taking care of evening chores (feeding pups, laundry, etc) and then headed out the door.

After a short drive, I arrived at the park which seemed to be everyone’s idea.  There wasn’t a parking spot to be had!  I ended up parking just down the road. I figured that’s just more steps. As I walked into the entrance, my fitbit partied on my wrist indicating I hit 10k steps…I hadn’t even hit the trail!!

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There are all kinds of awesome peeps who come to the park.  I passed several couples with photographers taking sweet romantic pictures.  Probably engagement or weddings pictures.  This park is so picturesque!

I also passed several runners.  One guy, no shirt, ripped beyond HeMan, kept lapping me.  I told him he’s making me feel bad…although really I didn’t mind seeing him twice per lap.

Then, for some reason, I saw several ladies dressed in dresses and skirts, full makeup, “walking” the trail.  I for the life of me could not figure out why…unless they’re “shopping” for Mr. Right…if so, he’ll be lapping us shortly.

I also passed several families.  One little girl was carrying her fishing pole from the lake side.  I asked her did she catch anything.  She shook her head, poked her lower lip out, pouting and said “not a one”.  Awww!!  I also passed another family walking the trail.  Mom and Dad were in back, looking tired, sweating and dragging meanwhile their daughter, a kinky-curly blonde girl, maybe 4 years old, was having a ball leading the way, skipping and dancing.  If only you could bottle youth!!

And the pups…so many people had their dogs with them.  I’m a sucker for dogs and had to stop and pet each one.  I saw a dachshund puppy, a young spry english bulldog, several beagles and labs and a few pit bulls.  One couple was walking their two new puppies.  Well, let me better explain.  One puppy was walking the guy…the other puppy with the lady, was sitting in the middle of the trail, refusing to budge.  He was quite done with the whole leash and walking mess.

Ok…I’m a serial “hi…how ya doing?” walker.  I just can’t pass people on the trail and not say something.  We’re all out their for the same reasons…exercise, enjoying nature, battling evils such as calories or the bulge, so why not be nice to each other.  Some people respond just as energetically as I do…makes the walk very nice.  Some just give you the courtesy smile and nod of the head…totally acceptable.  Some though, act as if you don’t exist.  Alright…inside I just want to run up to them, snatch the earbuds out their ears and emphatically say “I SAID (switch tone to southern sweet)  Hi…how ya doin?” (sweet smile).  But instead I shrug and internally make up stories about them like “ut-oh…she must have had a brownie sundae for dessert last night and all the carbs made her so grumpy she’s just all hate right now…”

Twice around the trail got me to 18k steps which tickled me to no end.  Woohoo!!  That’s the most I’ve ever walked 🙂  I did run some of it…just in spurts…my chiropractor has advised me not to until my back gets straight…but I figured a little won’t hurt.  And I’m not much of a rules follower…

And here’s a picture of my cheerleaders:

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After arriving back to the house, I still had household chores to tackle.  I swear to you I do sit down… occassionally.  But doing the chores earned me another 2k steps which got me to 20k steps.

20k steps….8.61 miles walked…4k calories burned!

I synced my fitbit before bed and it gave me the message “You’re an over achiever!”  Aww shucks….how’d it know?! 🙂

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Today I was adjusted

Today I had my first chiropractic adjustment.

He opened the session with a review of my xrays.  I have a reverse curve in my neck.  A healthy neck has this curve:

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Mine curves the opposite way…here’s my xray:

My neck (2)

Yes…I smiled for my xray. : )

As for my lower back…I have a scoliosis (curvature of the spine to the right), hypercurvature of lumbar to sacrum and disc narrowing at L5-sacrum.

Sorry…to see those xrays you’ll have to take me out to dinner, a movie and margaritas.

Sounds pretty bad…the xrays look pretty bad…BUT the doc says I’m fixable…at least structurally : )

On with the adjustment…I’m kind of excited that I can have some pain relief and maybe better range of motion.  But I’m nervous cause what in the heck is the doc gonna do to me?!  However, I’m beyond the paper gown phase so really is there anything else to worry about???

He started with my lower back.  He had me lay down on my tummy on the table.  He explained he’ll put pressure on my bootie, the table is gonna loudly drop to a flat position and I should feel some relief.  Sure enough, he pushed my bootie, the table dropped loudly, my body made some horrible cracking sounds and I felt some relief.  Then, he did this hip wiggle technique where the table end swings from left to right, taking my pelvis along with it.  Next up, he reset the table, found a spot right above my area of pain, pushed down on that point on my spine which caused the table to drop again to a flat position and even more bone shivering cracking sounds.

Honestly, my responses to his techniques got a bit confused during the adjustment.  The first push, uh hell to the yes…that hurt!  (pardon my French) It was right at my most sensitive area.  So right as my body cracked, I said ouch.  Hmm….more like OOooowwwuuch.  Yeah, that’s more accurate.

And not to mention it’s awkward to have a near stranger pushing on your tushie…I responded by saying ouch.

The hip wiggle thing felt good…but I still said ouch.

The push on my upper lower back, I just anticipated the pain…so of course I said ouch.

And it kinda took me by surprise when he pressed down…Ouch.

And the table made a loud slamming noise as it dropped to a flat position…Ouch!

And the whole unknown of what will come next…Ouch!

Pretty much anything he did to me, my response was OUCH!  And just wait, cause in a moment he’s gonna call me out on it!! lol

I didn’t mean to overreact…the ouches just kept coming out of my mouth!

Next, he worked on my neck.  He asked me to lay on my back.  He then felt my neck.  He wiggled (man, there’s quite a bit of wiggling during an adjustment) my head and neck until I relaxed and then he suddenly jerked my head to the right.  ***CRACK***CRACK***CRACK***….wait for it….wait for it….OUCHHHH!

And this is where he asked me “Does it really hurt or are you just taken by surprised?”

I…could…have…died!!!  I didn’t mean to overreact…I know I’ve already said it but really I didn’t!  And I certainly don’t want to be thought one of those kind of patients.  It’s just the first one syllable word that came to mind and fell out of my mouth!  It’s my verbal defense.  My body sounds like it’s breaking into pieces (but oddly there’s great relief that follows) so the least he can let me do is to have my ouches!

Now, I really like this doc so I don’t want to portray him as anything less than awesome.  He was very nice about it.  He explained everything before he manipulated me.  And I’m sure from his point of view he just wanted to make sure he wasn’t killing me or manipulating me more than I could handle.  He has a very nice torture-table side manner.

Then, not only am I trying to relax to allow him to snap my head to the left…I now know it’s coming.  But I have to relax.  And I know I’m gonna hear my bones popping against each other (shudder)…And I have to relax.  But now I have to be aware and censor of what I say.

***CRACK***CRACK***CRACK***

Me: “MMMmmmppphhh” (muffled ouch!)

Really though, it didn’t hurt.

Next up, Electrical Muscle Stimulation (aka EMS)….OUCH!

I’m laying face down on the table again.  The assistant comes in and tapes some electrodes on my lower back.  She then turns a knob that begins sending electric pulses that cause my muscles directly under the pads to vibrate and jerk.  She adjusted it to my comfort level.  The pulses should feel almost like a massage but not too much to cause my muscles to tense.   She placed a cold pad over the electrodes and said she would be back in 10 minutes.

For 10 minutes, my muscles jumped and jerked (slightly).  And I responded by saying…..

Ahhhhh….  It did almost feel like a massage.  And just having 10 minutes of relaxation, I can only say Ahhhhhhh…..

After 10 minutes, she returned and I was able to stand up for the first time with my newly adjusted back.  I almost didn’t want to move so as to not misalign my back again.

I am a bit sore but I can already feel a wonderful change!  If you run your fingers from your skull down your neck towards your spine, you should feel a dip near your hair line.  I’ve never had that….but I do now! : )  In just 1 adjustment!!

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Today I went to the Chiropractor

A few weeks back I happened upon a Groupon special:  3 visits at the chiropractor for $59.  Sounds like a bargain and the office is pretty close.  That’s what ya call a Win Win!

Some background: Twenty years ago, (err….uh….when I was 9…yah, I’ll go with 9) I was involved in a car accident.  While driving on the interstate, I came upon some bottle neck traffic where the road went from 4 to 2 lanes.  My lane had come to a complete stop.  Another car coming down the road, in the opposite lane, saw that traffic was stopping and decided to change lanes, thinking he could get further down the road.  Well, he didn’t realized we were stopped or realized too late.  At any rate, his front end met my back end which forced my car front end to meet the back end of the car in front of me.  I became an auto sandwich.  No worries though…everyone came out just fine.  That evening, my neck hurt horribly.   I went to an urgent care clinic and they diagnosed me with “severe whiplash”.  They sent me home with muscle relaxers, pain meds, neck brace and a “get out of work” pass.  Even though I had issues with my neck, I never sought any other treatment.  Looking back, I’m not sure why…guess it never made it on my to do list.

Well, ok…I confess.  I know why.  Paper gowns.  I hate paper gowns.  And I know hate is a strong word so I reserve it for things so exasperating as paper gowns.  I heard from someone when they do xrays, you have to wear a paper gown.  What is up with paper gowns?  Who came up with paper gowns?!  Did the genius think “hmm…you’ve gotta be naked in front of your doctor.  Whatever shall we use to cover you?  Hmm…let’s use paper…cause that just covers oh so much…and durable too!”

Ok, my neck is one area the chiropractor can work some magic.  I also have the typical lower back pain which is my chief complaint.  This area seems to scream whenever I exercise.  I’m not stopping exercising so it’s just gonna have to stop hurting.

So I scheduled my appointment on Monday.  The receptionist instructed me to go online and complete all the forms.  On Tuesday I finally get around to looking for the forms.  I pulled up the page and, I kid you not, there was 7 forms to complete, each with varying number of pages in themselves.  I think it came out to 20 pages altogether.  Hmmm…by the end of completing these forms, I’ll have carpal tunnel and they’ll have another area to treat!

I arrived at my appointment today and hand in what felt like my dissertation to the receptionist.   She looked oddly at the paper and asked where did I get the forms.  Uh…the website?!  Come to find out those were the wrong forms.  Newer, shorter forms were supposed to be uploaded awhile ago.  She handed me three pages to complete in the waiting room.

After I complete the forms, she calls me back to a room to wait for the doc.  Not much later, the doctor comes in.  We exchange pleasantries and then he begins the exam.  He starts by inquiring about my injuries.  I explain all about my aches and pains, how they came about and their severity.  I loved how unrushed I felt in explaining my ailments and how he seemed to understand.  He did ask why I didn’t seek treatment sooner and well…paper gowns doc…all because of paper gowns.

Next part of the exam was the examination.  I laid down on the table on my tummy and he felt down my back.  When he got to my lumbar area (waist to hip area), I saw stars!  He continued down my spine and I saw stars, the moon and Pluto!  He then sat me up and checked my neck.  That went better…not as painful.  He said based on the exam I’m lacking a curvature in my neck, which probably explains the muscles still spasming all this time.  And my lower back…yah, that’s in pretty bad shape.  He explained he only used light touch and even that caused me to yelp.

Next up, X rays.  He gave me a gown to change into and excuses himself from the room.  Oh, thank the big beautiful heaven!!  It’s not paper!!  A real gown!!

After changing, I’m standing in a comfy cotton gown that opens in the back.  Actually, the back just stays open so I hold it closed.  I don’t want to sit down cause that’ll open the back so I stand.  And wait.  The doc said he had a few things to take care of and would be back in 10 minutes.  So what do I do while standing in a back opening gown?  Well, I marched in place to log some steps on my fitbit.  Then did calf lifts in place.  I looked at myself in the mirror…mmm…might be time to get my eyebrows did.  I checked emails, facebook and synced my fitbit…2300 steps…at 4 pm…not so good… I march in place some more.  I also snapped a picture of this cute poster.
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After a while, I sit down.  No sooner did I sit down the doc came back.  And xrays commenced.

As we wrapped up the xrays, he said he would have them back on Friday and wanted to see me that day for the findings.  He also said the manual examination may activate the pain in my problem areas.  I can attest this to be true.  My neck feels like a pager going off because of the spasms and my lower back hasn’t relaxed.  But I know these annoyances are soon going to be a thing of the past and I can persevere. : )

That’s all I know you awesome peeps.  Honestly,  I’m just still elated about the real gown!  I’ll update this post when I know more.

Oh, one last thing.  I write about my experiences for a few reasons.  Most the time to entertain you (I do hope you find the posts entertaining).  But also to educate and allow others to learn from my flub-ups.  I have flubbed-up in this area.  It should have never taken me this long to seek relief.  Paper gown fear or not…I’ve lived in silent pain for far too long.  So, if you too are putting something off and you stumbled upon this post, take it as a sign to go ahead and take care of it.  🙂  Whatever you imagine is holding you back, 87.3%* of the time is just that…imagined. * Just like that statistic 🙂

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