Using The Stress Of Mountain Biking Accident
So I broke, three bones, tore my rotator cuff and smashed my head against a rock, mountain biking. The broken bones caused new motor patterns in how I walk / sit causing joint issues
This accident happened 1 year ago today on my 39th birthday. Interestingly, as I sat in the pile of jagged rocks barely able to breath or stay conscious, for a fleeting second I had a sense of peace. I smiled to myself knowing that I would come out of this event stronger and with lessons learned. I did not know how or when. I decided as motivation to make that happen (and help focus on health instead of pain) that I would write those lessons down and share them. I did this on Facebook and now no this forum
This post is for me, as no one asked for my advice, but I have thought about what I would write every week, for 52 weeks.. I do not have it all figured out, and I still have struggles for sure. In fact I retweaked my shoulder doing chin ups this week ;-) But I am moving in the proper direction. I have lost 20 pounds, feel stronger, look younger (I think anyway) and have come out of 5 months of brain fog (from the concussion) with better fluid intelligence and more resiliency. So here goes
1. I hate gluten. Yes hate. I was healing SLOWER than the average person and it looked like surgery time for me. I got rid of wheat completely and then healing started. Screw you bagels! Apparently, gluten â€¦â€¦..to those sensitive, confuses your immune system so it can attack your own body (i.e. joints, thyroid). It usually manifests in middle age and people just think they are getting old. I would have never known the extent of the issue had I not had this injury. There are 16,000 studies on this (read Wheat Belly or Grain Brain)
2. Before this accident I thought I ate really well, my family calls me the food police ;-). Turns out I needed WAY more fat soluble vitamins and proteins. Until I added more Grass Fed meats / butter I could not get my strength back. I start my day now with â€œBulletproof Coffeeâ€ which is an idea by Dave Asprey. Breakfast will never be the same. This is the main staple behind my weight loss. BE CAREFUL. Even though I eat like a pig (calorie wise) Back loading carbs can stress some peoples adrenals. Get your adrenals tested first or only do this short term.
3. Nutritional Ketosis is an awesome thing. I now have Ben Greenfieldâ€™s recipe for a Ketogenic Shake for breakfast number 2 and Lunch. I add berries on days I do not want to be Ketogenic
4. I finally learned how to breath! Sounds silly, I still sometimes get caught up at work or having fun and just forget to breath. Iphone apps have really change the game for me. I use Hearthmath (the best, but 100 bucks) and Azumio (5 bucks and a good place to start) To monitor my Heart Rate VARIABILITY (as opposed to just â€œHeart Rateâ€)
5. I finally learned how to sleep. Again sounds silly, and again I needed an Iphone app. I put my phone on airplane mode (so I donâ€™t fry my brain) and leave it on the bed at night. It tells me when I moved with an App called Sleep Cycle. I then track certain things (i.e. Walk, Exercise, diet etc) and notice trends that affect sleep. I can now sleep through the night like a baby â€¦â€¦â€¦.most nights
6. I realized I must move more. It is not an option. By move I mean Functional Movement. It is different than Yoga / Stretching. I do 15-30 minutes every morning. This has healed my body enough where I can actually start doing body weight movement exercise on a limited basis. I have been using the HIIT theory of exercise, which seems to be efficient and science based. Mark Sisson and Doug McGuff has a lot of good data on functional movement. Its not like I will be on the cover of Menâ€™s Health but I am moving in the proper direction I see a personal functional movement specialist now. David Gordon if you are in the MetroWest area is awesome!
7. I need to shut down my flight or fight response at night. I am a type A personality after all ;-) I sometimes do this through breathing exercises, or an Acupuncture Matt. However, I found the best way (by far) is for me to use a foam roller or a lacrosse ball and give a self message (insert joke here) Kelly Starett and Jill Miller have some great information on this. I measure my HRV before and after and the results are significant.
8. Oh yeah I said I was smarter tooâ€¦.almost forgot ;-) I have started investing in Neuro Feedback training. There is a guy right in Brookline who does this on Sundayâ€™s. Check out the Zengar website. Its not like I will be on the cover of Popular Mechanics next week, but I am moving in the right direction.
I knew this before my bike accident but it has further been reinforced. â€¦..I love B.E.S.T (Bio Energetic Synchronization Technique ) to give my body / mind and advantage when overcoming challenges. Linda Ryan in Amesbury Ma is the lady I work with. She is also awesome
I could go on about my new supplement regime, but this post is already too long. Dave Asprey, Ben Greenfield and Chris Kresser are my favorite resources on this topic.
I appreciate there are worse things that can happen but it WAS dark for me, perhaps the hardest time of my life for a solid five months. However, my belief is that 99% of what happens to you can be turned to your advantage. You cannot give up until YOU make that happen. Look hard enough and you will see, or CREATE the positive out of the negative ;-) Perhaps serendipity can also play a role if you let it. You may not know how or when at the time, but it will happen.
I am not claiming to have all the answers but I hope this inspires at least one person out there to find what is good about a seemly negative situation. â€¦..and if not thanks for listening to my babble!