Friday, September 12, 2014

Life and Exercising after a Stroke Part 2

Wednesday came and went with a flurry of emails with Susan and Darren of Stroke Class with Susan, but as usual with my Wednesdays, I was MIA for the live class. Hump Day for me means I'm humping it all over the place. Yes, I realize it's now Friday.

No nurse or aide from hospice comes which is a blessing and a curse. My husband's care is all up to me, but I can run around the house in my panties if I want to. He's not too demanding. It's just a fact of my life. But this particular Wednesday, I had OT, an appointment with my brace maker (more on this in a moment), a stroke group meeting, and my regular knitting/spinning group meeting. All this, and the first live stroke Class with Susan too. Something had to give. It wold take my energy supply for three days to do all of it.

Luckily/unluckily the brace maker's office gal called and said that my brace wouldn't be ready until the 18th. Good because it lightened my schedule. Bad because I have to keep hobbling around in my ill fitting, inadequate AFO for a week longer. Another week of walking only when absolutely necessary to prevent my foot ulcer from getting worse and splitting open again. You have no idea how frustrating this is when it's up to you to do it all.  But looking at it this way, I've spent almost a year fighting the insurance company for approval - a week is nothing. Yeah, that sounds better.

I went to OT and my therapist discussed reducing my time from three times a week to two. Eliminating Wednesday sessions, would I mind? Wohooo! Another Wednesday mayhem item gone. The reduced time is not because I don't need it, but because of session limits with my insurance.

I made the stroke group meeting but skipped out on knitting/spinning group. I just didn't have the strength or an ounce of energy to spare.

So when did I have time to exercise with Susan? Thursday afternoon. It was rainy and too humid to be outside. Think about being in a sauna wrapped in a wet quilt and you get a pretty good idea of what it was like outside, but my plants loved it. I clicked on the link and watched the video all the way through and then did it with her. I loved the option to stop the video to catch up or take a break when I needed to. One thing I'm going to have to do is get a regular speaker for my computer. Exercises and headphones do not play well together.

While doing the workout with Susan, I found out just how out of shape I am. I was totally pitiful and it's not a high powered workout either. I found after the thirty minute mark, I was pausing the video more often. It's actually made fun with music playing in the background just like a regular exercise class. It made me feel semi normal. Great job Susan, Darren, and Luc!

I would suggest a shorter microphone to reduce Susan's breathing noises. One that came to her cheek instead of the one that looked like it could wrap halfway around her face. It's an old DJ trick. Did you know I was once a radio DJ? I was the overnight voice of a Virginia station while I attended nursing school. Now I can't talk worth a hoot, but I still have my FCC broadcasting license...just in case. Boy, the things we keep.

While there were some things I could not do, I did the best I could. Remember I have very limited extension of my elbow, and nothing in the wrist and fingers. To place my affected fingers so they'll hold my kneecap meant first stretching them out  to hold my knee. This is where I was really glad for the stop/start button. Exercising without my AFO was interesting especially when my Clonus kicked in at a couple points with the ankle movements...another stop/start button thing.

This morning the tell tale signs of "working out" were present. Muscles not used in a while were still exhausted, but then I'm not your normal stroke survivor either with dosing my husband with morphine every two hours around the clock. Not enough time sleeping to repair stretched muscles, but like I said it's me and my lifestyle. Then again, I can see difficulties ahead when my Botox wears off and the spasticity begins again. But those are problems for another day.

I do plan on continuing with the class during the trial. I would love to have a DVD of the class to play it in a larger room than my office. Or if it were downloadable would be even better. I can see great benefit to these classes if nothing less than getting this old lady off her duff and making round a less desirable shape.

So how can you join in the fun?

Read all about it on their website:
They are on Facebook too at:
Maybe Luc (the internet savvy one of the trio) can start up on twitter and Instagram soon hint,hint.
Next live workout is September 17, 2014.

Sounds like an infomercial doesn't it?Not really. I just want to pass on a good thing by some great people trying to help us. I receive nothing from this except a good work out with high hopes of improving me for me.

Nothing is impossible with determination.


  1. So great that you share this experience so others can join in. Best of luck with your challenges, they make you stronger. You're not average anything, you are AMAZING.

  2. Sorry it kicked your butt the first day, but keep at it.
    Didn't know you were once a DJ. A woman of many talents!

  3. Good for you for trying! That's got to be the start of getting better. I think most of us get hung up on starting at all.


  4. I just did it again. Hopefully I won't be so sore tomorrow.


I love to hear from you! Agree, Disagree, matter. Even if it's to say you were here.