Sunday, 01 August 2021

F Faith and Fitness

"Use It" or "Lose It?"

What does "use it, or lose it" mean? It means that if you don't continue to practice or use an
ability, you might lose the ability. For example, if a person doesn't exercise his or her physical
body, he or she will likely lose strength, endurance, and stamina. Similarly, if a person doesn't
practice a new skill, such as driving a car or speaking a foreign language, he or she may forget
or lose that skill.

The same is true for the ability to learn and remember new information, do well
with problem-solving, etc. Practicing, that is "using" these abilities helps improve them. Not
using them often leads to less ability. My client, Lisa Colley, does and excellent job in describing
how this phrase applied to her in a physical sense. Her words are full of wisdom! Here is her
story in her words. Take this experience she has shared with us, and let it motivate you to "use

"I'd like to testify to the Church of Health, Wellness and Taking Care of Yourself, amen- here it is.
This is a photo of my left arm- I refer to it as my Bionic Arm. I broke the arm clean away from the
ball that goes in the shoulder socket in 2008. Even though when it happened, the pain was so
intense I passed out, it was still HILARIOUS all the way to/through the ER, X-ray, orthopedic
surgery, rehab, etc. Seriously. The spaghetti spoon-looking thing is a titanium implant and
screws that put me back together to heal, and are still in my arm now. The heart is a necklace,
and the circle is a bra component. Don't get any crazy ideas! Haha!

I'm right handed, so my left arm has always been weaker. After the Stupid Human Trick that
caused me this injury, it was REALLY weak. But, I'm so lucky- I'm at about 99% usage/range of
motion, thanks to my doc. I have no limitations with it, other than it being puny. Sometimes for
fun, it'll make crunching noises when I move the full range of motion, or it likes to go numb, my
hand/fingers get ice cold/blue. It's like a party favor. But- it still works, and I am grateful. My
other option to surgery was to let it heal on it's own, which it would do, would probably take
about 3 months to do so, and I would probably never be able to raise it above shoulder level. I
was 35 years old at the time, and losing my arm/ability in that respect wasn't an option.

I broke it on a Monday evening, had surgery on Wednesday, and 2 Mondays later, I started
physical therapy. In that two weeks time, the loss of movement was terrifying. At my first PT
appointment, I had my arm relaxed at my side, and they told me to put my hand behind my
back. Not reaching up, just literally push my arm back enough to hide my hand behind my butt.
It. Wouldn't. Move. I couldn't make it do anything more than push back just a little. THAT will set
your head on fire and is an awful reality check of how FAST you can and will lose mobility!! I did
physical therapy 2x a week for 6 weeks, plus all the extra exercises at home in between. I
stayed in a sling for almost 3 months- the first two months was to heal. The last month, I only
had to wear it in public as an awareness device per say- as in, it would keep people away from
it, from hugging me hard, bumping into that side so I didn't risk any damage as it completed the
healing process. It worked, because after I stopped wearing it? That arm/side was like a magnet
for people, walls, doors, etc. Sheesh.

If you've ever done any kind of exercise, you'll notice that your strength/endurance builds fairly
quickly. If you slack off regular exercise, you'll lose that strength/endurance just as quickly.
Hence why my arm has always been a bit disadvantaged and has never reached its full
potential- I've never stayed consistent. "Use it or lose it" means that 152% in the physical
fitness/rehab realm.

Tuesday, 2/16/2016, was my 5th workout at Kellye Personal Fitness. It was leg day
(jesusmary&josephwasitever), however, there were several exercises that required me to hold
myself up off the ground/off of a bench, etc. with my hands/arms. About halfway through the
workout, I realized that my arm wasn't trembling/spasming/tingling. It didn't feel like Jello, and I
hadn't had the first panic attack of face plant potential (as where there's usually 20 panic attacks
in as many minutes). This was SUPAH-exciting and motivating for me!! And HUGE. In this short
period of time with consistent training, my arm is already starting to keep up!! WHAAAAAT?!?!!

My whole point in telling you this goes back to the "Use it or lose it" statement. Move it or lose it,
actually. The human body is an incredible machine, with so much potential- you just have to be
willing to tap into it and make it happen. Plus, everything you do right now will dictate how well
your body ages. And I don't mean staying pretty- I mean not being in chronic pain/in a
wheelchair/bedridden. Exercise in general is so vital to your overall well being- more so if you
are recovering from an illness, injury, managing a degenerative disease, etc. So- use it/move it/
love it, or you will indeed lose it....lose it quickly....and you may end up not being able to recover
any use from it if you let it go too long. I can't stress this enough from my own personal
experience and watching other people. Some people choose to work their disadvantages to
their advantage and fare so much better overall because of it. Some choose to accept their
disadvantages as disabilities, and it whittles away at their overall physical abilities, not to
mention what it does to them mentally. It's a slippery slope- climb it or slide down it- you'll be so
much better off for attempting the climb. Do so while you have a chance and a choice- trust me
on this!"