Now that I’m not so free and easy with bending over, I find myself squatting and kneeling down a lot. It’s the only way to get closer to the ground without triggering the vertigo. (I also sit in chairs more often, for example to chop veggies for soup or to clean the rodents’ cage.) I have been thankful for my strong legs and my ability to kneel down and get back up; I know not everyone is so mobile. Even though this has been on my mind, I never stopped to consider the benefits of the spin class I’ve been attending. I’ve been focused on getting familiar with the movement of my body on a bike, with hopes that I’ll be comfortable enough to ride outdoors next spring. (I know a stationary bike isn’t the same feeling as a road bike, but it’s the only thing I can do to work toward that goal right now.)

So I was genuinely surprised in yoga class this past week. After a string of very-modified classes, I finally had a “good” class–one where I could approximate downward-facing dog and do most of the class with minor modifications. (Of course, I skipped the forearm stand. How I wish I could have done it!) During class I was amazed at how easy it was for me to hold a lunge pose with my front knee bent at 90 degrees. I was much more stable than in the past, and I hardly tired even though our instructor has us stay in that position for longer than most. Then it dawned on me: my quads were stronger because of the spin classes. Yay and whoppee!

An update: I have treated the vertigo this week with daily Epley’s, and I have stayed up on two pillows. (Looks like that is going to be a permanent thing. Thankfully, we recently bought a new mattress, and sleeping this way is no longer painful.) It paid off–today is my first “green” day (no symptoms, as opposed to yellow and red days) in a very long time. I was able to move my head around while rock climbing and am nearly back to my former level of skill. That sounds silly as I write it, but it’s true that I’ve been climbing without looking around much at the holds. And no overhangs, of course. I climb with a group of women who climb 5.10 and 5.11’s, so I am definitely the odd girl out at this point. They have been very kind and encouraging as I’ve been working my way back up. I am feeling very positive at this point.

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