Healing Parkinson’s Disease Naturally – Recovery Inspiration #81 … A midwinter sauna!

snow angelIf you’ve been following my blog for a while you will probably know that last summer, we had a sauna installed down at our lakefront! Our intention was to use it year-round and yesterday afternoon, we had the pleasure of an invigorating midwinter sauna! While the temperature outside was a frosty -12°C, inside we enjoyed a sweat-generating 45°C [120°F]! It was hot and it was awesome! We would sit inside for 10 to 12 minutes, then dash outside, wash ourselves with snow, and scramble back inside to enjoy more heat. It was rejuvenating! It was refreshing! I suspect it was healing! And it was joyous! A fantastic way to spend a frigid February afternoon!


29 comments on “Healing Parkinson’s Disease Naturally – Recovery Inspiration #81 … A midwinter sauna!

  1. Sounds wonderful Fred! Saunas are amazing!

    I’m still working out 1-3 hours a day on Joaquin’s protocols. Have seen significant improvement in the last couple months. Everything I had lost is coming back.

    I hadn’t realized that my eyes tracked slowly, which is a common problem with PD because of the left and right brain disconnect. After a month of eye tracking exercises my eyes track completely normally again. I can now drive without any fear (hadn’t realize how much slow tracking was effecting my driving). My body is also no longer jumpy and my startle is not overblown.

  2. Every day I do exercises laying on my back so I don’t turn my head to track. You want to only track with your eyes. I move my finger right and left to both edges of my vision, in circles, and up and down (without head turning) and track every moment with the eyes (no jumping ahead). At first I could only do this very slowly but over a month it slowly changed and now I can perfectly track any finger movement as quickly as I can move my finger and in any direction or movement. I feel much more connected and I believe this is a big part of what helped calm my startle reflex.

    • It’s encouraging and wonderful to hear about your progress, Lena! I too exercise a lot, 2-3 hours every day but my results are more mixed than what you report. My results are hard to track because my symptoms seem to shape-shift on a daily basis.

      I sense your routine is better thought out than mine, partly because yours is more grounded in Joaquin’s work and partly because yours is spread out over the course of the day. Mine happens typically in 2 discrete chunks, one when I get up in the morning and another session in the late afternoon. I’m in the process of spreading the exercise out over the course of a day. Also viewing every movement I make as an opportunity to exercise, i,e. to focus on form and opening of joints and muscles. Opening is particularly important for me because I believe I slid into the PD fold at least partly by closing myself off from the world. . . and my body followed that energy generated by my ‘being’, gradually reducing range and fluidity of movement.

      I’m enjoying reading about your exercise/healing routine for any insights I can glean. I look forward to your future posts. Like you, Fred and others . . . I know this condition (or these conditions) can be reversed/healed. Thank you . . . and . . .Yes!

      • Yes this is why I love talking to you and Fred and others here! This condition is reversible! So often I feel like I’m not making progress but then I’ll have a big jump forward and then a smaller jump backwards and then one forward again with improvement sticking. It is truly believing in the process, pushing forward daily, and never giving up 🙂

      • Spreading my exercises over the day works better for me as well. I don’t have a fixed routine, I just do what I feel like in the moment. This keeps it more interesting for me!

      • Yes, I agree with you Fred and Lena that spreading our exercise program throughout the day is the best approach. I’m challenged a bit with this because one of my regular routines is to visit a gym three times a week. It’s the same gym I’ve been attending now for about 25 years, so I have a lot of friends there. I do a total body strength workout on machines not free weights and do a lot of stretching, hanging from chin up bars, stretching my back over those large inflatable balls, and socializing with my friends. Given that my social life has been reduced somewhat by my symptoms the gym now represents an important social occasion for me. Also the workout still feels great.

        I want to keep that workout in place for a variety of reasons. I walk outside mostly in the redwoods or at the beach three or four times a week. I’d like to do it every day and likely will soon… That will help. At home I do qi gong, stretch, bounce, kinda dance, and do freeform calisthenics, arms swinging, leg kicks, torso twists and so on. So I’m exercising a lot like you two . . . But I’d like to spread out a little more. I feel best when I’m exercising all day with some meditation rest intervals in between… And a bit of work/writing, meditating, reading, talking with friends/loved ones, other activities like those in Fred’s spreadsheet.

        One of my other challenges spreading the exercise out is that it feels best to me once I am moving and warmed up. Getting started is the hardest part, most awkward as I feel a bit stiff and lower energy. If you have any suggestions for overcoming this hurdle to more frequent exercise of shorter duration, let me know!

        I continue to challenge myself to think of as many routine movements as possible like preparing or eating a meal, driving, making the bed, etc. as exercise because exercise to me is fun… a chance to open up and heal. I’ve never quite been able to think of work or routine movements the same way as I think of exercise. Exercise has always been my escape…or opportunity to release/recover. With these symptoms I’m starting to view every movement I make as presenting that kind of opportunity!

      • It sounds like you got a terrific program Jeff! But I can empathize with you because quite frankly if I had my way I would spend all day writing!

        In terms of kickstarting myself when I’m not feeling particularly motivated, I find throwing my arms up in the air and yelling hallelujah, really energizes me. As does putting on an uplifting song and singing and dancing to it.

      • Jeff, Your exercise sounds great also. As far as stretching it throughout the day I think maybe the best approach is bringing in little things. If I am talking to people I often sit on the floor and stretch or stretch an arm in the doorway. If I am sitting I have a bean bag by my desk that I will toss in the air a few times. If I am standing I might do some leg kicks or twist my wrists or do some passive or non passive finger movement. If I need to go down the hallway at work I might skip. Just little things that add up.

      • Great suggestions, Lena. Your advice of spreading little exercises throughout the day dovetails with my strategy of viewing every movement as an opportunity to get some exercise — a healing opportunity. To me that seems to create a road to recovery. I’ll be ordering some beanbags soon!

    • Thank you so much for sharing this Lena! It is amazingly awesome that, independently, we have developed similar daily protocols! I guess it helps that we have similar attitudes!

      Wishing you an awesome day!

      • It must mean we’re on the right track Fred! I also find spreading my exercise throughout the day and leaving some room to be spontaneous in what I do helps a lot! It becomes a part of my life instead of an obligation or chore and leaves space for joy!

  3. I’m going to start making youtube videos of some of rehab. Here’s the first one which is just a video to give folks hope 🙂 Will do more with specifics.

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