What was your starting point?
My starting point was having significant issues with my right hip flexor (and psoas muscle). I was having to see a sports physiotherapist and a chiropractor routinely in order to get any kind of ability to walk any meaningful distance without considerable discomfort. My bicycling and yoga were not doing the trick.
Do you remember a specific moment that nudged you to go to class, or decide that it was finally time to make a change?
As last summer approached I knew I had two important trips coming up - the first was to the Paris air show and the second to The Open at Saint Andrews. Walking would be an important aspect and at that point in time I could maybe walk about 100 yards without having to stop to allow the pain in my hip flexor to subside. My chiropractor suggested that I look into a Pilates reformer type of class. At the same time my son had begun to attend The Studio (MDR). I had noticed how it helped him with his balance, flexibility and strength.
What were the first changes you noticed after the first few weeks of taking classes at The Studio (MDR)?
For starters, after class the pain in my hip flexor had subsided and I was able to walk without having to stop every 100 yards or so. That was huge. Having been a varsity athlete throughout high school and college (wrestling and lacrosse) and an avid skier to this day I accumulated numerous maladies that began then and continue to impact my daily life, including rotator cuff injuries to both shoulders and knee injuries all of which have required surgery, physical therapy or both.
Have you cleaned up your diet and if so, how has it changed?
After a couple of months of attending The Studio (MDR) I had noticed that I had reached a plateau. Not the least of which was as a result of my dietary habits - especially the evening or weekend before attending a class at the studio. I decided that in order to have better performance and results of class I needed to make some adjustments. I spent a week writing down what I was eating and drinking and what exercise I was doing. As a result I reduced the quantity of "junk food" that I was eating and also moderated my adult beverage consumption especially on the day preceding working out at the studio.
What’s one pose that you used to hate but love now?
Pigeon. I still hate pigeon, but it really helps with my hip flexor. And I especially hate it when I'm doing it at the Mega Stretch class and Albina (the instructor) provides a position correction that serves to deepen the stretch.
How far have you come from your starting point in both physical and mental ways?
How far have I come for my starting point? Miles! Consider that several months ago I could walk maybe 100 yards without having to stop and now I can walk for miles speaks for itself. And my level of flexibility has increased remarkably to the point that perhaps I have better flexibility than some of the class instructors. Some of my new goals as I look ahead include a bit of weight loss and losing perhaps an inch around my waist. Interestedly but not really important to me at all is I don't think I've lost a pound since I began working out at The Studio (MDR) - but about an inch around my waist. I do know that I have absolutely converted fat to muscle and while I don't have the six pack I had in my college days my abs are the best that they have been since, and that has contributed to the improvement in my hip flexors and a reduction in sporadic lower back discomfort.