Just a reminder to never give up.
From video description: “Arthur Boorman was a disabled veteran of the Gulf War for 15 years, and was told by his doctors that he would never be able to walk on his own, ever again.”
An interview I heard the other day on Fresh Air on NPR caught my attention.
It was about, among other things, whether you should stretch before exercising:
Research now suggests that stretching before a workout isn’t necessarily a good thing, because it causes the brain to think you’re about to tear those muscles, says Reynolds. “When you stretch and hold a pose, the brain thinks you are about to damage yourself and it then sends out nerve impulses that actually tighten the muscles,” she explains. “… The result is, you’re less ready for activity, not more ready for activity.”
I’ve made a lot of awkward poses in the gym for nothing, apparently …
The view was incredible — tiny trees, a flock of birds flying nearby and tiny houses next to a gorgeous lake with tiny boats driving along.
I got caught up in all of it, and for a moment, I forgot that I was attached to a rope and dangling 50 feet in the air.
I was reminded after I shifted my body weight and found myself whacking into a rock wall.
This past weekend, I went top-rope climbing outdoors for the time. And now that I can feel my arms again, I will tell you about it.
A friend with significantly more climbing experience invited me to go climbing so he could teach me some basic techniques. I’ve climbed indoors a few times, but I’m very much a beginner.
My friend picked a rock face on Mount Scott at the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge called “High Anxiety.” I would say, for me, the name was appropriate. As I rappelled down, I was sweating bullets. I kept peeking down and thinking, “That’s. So. Far.”
However, some of my stress was lifted before we started down. My climbing partner for the day spent about 45 minutes to an hour teaching me about safety. This is definitely something I will look for when picking future climbing partners. When you go climbing, you are placing your safety in your own hands. It’s important to climb with people who understand your experience level and are willing to teach you something you don’t understand.
After I made it to the bottom, I felt kind of like these guys. Once my climbing partner made it down, we took a moment to go over more safety and climbing techniques.
I climbed up the rock face three times, each time making it a little higher. The first two times I climbed, I wore my Vibram FiveFingers KomodoSports. I had an OK time climbing with them, but it was more difficult to balance on small ledges. It was difficult to get all my toes to agree that we were all going to focus on staying in that one small area — and not wiggle.
(As a note, I really love my Vibrams and wear them when I’m out and about and also when I’m running, hiking or doing anything else active. So this is really my only critique of them, and I have had them since December)
The third time I went up, I put on my friend’s climbing shoes because we thankfully wear the same size. Climbing shoes allow you to just have one big rubber toe that you can use to maneuver. This was a lot easier, considering you’re placing your feet on small ledges in order to support yourself. Having climbing shoes on was likely one of the reasons I made it higher the third time I went up. And I also think it was because I was feeling much braver. My heart had slowed down some, and I felt like I wasn’t a complete idiot in regards to climbing.
Now that I’ve had my first taste of outdoor climbing, I’m ready to learn more. Going to Rocktown Climbing Gym in Oklahoma City is high on my to-do list. Well, that and going back to the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge as soon as possible.
I hope you will take a moment to share your first-time climbing experiences and also share with other readers any tips you might have about climbing in Oklahoma.
Thanks to discount services like Groupon, Living Social and Wimgo Deals, I have tried new restaurants, attended events I didn’t know about — and wasted $20 on something I thought I would be really into.
For some folks, though — i.e. the 693,000 uninsured Oklahomans — these discount websites can mean access to health care services that they might not normally have access to.
This thought crossed my mind after I saw today’s Wingo Deal for a heart scan for $17. (Disclaimer: The same company that owns The Oklahoman also owns Wimgo)
There are some hospitals in Oklahoma City that offer heart scans for $50. The Wimgo Deal claims the services you get for $17 are worth $495.
Contact lenses and dental implants have also been featured discounts. I went without eye insurance for about a year. I wear contacts and glasses, and I ended up using a coupon in the back of a phone book to get new contact lenses.
An Associated Press story about this same topic quotes a small business owner who canceled his health insurance plan because of high premiums:
NEW YORK — The last time Mark Stella went to the dentist he didn’t need an insurance card. Instead, he pulled out a Groupon.
Stella, a small business owner, canceled his health insurance plan more than three years ago when his premium rose to more than $400 a month. He considered himself healthy and decided that he was wasting money on something that he rarely used.
So when a deal popped up on daily deals site Groupon for a teeth cleaning, exam and an X-ray at a nearby dentist, Stella, 55, bought the deal — which the company calls a “Groupon” — for himself and another for his daughter. He paid $39 for each, $151 below what the dentist normally charges.
This discussion obviously leads to a larger conversation about the price of health care in America. The Washington Post has an interesting interactive graphic on its website that compares U.S. health care costs to what people pay in France, Germany, Spain and Switzerland and also in Argentina, Canada, Chile and India. You should take a look at it — and let me know if you have used any of these discount sites for something health related.
Every summer, I listen to my mother rave about fresh tomatoes from my family’s garden. She always makes these bacon and tomato sandwiches that I seriously took for granted when I lived at home.
This summer, I plan to attempt to have a garden in my little backyard.
If my garden fails, I have a backup plan — farmers’ markets. Actually, I’m going to go to farmers’ markets anyway. It’s one of those things I keep saying I’m going to do, so now you can be here to hold me accountable.
There are a few farmer’s markets in Oklahoma City, and this list provides you with most of the markets in Oklahoma.
On Saturday, you can go to the OSU-OKC Farmer’s Market at the OSU-OKC Horticulture Pavilion at 400 N. Portland Ave.
The state health department has some guidelines for handling and storing fresh fruits and vegetables. Follow those, and you will be able to have safe, delicious bacon and tomato sandwiches all summer long.
I’m going to make a confession — I don’t have a tornado/severe weather safety kit in my home. Now that we’re in tornado season, I probably should.
When severe weather struck a few weeks ago, I found myself surprised at how unprepared I was. During the storms, one friend told me she went to bed and put a helmet on her nightstand. “Helmet?” I thought.
The CDC issued a news release today about the topic of helmets and whether you should grab one during storms.
Here’s the release:
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention continues to recommend, as its first recommendation, that people in the path of a tornado find a shelter or a tornado-safe room. The safest place in the home is the interior part of a basement. If possible, get under something sturdy such as a heavy table or workbench. If outdoors, lie down in a gully or ditch.
We understand that people who have seen the tragedy that tornadoes can impose are looking for any useful and effective ways to protect themselves. We don’t have research on the effectiveness of helmet use to prevent head injuries during a tornado, but we do know that head injuries are common causes of death during tornadoes, and we have long made the recommendation that people try to protect their heads. Individuals may decide to use helmets to protect their heads. However, because the time to react may be very short, people who choose to use helmets should know where they are and have them readily accessible. Looking for a helmet in the few seconds before a tornado hits may delay you getting safely to shelter. For those who choose to use helmets, these helmets should not be considered an alternative to seeking appropriate shelter. Rather, helmets should be considered just one part of their overall home tornado preparedness kit to avoid any delay.
CDC continues to promote protective measures for use during natural disasters including tornadoes. For more detailed information, go to http://emergency.cdc.gov/disasters/tornadoes/during.asp.
And now I’m curious — What do you grab when storms hit? Let me know.
Oklahoma City is the eighth most challenging place in the U.S. to live with asthma, according to this recent report.
This news probably doesn’t surprise anyone in the OKC metro who suffers from asthma.
I am an allergy sufferer and currently have some maximum strength cold and sinus medicine next to my computer. And thanks to spring allergies, I sound somewhat like Barry White. I guess I should use this moment as an opportunity — Karaoke, anyone?