Urban Poling

"Failure will never overtake me if my determination to succeed is strong enough" (Og Mandino 1923-1996)
 
Although for me dancing is the best way of keeping mind and body fit and healthy, for anyone who has just chosen to make the move from couch potato to active mover, walking is the easiest way to begin.
 
When I was discharged from hospital 3 days after major spinal surgery, I was handed a sheet  on Activity Guidelines following Spinal Surgery. The message regarding exercise that I took away from my reading  was basically that walking, including using stairs, was the only exercise activity permissible until the 6 week follow up appointment ... and that it was really important to walk, a lot.

So when you have had spine surgery, when do you stop thinking of your workouts and training as rehabilitation from a major trauma and start thinking of just getting fitter, stronger, faster and more flexible?  It may sound like splitting hairs but I think there is a philosophical difference in approach and mental attitude.

It is now the end of week 6 after spine surgery. I have achieved some major milestones - for me-  and my walking program is going well. The weather has been such that I have been able to get out for a sea wall walk almost every day and how can one not be happy and get better in such glorious surroundings. I thought I would share some of this beauty of Vancouver with you in this post.

Perhaps its because I come from a scientific background , or perhaps its just my naturally obsessive nature but I have this compulsive need to document my progress. Way back when, my friend Michael, then Executive Director at the Fraser Institute, made a point during one of our heated debates  - 'If it matters, measure it". The sentiment struck a chord with both the scientific and obsessive parts of me. Since my progression back to being strong and fit enough for serious dancing matters a lot to me - I am trying like mad to "measure it." 

Actually the post title is misleading because I have just completed week three post-surgery and  in reality I am still more in the recuperation phase than rehabilitation. Maybe this would be better titled "from Munchkin to Dancing Queen."

The picture of the left shows me all lopsided and scrunched up but still trying hard to stand with good posture 6 days after surgery. The picture on the right is to remind me that if I am patient, I will be back enjoying my dance cruises ... and even last out another 7 minute samba.