Many of you may have seen me cruising through town with or without my three kids in tow. Well, I would like to share my story how this all started in October with a back injury ......
I went on holiday and ironically strained my back on our second day. You may have experienced an injury like this; I felt a sudden ZING and my back seized up after pulling a lounge chair through the sand. Earlier I had done some yoga and went for a big swim so I was very surprised to find myself unable to move! I was stuck in bed for two days in Tonga. At least it was a beautiful place for some much needed relaxing and a busy year -even if my back was sore.!
I was suffering from what felt like a disc injury in my lumbar spine. It was impossible to move alone or with my husband's assistance. I blacked out twice trying to move to the bed! Thankfully after lying still and taking some Chinese herbs the pain began to slowly subside. I was very happy to be able to go for a swim and walk two days later. Each day the pain subsided a little more; by the end of the 8 days I felt much improved. I was looking forward to getting home for some gentle chiro adjustments with my favourite Wellington Chiropractor Camille Andre.
Unfortunately sitting on the plane on the way back home really aggravated my back. I knew my back was not fully healed but this was a true reminder that pain can settle down only to come back again if your alignment is not balanced. When I returned home, my pain greatly diminished with a few sessions of Applied Kinesiology Chiropractic. However, each time I sat in the car the pain would come back with a vengeance.
I decided then and there I would not drive the car again! I got out of the car and decided to ride my bike up the hill hoping to free up my tweaked back . It certainly helped to lengthen my tight hips and back muscles which reduced my pain.
My husband had been suggesting we live by bike for many years and I told him now is the time so I purchased an electric bike that can easily accommodate the family.
This bike is powerful enough to let me ride up Hungerford Rd with my 8 year old on the back. It is awesome! For two months I have ridden this bike everyday. We go to the kids gymnastic lessons in Owhiro Bay, swimming at Hataitai beach, swim lessons in Berhampore and to town for shopping and fun. Every day is an adventure. Running family errands becomes fun as we stop at the cafes or playgrounds along the way. As far as the kids are concerned we are just having fun family time.
It takes me 15 minutes to get to work by car or bike: There is no parking the car so I am door to door which saves me time. I get to yoga quicker as I can park right outside and I can ride right past the 4pm traffic! I have ridden in the rain and strong winds and it's actually quite refreshing. Ironically my husband has made this point several times but I thought he was just crazy! Five years ago we began talking about going car-less, as my husband as always lived by bike (until he met me and my car)! HIs mother didn't use a car either. In fact they had biking holidays all over New Zealand from the tip of the North Island to the bottom of the South Island. I wasn't ready then as I did not want to give up my comforts with two small kids. The the funny thing is: I did not realise how much FUN I would have riding around! We are selling the car since it is collecting dust and we will be going on a biking holiday to the Marlborough Sounds in January.
I feel happier, freer, less stressed and my back pain is gone! Along with Chiropractic care, riding actually made my back feel better. I think it is important that you have an upright bike that fits your body well. I feel cycling helps to stretch out the gluts and back muscles. I also enjoy Yin Yoga at Hot Yoga which I think is a great restorative yoga for healthy muscles and connective tissue.
So hop on your bike this Summer. It has done wonders for my family and me!!!