will you get the new covid 19 vaccine?

Unless you live under a rock you know we are in a Pandemic. There is also two new vaccines that are becoming available to the public to help combat Covid 19. Before I go any further I am not telling anyone to take, or not take the vaccine. What I am suggesting is that you learn as much as you can before you make a decision to, or not to, take it and discuss with your doctor. If you do not have a doctor ask questions at the vaccine site before you get it. If you have any kind of a reaction after the vaccine be sure to report it to the place you received the vaccine, and be sure to get the second dose.

I was shocked at work when several of my coworkers, like most of them, are saying they are refusing the new Pfizer vaccine that our place of business is offering us in a week and a half. Their reasoning made no sense to me and did not have any sound reasoning other than fear I guess. I have CKD, stage 3, and I also have allergies with a pretty severe allergy to Penicillin. I of course will tell them that when I get the vaccine. I will also request to be monitored for 30 minutes after, which my husband can technically do as he is a first responder, and I will also take a Benadryl. Since I am a nurse, and my husband is a first responder our risk of getting Covid may be higher than others. Also, since I already only have 1 good kidney and Covid attacks the kidneys, not getting the vaccine is a bigger risk in my opinion. From the information I can find I don’t find that any CKD, dialysis or kidney transplant patients were part of any of the clinical trials. Be sure and talk to your doctor about getting the vaccine and consider getting it at the doctor’s office or somewhere where there is lifesaving equipment should it be needed. If I get Covid and it kills my other kidney that means death, or dialysis for the rest of my life. I am not OK with that. So, yes I am taking the vaccine. My husband already got his first dose of the Moderna vaccine. My job is doing Pfizer. Now I mention that because you may be wondering what is in the vaccine that may cause a reaction. Below, you will find a link that tells you everything in each vaccine, it is the image under my title image. It is a pretty short list, however, the Pfizer vaccine does list some phosphates which of course are limited intake with kidney disease. Also these two new vaccines use new technology that does not give you a live vaccine, but rather a piece of the genetic code which causes the body to respond. These two are the only two options I will accept. I do not want the ones that are made the old way. But, they aren’t even ready yet, so I am jumping the gun.

Why get the vaccine? Well for one thing if we don’t reach herd immunity via vaccine that means a lot more people will have to become ill, and possibly die by getting the disease and getting natural immunity. We will have to wear masks forever, social distance and it will effect the economy for sure, until we reach herd immunity, either via vaccine or sickness. I am quite tired of life not being normal. I assume most people are. I don’t mind wearing a mask, however, and I think this should just be normal practice during the flu season. We have had no cases of normal Flu at my job, and I contribute that to mask wearing, and proper sanitizing of commonly touched items.

That does not mean I don’t have concerns. I have already stated some of them. There is also the concern of the possible long term effects of which we have no way of knowing yet, from the vaccine. However, I do know the long term effects of Covid on my body which could possibly be death or dialysis for the rest of my life.


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My Dry eyes, ckd and how i deal with it

Happy Sunday. My Buffalo Bills won yesterday. It has been 25 years since they won a playoff game. So exciting! Anyway, one of the reasons I started this blog is because I have had symptoms of Kidney Disease but didn’t know it, until my left kidney completely failed 4 years ago. The doctors have still not given me a reason for my kidney issue, other than it is probably genetic, as I do not have High Blood Pressure or Diabetes. I can tell you lifestyle probably played a big part, as I did not know I had possible Kidney Disease.

I have had dry eyes for as long as I can remember. When I got my first job at 18, as soon as I had vision insurance I went to have my eyes examined. I was told I had Astigmatism and was given glasses that absolutely did not help my vision at all, and I quickly did not wear them. I have also suffered from headaches for most of my life. Either of these symptoms can be a warning sign for Kidney Disease, but was overlooked or even ignored. I have talked before about foamy bubbly urine for many years as well. This was often overlooked as being dehydrated. When you don’t have health insurance getting a diagnosis is difficult, but even with insurance I didn’t get a diagnosis. I am not faulting anyone, the point is only to raise awareness so others can seek information, knowledge and proper treatment for any symptoms they may be experiencing before their kidney fails. It is not just dry, gritty eyes that I experience, but also fluctuating vision where some days it is fine and others it is bad. This has never been explained. I see an eye doctor every other year, and am told I have normal aging eyes with no disease, and btw no Astigmatism either, which to my knowledge does not just go away, so that was probably a misdiagnosis all those years ago. I do wear readers for reading small print, and glasses for night driving. But, that is just normal aging of the eyes. I am tested every year for Diabetes, and I do not have it. So, the weird eye issues continue with no reason for them. I have also been tested for Sjogren’s which was also negative. As I researched for this post, I found a few articles from other countries how dry eyes and other eye symptoms could be a warning sign of Kidney Disease. Now that got my attention. With further reading I found that the eyes will accumulate excess Phosphorus and Calcium which can cause dry, gritty and fluctuating vision in the eyes. Bingo! That explains perfectly what I experience especially the fluctuating vision issue. So, now I have started paying more attention to my Phosphorus intake and how my eyes respond the next day. I am definitely noticing a correlation, that if I consume higher amounts of Phosphorus my vision is definitely fluctuated the next day. I feel like if anyone had even remotely researched the things I told them, even after diagnosis of CKD, this information could have been figured out a long time ago. I don’t find doctors really take the time to try to figure out why something is, but rather just to offer medications which are just bandaids for some issues. I am not knocking medication, I just think figuring out the actual cause, and the actual real fix makes better sense to me. Eye drops do help the dryness, but they do not help the fluctuating vision. Please note I am not suggesting anyone who has dry eyes has Kidney Disease. There are many reasons to have dry eyes, including medication, Diabetes, clogged tear ducts, etc. But, if you can not get a reason for dry eyes, or more importantly fluctuating vision you may need to dig a little further.

So, how have I figured out to treat my dry eyes, and fluctuating vision, the best that suits my needs?

1- I avoid higher phosphorus foods, and if I do eat them, like whole grain bread, I keep a food diary so I knowhow much I am consuming. I have not been advised by my doctor to limit Phosphorus intake, but I do try to stay within the recommended daily requirement of 700 to 900mg per day. Fast food, processed foods, and quick prepare foods have the highest phosphorus levels due to the additives in those foods.

2- I use preservative free eye drops once or twice a day. Be sure they are preservative free. You do not need a prescription for OTC eye drops. My eye doctor did give me some that were supposed to be better, but they were just more expensive, and did not work any better.

3- I do daily eye massage, and eye exercises to get the oils and fluids naturally flowing. You will find videos, and links below to help you learn how to do this. Be sure your hands are clean before touching your eyes. In addition to how the video explains eye massage I also rub the base of my eyelashes all the way across and several times a day I massage my tear ducts for a count of ten times. This helps increase my natural tears.

4- I see my eye doctor every other year, or if I have new concerns. While it is frustrating that I never get complete information and am told I have healthy eyes, it is imperative to keep up with prevention and care of the eyes. When you have Kidney Disease it can cause further damage to the eyes.

If you are experiencing strange eye symptoms that are unexplained, or undiagnosed, please seek the attention of a doctor. Request that a full set of bloodwork be done, and a urinalysis, even if you have to pay for it yourself. I believe most areas have a sliding scale facility somewhere where most people without insurance can access. If you need help with medical issues please reach out to your local public health department to see what may be available to you.

Since undertaking my own eye care routine I have less days of fluctuating vision, and rarely have headaches.

If you would like to learn how to track your Phosphorus better, or how I alter meals for my CKD, check out my new subscription Meals with Melissa. Or, you can inquire about my one on one health coaching service for more in depth coaching. Please use the contact form at the end of this post to message me to discuss one on one coaching.


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Portion distortion: The humble potato, plus gift idea #7 for people with CKD

Welcome back! I have not done a Portion Distortion post in a while. Follow me on Pinterest. So, I thought today I would focus on the humble potato. Potatoes are a powerhouse of nutrition. Now, I know you are going to say they are very high in potassium, so not good for CKD, and they are high in Carbs, so not good for Diabetes or losing weight. All of that is true. However, it comes down to portion control and knowing how many carbs a day you are allowed in your diet. If your doctor absolutely tells you no potatoes, then obviously no potatoes. 1 medium potato has 26 grams of Carbs. If you are allowed 150 grams of carbs per day, then you may be able to eat that one potato. Plus, if you have CKD you can soak your potatoes prior to cooking to reduce the potassium amount. If I am making mashed potatoes I soak mine for an hour, drain the water, and soak again with fresh water for another hour. Then drain the water again, add fresh water, and cook as usual. The key is to control the portion size. A serving of mashed potatoes is 1/2 cup. Avoid french fries, or other deep-fried potatoes, to avoid all of the fat. An air fryer is helpful. If you do decide to eat french fries eat only one small portion. Don’t add cheese, bacon, and sour cream if you are trying to make your potato a healthier option. Also, potato chips, while made from potatoes, are not the humble potato I am speaking of. There is a video below on the health benefits of potatoes, and you can read about the amazing potato here. Do you want to learn more about Mindfulness or my new 30 Day Coaching Plan? Then use the contact form at the end of the post to send me a message with whatever you are interested in.

If you read this blog then you know I have stage 3 CKD. I eat one potato a day, usually for lunch. I bake it, or steam it I guess, in my Instant Pot. I weigh it and calculate my carbs and record it. I do not have issues with potassium so eating potatoes is ok for me at this stage. However, if potassium was a problem, I would have to figure out how much potassium I would be allowed in a day, and then eat my potato and record it. I don’t see me giving up my daily potato habit. But, one potato has over 700 mg of Potassium, and some people with CKD are only allowed 4,000 mg of Potassium per day. You have to be careful with Potassium, too much, and too little can both be unhealthy for the body. If you have CKD and you love potatoes, talk to your doctor or dietitian about how much potassium you can have in a day and then stick to it.

Before I get to the fabulous gift idea for today I want to give an update on my low carb meals. I had a rough Friday and Saturday. While in Publix they had some of their deli sunflower bread. This stuff is to die for, and it is almost always sold out. Now, the smart thing to do would have been to eat two slices and freeze the rest. But, no I did not do that. I ate a lot of it, and I mean a lot. It was delicious and I didn’t feel guilty, but then I had to get back on track. Saturday, my daughter made homemade pizzas with flatbread I bought at Aldis. I was going to have some and then I decided not to consider all the Sunflower Bread I ate the day before. I aim for 70-100 total carbs per day. So, and this was delicious you guys, I made a low carb pizza bowl type thing. I pan-fried cabbage, onions, 8 slices of pepperoni with a little garlic until the cabbage was to my liking. Then I put some mozzarella cheese on, about an ounce and a half, and put it in a bowl. I will definitely make this again. Tonight, we are having chicken alfredo. I decided to have a small amount of the alfredo sauce, which I don’t care for because it is low in carbs. I will cook the pasta separately, and my family can just add the chicken and sauce to their pasta. Mine will be served with a sweet potato. I know that doesn’t make sense it is still carbs. Yes, but a sweet potato has way more nutrition than pasta and I will only have one serving. Tuesday morning we volunteer and I very rarely eat before we go. It is physical and I need energy stores. Tomorrow will be my next Dollar Tree food challenge. I am almost certain I will not be eating this one either, but my husband or daughter may. Come back tomorrow to check it out. My Herb for the month of December, Dill is going well. It is super delicious on potatoes, lol.

Ok, gift idea #7 for people with CKD is, a heating pad. People with CKD often suffer from pain from cramping, and for other reasons. Due to restrictions on OTC medications, it can be hard for them to get relief. Heat is a wonderful tool to relieve pain. I found two very cool heating pads on Amazon. One is a vest, that you wear for back, shoulder, and neck pain relief. That one looks really awesome. You will find it here. The other one is one that actually wraps around the body part that needs heat. You can find it here. As for me, I get thigh cramps, probably from exercise, and heat is wonderful to help relieve the cramps. Please always follow the manufacturer’s directions for use to prevent injury. If you are prone to blood clots be sure and ask your doctor if heat is safe for you to use.

I just wanted to make a quick note about Epsom Salts. A lot of bath salts actually contain Epsom Salts. Epsom Salts are very high in Magnesium and should not be used if you have CKD without asking your doctor.


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Throwback thursday: buns workout

Be sure to read the whole post to learn what I have eaten today for my meatless challenge, and how I am feeling about it. In the 90s when I was very fit, long before children lol, one of my favorite toning videos was Buns of Steel. I had super muscular and nice legs. It is a brutal workout. I used to own the videos, but I guess over the years I weeded them all out because I can’t find them in my stash. The video below is the beginner version of the Buns of Steel, If you want your buns, and legs in shape these original videos are the way to go. However, I found a video from Popsugar, and tried it yesterday. Yall I can hardly walk today. It is tough and your muscles will definitely take notice. It is aimed at just thighs, no buns, and triceps. I only did half of it, but my goal will be to work up to the whole video. It is short and intense.

Yesterday, if you read my post, then you know I am going meatless for a week. I can tell you after only one day I woke up starving and with a headache. I am concerned about the amount of Phosphorus I may be consuming in relation to my kidney disease. I am posting a link that talks about Phosphorus in foods. This particular website says adults should get 700mg of Phosphorus. That is way less than the 900 mg I had previously read. That is very easy to reach and go over on a meatless diet. While meat does have Phosphorus parboiling it decreases it a lot. If you are a processed food eater, or convenience meals, that type of Phosphorus is 100% absorbed by the body. Just a few things to keep in mind. It is worth reading if you have kidney disease. I am not telling you not to consume Phosphorus. I am saying you should pay attention to it. Yesterday, I took a half of a multi vitamin. Today, I won’t, but I will take a Vitamin B12.

I do not typically eat breakfast, but I do eat a brunch type meal to combine breakfast and lunch. I always have coffee with creamer. I guess that could be breakfast, lol. I had leftover baked potatoes. I had a bunch of potatoes that I froze from my Misfits box. So, I put them all in the Instapot. Not technically baked, but that is what I call them. A baked potato has 59 mg of Phosphorus. I also had some mushrooms left over and pearl onions. This was really delicious my husband loved it. My mushrooms were from a jar so I rinse them before cooking to decrease the sodium. I had 1/4 cup of mushrooms for 26 mg of Phosphorus. The pearl onions had 7 mg of Phosphorus. I ate 10 green grapes that has 10 mg of Phosphorus. Then I added 2 fried eggs on top which has 200 mg of Phosphorus for 2 eggs. That is about 300 mg of Phosphorus just in this meal alone. These are estimates because it isn’t easy to get accurate data. I used Eat This Much website.


Learn About G-bombs!

This post will combine a bunch of different topics into one. Yesterday, I shared that this week’s food challenge was for me to be completely meat-free. Why I decided on that challenge I did not explain. If you follow me you know I have CKD. Last week I was browsing through Twitter and one of the kidney organizations I follow was doing a survey on initiatives that various kidney patients would like to see them pursue in the new year. I also knew before that, that there was a huge push for a plant-based diet to be used to treat kidney disease. Some of the questions were geared around that topic. One of my biggest complaints with them using a plant-based diet to treat kidney disease, well actually two complaints, is 1- phosphorus in a plant-based diet is going to be very high levels according to research I have done, though it may not be well absorbed by the body, and 2- I feel like Anemia is a huge issue to consider for anyone on a plant-based diet, but could be dangerous for people with kidney disease. Those 2 reasons, plus the video below encouraged me to approach this topic in the form of a food challenge.

You also know, if you read this blog, that I am creating a Nutrition course for my high school child. The video below will be included in that course.

To begin I need to clarify some frustrating definitions.

What is plant-based? According to Harvard University a plant-based diet is: plant-based or plant-forward eating patterns focus on foods primarily from plants. This includes not only fruits and vegetables, but also nuts, seeds, oils, whole grains, legumes, and beans. It doesn’t mean that you are vegetarian or vegan and never eat meat or dairy. Rather, you are proportionately choosing more of your foods from plant sources. Why does this frustrate me? For one thing, not everyone classifies it the same way. Some lump plant-based in with veganism. Plant-based simply means the majority of your daily food intake will come from plants. This could mean frozen, canned, etc, especially if you live in a food desert.

What is whole food plant-based? This is a much stricter version of a plant-based diet. Foods should be of the least processed possible and probably raw. In another words in its most natural form. Why is this frustrating? Again, because so many groups and organizations are lumping all of it together, and trust me people take this stuff personally. Let me be clear. If you live in a food desert or on a fixed income, this diet is going to be very hard to follow and or very expensive. A lot in this group are also putting veganism in there. Some of these do not consume any oil in any form as it is highly processed.

What is Vegetarian? Very similar to plant-based, matter of fact I would say almost exactly with the exception that again, organizations and other entities are trying to push the Veganism movement in here. I think that is why it is now called plant-based instead of Vegetarianism. I will be doing plant-based or Vegetarian with some dairy and some eggs. Why? Because of B12. It is the best way to get that vitamin. I have no desire to be Anemic, and yes I can and will take a multivitamin but as you may or may not know there is some evidence that suggests the body does not even absorb multivitamins and are a complete waste of money.

What is Vegan? Vegan’s eat no meat at all, or any product that is derived from meat. They do not buy leather, or any fashion and beauty products derived from or tested on animals. This is a very noble goal to have. It is also not the healthiest for humans. It is awesome for animals, but some studies suggest Vegans do not necessarily eat a healthy diet just because they are not consuming meat products. Next week I will focus on this as it pertains to kidney disease. Some will say Veganism is a political movement and a lot of them are kind of aggressive about their choices as it pertains to convincing others.

I am not saying any of these are better or worse. What I am saying is that without proper education of all the issues that go with kidney disease and the complexities of it, these types of diets will only confuse people. Since phosphorus is not on food labels and is very hard to track in food items, suggesting everyone should be plant-based is complicated. I don’t want B12 injections, so I will do what my body needs to keep Anemia away. If that means I eat small amounts of meat or meat products then that is what I will do.

Now, to the next confusing part of this post. The video below is not about kidney disease. But, it is about living a healthier life into our later years. She mentions G-Bombs in the video and that everyone should be eating them every day. Of course, I had to see what G-Bombs were. Why is this confusing and frustrating? Keep reading to find out.

G-bombs is an acronym for Greens, Berries, Onions, Mushrooms, Beans and Seeds. Great, right? Let’s check some more.

Greens- If you follow some groups, greens means leafy greens. Such as mustard greens, spinach, kale, parsley, romaine lettuce etc. Well, some of us don’t actually like a lot of those greens. You may be bummed even thinking you can not meet your greens’ needs. Greens encompass any food source that is green. Yes, it is true that leafy greens are exceptionally healthy, but so are lots of other greens such as iceberg lettuce, peas, green beans, limes, broccoli, and so many more. So, go ahead and eat your greens, all greens. But, what if you have CKD? If you have kidney disease these greens are typically very high in potassium. So, be sure to eat them in small to moderate amounts. Plus, keep in mind if you are taking Coumadin, or Warfarin greens can be very high in Vitamin K which can affect the effectiveness of your medication. These things just confuse people when they are not told accurate information.

Berries- This one completely made me laugh. Strawberries, blackberries and others are not berries. They are fruit, but not berries. However, bananas, avocados, pumpkins, tomatoes, watermelon, and kiwis are. LOL, so eat your berries. I am pretty sure when they said berries in the video, as a matter of fact, I think she said strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, etc. Now, mind you those fruits are still very good for you but are not berries. Blueberries might be. Again, confusing to consumers of this information.

Onions- Alright I will give them this one. I don’t think there is any way to confuse onions.

Mushrooms- Mushrooms are actually very healthy and a decent protein source for anyone not eating meat. However, I don’t care for fresh mushrooms so I only eat canned or jarred. Plus mushrooms, again are very high in their phosphorus content and should be eaten mindfully if you have kidney disease. Canned or jarred may be less in phosphorus due to processing, but there is no definitive test I can find to that. They are very low in calories too.

Beans- This is my least favorite food to eat. Legumes would fall under this too, but peas are the only ones I like. I can eat small amounts of beans and that is not bad because beans, except green beans are high in potassium and phosphorus. They would need to be eaten with care if you have kidney disease. I only eat 1/4 cup at a time. They are a good source of protein but there is debate about how much of that protein is actually usable by the body.

Seeds- This is another very confusing category. You are probably eating way more seeds than you ever knew. You are probably thinking flax seeds, chia seeds and sunflower seeds. While those are seeds, again, if you have kidney disease these can be very high in phosphorus and I consume in small amounts only. Nuts can also be included according to the video, again, phosphorus is an issue. Read about seeds, here.

When you put all of this info together you can see how I, someone with kidney disease is frustrated with these kinds of recommendations. I don’t think there are enough studies showing it is safe for all aspects of kidney disease. Yes, I put all of that on my survey. Now, with all of that said, anytime you can eat a healthier diet with less processed foods and more whole foods it is obviously going to be better.

Now, for what I ate today. I made an avocado dressing to put on a baked potato and carrots for lunch. I typically don’t eat breakfast, but I did have a slice of leftover pizza. Dinner will be broccoli, sauteed mushrooms and onions and two eggs. I am not hungry and seem to be satisfied enough. I did go slightly over my carbs limit. I use Myhealthykidney, an app on my phone, and or Eat This Much website to try and figure out how much phosphorus I am consuming. Contact me to learn about my Health Coaching plans.


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Halloween and Kidney Disease!

First let me state, for new readers, I have CKD stage 3. I do not have Diabetes or HTN. I have dedicated my Health Coaching to bringing awareness to Kidney Disease and the complications that come with it. If you would like to learn more about my Health Coaching service, use the contact form at the end of the post to message me. Holidays are especially hard for people with CKD, due to limitations in foods they can eat.

I have been a nurse for 33 years. Over those years I have had friends and patients with chronic diseases that they just never seem to manage very well. I always wondered why? Then, I was diagnosed with CKD in 2017. It is hard, very hard, that’s why. But, with determination, communication with your doctor, support services, family and friends it can be done. You can still live a full and happy life.

I follow a lot of social media groups, organizations with recipes tips, etc, I have purchased kidney cook books, and yet one thing I am always disappointed with is that they often are very high in Phosphorus. Phosphorus is not on food labels so tracking it can be very difficult. I have mentioned before that I use Eat This Much and My Healthy Kidney to help me judge the amount of phosphorus in foods.

Halloween candy can be very high in Phosphorus. The peanut butter cups I mentioned yesterday, have 78 mg of Phosphorus per serving. While that is considered low, a serving was two little pieces.. So, you can see how quickly that could add up. With the high limit of 900 mg per day of Phosphorus, or less, for most kidney patients, candy can be dangerous.

Below, I have put together some of my previous posts that cover Halloween, candy, or holiday foods. Maybe you are taking your kids trick or treating, or want to have a Halloween party. Covid can be very dangerous to those of us who have CKD. But, it doesn’t mean we should have to hide away and have no life as politicians have suggested. I am not advocating anyone to be dangerous, risky, or spread the virus. If you are sick you should stay away from people, even for the regular flu virus. I am just saying we deserve a life as much as anyone else, and safety is of utmost importance. I do not put recipe amount facts because I don’t know them for sure. If you want to use any of them for the upcoming holidays, do a little research on the ingredients to be sure they fit your diet needs. I find a lot of kidney patients complain that families don’t even attempt to honor their diet needs at holidays. Now, that is their perspective and may or may not be the whole story, however from personal experience I can say it is accurate. People are so caught up in their own wants and needs that they exclude anyone who may be different than theirs. Some other things I have noticed. People who are recovering alcoholics and people drink in front of them. People who have quit smoking and they have to sit in a room full of smokers at family events. People who have sensitivities or allergies to foods and not one meal item has been created with them in mind. These are things that alienate people and add to their loneliness or isolation. Most people will not ask what will be served or how it will be adapted to meet their needs as not to feel like a burden. These are all things that make me very sad.












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Muscles used when running!

I had mentioned before that my daughter wants to be a police officer. I also mentioned that as part of her PE education this year she would begin training for the Physical Fitness test to be an officer. It is my goal to do it with her. She has to be able to run 1.5 miles in 15 min. I have completed this goal. I don’t know if it is running, or jogging, but whatever I did it. I am still doing it at least once a week, but I did have to stop for a bit because I have a history of Plantar Fasciitis and it was starting to flare up. Trust me if you have ever had it, you don’t really want it again. I am also 51 and have Kidney Disease, so I have to be sure and monitor for any symptoms of over stress or High Blood Pressure. I did get medical clearance from my kidney doctor to increase my intensity of exercise as long as I have no heart issues, which I do not. As a goal it is a great goal to have, but I must say just plain old fast walking is much more enjoyable and less jarring to the body. High impact aerobics is great, however for maintaining bone health as we age. You should start slow and increase slowly to be sure your body can tolerate it, and always seek approval from your doctor if you have underlying medical issues or have lived a sedentary lifestyle for an extended period of time.

See the image below to see all of the muscles used while running, or even jogging. The original source of the image is freetrainers.com


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Healthy Tip Tuesday: Get up and move!

If you have ever visited a doctor then you know one of the things they are regularly going to ask, or advise is to move more. To get more exercise, be more active, be physically fit. Unfortunately, they don’t often explain what those directions mean. They actually have a little bit of different definitions.

Exercise is deliberate, timed activity, usually aerobic or non-aerobic. It is on top of whatever activity you do throughout the day. For example I am a nurse. When I work I average 15,000 steps per shift. That is about 6 miles per shift. You would think that counts as exercise. But, not it is not. I did not plan it, it just is nature of the job. If I went home and spent 30 minutes walking on the bike path, that would be exercise. It was deliberate and I planned it, setting aside that time in my day to do it. The main goal is to increase your heart rate, and make you breathe harder.

Being active simply means that at least 5 days a week you are physically moving your body for at least 30 minutes. While it is true this could be exercise if you heart rate goes high enough, it could just be something as simple as gentle walk around the park, gardening or housework. For me I have set a goal to be active every hour by getting up and walking at least 250 steps each hour. This is an easy attainable goal for anyone to have. If you have a desk job, or are basically sedentary this is a good goal to start with. I use a Fitbit to track my steps, but I know that two laps around my back yard is 250 steps.

Physically fit is a more technical term as to how strong your muscles are, including your heart and lungs. Do you remember when you were in school and you had to take a Physical Fitness test each year? Remember squat thrusts, sit ups and all that horrid stuff? Well that is exactly that, a Physical Fitness test. If you would like to find out if you are physically fit for your age, use the contact form at the end of this post to message me for a free meet and greet. I like to consider myself physically fit. My daughter wants to be a police officer and she has to pass a physical fitness test. Because we homeschool, I have set up a regime for her to be able to pass it. I have decided to do it with her. I am 51 so I have already started practicing, she is 16. I can already do the pushups and situps. The 1.5 mile run in 15 minutes, well I can almost do it. I am so proud of myself I can not even tell you. Please remember it has taken me 3 years of gradual increase in exercise to get to this point. I did not go from couch potato to these kinds of exercises over night. It is a process. If you would like to have me help you create an exercise plan to suit your needs, use the contact form at the end of the post to send me an email.

If you would like to move more, via walking, check out my updated Health Buddy Melissa Walking Plan.


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Why is Covid 19 Causing Damage to the Kidneys?

All this week I will be dedicating time to discussions of why Covid 19 is attacking the kidneys, according to scientists.

Are you physically fit for your age?

First, what is the definition of being physically fit? If you are “Physically Fits you have a balance of cardiovascular endurance, muscular endurance, balance, flexibility, muscular strength, and % body fat As you can see it isn’t just about how strong you are, or how fast you can run. Physical fitness is different for all age groups and between the genders. As you get older the joints naturally start to lose some of their range of motion, muscle mass become less, and strength decreases. I will be 51 in a few days, and I can tell you even with CKD, I have worked hard to be more physically fit for my age group. Some of them I have mastered, and can do better than some in their 30’s, some I am not even close to mastering, such as a pull up. I can’t do a pull up to save my life. But, I can do 20 push ups in a minute. I have mentioned before that I homeschool my children. I only have one left, and she has decided to go into Law Enforcement. She has to be able to pass a physical fitness test to even get into the academy. I am determined to do this with her. However, she is 16 and as I mentioned I am soon to be 51. A daunting challenge, but I am up for it. I would love to work with you to help you meet your physical fitness goals. I started out 2020 wanting to walk 5 miles a day. I have reached that goal and it is time to move on to the next.

Would you like to learn your physical fitness score? Would you like to make a plan to help improve it? Email me at melissa@healthbuddymelissa.coach or use the contact form under the images to message me for a free meet and greet. You can then decide if you want to take the free physical fitness test.