Allergic to Exercise

Allergic to Exercise

Middle-Age-Moments-Blog-Fitness-with-PJ

Yes. This is real.

I am allergic to my job. Quite literally.

I have never written about this, or mentioned it during any of my YouTube workouts – which is surprising since I love to talk while filming. But, I’m allergic to my job and I could swell up like a blowfish, itch like a dog with fleas, and gulp for breath like I’m drowning, if the conditions are just right.

They call it Exercise-Induced Anaphylactic Shock. I call it inconvenient as hell.

But, let’s back up a bit.

When I was in grade seven my teacher was a long-distance runner. He loved to run,  he loved to brag about his ability to run, and in turn, he loved to torture us by making us run, too. And run we did. We ran around the school, we ran around the block, we ran in track meets, and we ran in cross country races. 

I was never fast and could usually be found dead last, or close to it. Being a chubby kid, addicted to chocolate bars and Dairy Queen, made it difficult to find my running legs, let alone an ability to be quick and nimble. 

But, I participated in all the races nonetheless. 

It was after one of those cross country races that I was in rougher shape than normal. I finished, but by the time I hit the finish line my face was swelling up, my body was on fire, and I was covered in hives.

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Being the youngest of four children my parents were done with the nurturing and worrying that comes with the firstborn. So, when we got home I was sent to have a warm bath and the episode was quickly forgotten.

Plus, things were handled differently back in the early ’80s. Those were the days that your seatbelt was your Mom or Dad throwing their arm across your body when they stopped suddenly. This was also the time when we played outside unsupervised, bicycled to school by ourselves (without helmets), drank from garden hoses, and became blood sisters’ with our best friend. 

In other words, parents did some shady shit when we were younger.

My reactions after races were getting worse, though. By the end of the fourth race, it was becoming apparent to my parents that warm baths were not the solution. This is when I ended up in the emergency room with the diagnosis of early-stages anaphylactic shock.

From there I was sent to an allergist who explained that I had a rare condition called Exercise-Induced Anaphylactic Shock.

This means if I combine exercising with certain foods (like carrots, lettuces, celery) I can go into anaphylactic shock. This is the same anaphylactic shock that people who are allergic to bees go into, except sub out “bees” and add “working out” for me – damn, did I pick the perfect career, or what?

As I got older not only was healthy food a trigger, but altitude and stress became an issue as well. The stress was usually in the form of my menstrual cycle or lack of sleep. Honest to God, I could eat a chocolate chip cookie, near sea level, go for a run and all would be fine. Give me a salad, though, on a mountain, while I had my period, and all hell could break loose.  

I don’t even need to be exercising hard either. Case in point – the time I ended up in the ER at Lake Tahoe. I had a small piece of papaya, walked to the lake and BOOM, one came on. Who knew papaya was so fucking evil?

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It’s embarrassing when I have an attack and I hate it when people make a fuss about it. Thankfully I know the signs well enough and when I start to feel one come on I pop a few Benadryl, rest, high five LH, and I’m good to go in an hour or so. 

When I decided to become a personal trainer I talked about it with my allergist and, while he wasn’t thrilled about the idea, he said he had confidence in me that I would figure this out.

And I have. 

Because the thought of not exercising never entered my brain. Even when I was that chunky, back-of-the-pack kid. I never thought about quitting.

I love exercising, and this has just been a minor speed bump along the way.

Getting older has actually helped as well (finally ONE perk to age). I don’t trigger as easily as I used to, and the experience has taught me that when you want something, you can always find a way. 

Now, when people tell me (jokingly) that they don’t exercise because they are allergic to it, I just smile and say “You too?”.

 

PJ ox

Last week’s blog “Detached Retinas”… read here.

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Upper Body Workout at Home with Dumbbells for Women Over 40

Upper Body Workout at Home with Dumbbells for Women Over 40

Upper Body Workout at Home with Dumbbells for Women Over 40
[BONUS: shoulder/mobility drills]

Join me for an upper body workout for home, only using dumbells. Not only do we hit the upper body, but I also place focus on our shoulder mobility and stability… because these are two areas that start to tank when we are over 40.

In addition, we finish off with a fun bicep, triceps and shoulder finisher.

TOOLS NEEDED

light, moderate, heavy dumbbells (FYI: if you own a BOSU ball and/or a TRX have those ready too. I’ll show you where you can add them.)

THE WORKOUT

Shoulder Mobility/Stability Series
1. Back extensions with squeezes
2. Protract/retract
3. Bridge with T-Spine Reaches ADD Reverse Bridge (adv)
3 x 12

4. Narrow to wide row
5. Chest press, wide to narrow
3 x 50sec

6. Kneeling reverse fly
7. Kneeling tricep kickback
8. Supine piston press
9. Other side fly
10. Other side kickback
2 x 40sec

11. Side plank with lateral lift
12. Side crunch
13. Other side
14. Side crunch
2 x 30sec

Finishers:
15. 21’s bicep curls
16. 21’s tricep extensions
17. 21’s shoulder presses

TIRED OF TRYING TO FIGURE WHAT WORKOUTS YOU
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PJ ox

Exercises To Avoid if You Have Low Back Pain | For Women Over 40

Exercises To Avoid if You Have Low Back Pain | For Women Over 40

Exercises To Avoid if You Have Low Back Pain for Women Over 40

Think you can’t exercise when you have low back pain? Well, you can! Learn what exercises not to do with low back pain, and what ones to do instead.

And, make sure you stay till the end where I share my spinal hygiene tip that everyone who sits at a desk needs to do!

Low Back Friendly Workouts:
30-Min Seated Cardio & Strength 
20-Min Arm Workout 
12-Min After Workout Stretches 
18-Min Stretching & Mobility Workout 
20-Min Seated Strength 
40-Min Total Body Strength 
19-Min Stretches for Low Back Pain 

TIRED OF TRYING TO FIGURE WHAT WORKOUTS YOU
SHOULD BE DOING

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PJ ox

AMRAP Workout For Home | No Equipment | For Women Over 40

AMRAP Workout For Home | No Equipment | For Women Over 40

AMRAP Workout For Home | No Equipment | for Women Over 40

This is an awesome cardio workout and it will TORCH a ton of calories!

AMRAP stands for “as many reps as possible” or “as many rounds as possible.” And you can do this AMRAP workout at home because we use no equipment.

 TOOLS NEEDED

none

THE WORKOUT

1 arm burpees x10
Prisoner arm squats x10
– 4 minutes

Hang snatch with lunge x10
Step out side lunges with squat x10
– 4 minutes

Woodchop x10
Plank pull thrus x10
– 4 minutes

Sumo squat jacks x10
Lateral hop overs x10
– 4 minutes

TIRED OF TRYING TO FIGURE WHAT WORKOUTS YOU
SHOULD BE DOING

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HERE WE COME.

 

PJ ox

Allergic to Exercise

Getting Older and Detaching Retinas

Middle-Age-Moments-Blog-Fitness-with-PJ

Over 40? You need to know this then.

Did you know that as we get older, the eye goo (technical term: the vitreous body) that fills the space between our lens and retina becomes less gel-like and condenses?

Neither did I, until I ended up in the ER because of it.

A few weeks ago, I had “flashing,” and “floaters” pop up in my right eye, which freaked me out because as the evening progressed, it got worse – so I asked LH to drive me to the ER.

This “ask” did not come easy, either. 

In my opinion, the Emergency Room is only for people who are bleeding profusely or are having a near-death experience. And FYI: your limb has to be severed to warrant an ER visit, too. Case in point, a few months I cut my finger badly, and while I should have gone for stitches, I instead opted for a bandage and duct tape. It worked like a hot damn.

But you don’t want shit happening with your eyes—a scar on your finger, no problem, that’s nothing to get stressed over. Your eyes, though, you don’t want to mess with your peepers.

So, off we went.

Once we arrived, LH had to stay in the car (due to COVID restrictions), and I sat my ass down in the hallway and waited for the doctor. I was bored out of my skull too. You see, my stupid eye would not allow me to use my phone, so the only entertainment I had was counting the ceiling tiles and eavesdropping on other people’s problems.

When the doctor finally arrived, I had to giggle. Because the first thing that popped into my head was, “Is he even old enough to drive?”. And while that’s not so funny, what is funny is my father said the same thing many years ago about HIS ER doctor. 

I guess we all eventually start sounding like our parents at some point. 

Once I confirmed that he was old enough to drive, drink and vote, I allowed him to check out my eye. Long story short, he couldn’t see anything dramatic, and they booked me an eye specialist appointment for further testing.

This was great news because my big sis, Karen, has had two detached retina’s and her symptoms were the same as mine. I messaged her to tell her the news, and she replied, now you can go to bed and not wake up blind. Empathy and sympathy run high in my family. 

A few days later, I ended up in the eye doctor’s chair to find out that I have Posterior Vitreous Detachment. When pressed as to how I got this, her reply was, posterior vitreous detachment is common during advanced age.

WTF? 

Getting older can cause this too?

Not only do we have to contend with ALL the other crap that happens when we are at an “advanced” age, but we are also more susceptible to our retina detaching?

That’s. Messed. Up.

Most people with vitreous detachment go back to normal after a few months, however, we do run the risk of retina detachment, so I’m to go back in a month for another eye exam.

The only good thing that came out of this was a yoga workout on YouTube. 😂

Between the ER visit and the eye doctor’s appointment, I wasn’t allowed to do anything strenuous. Still, I needed to film a workout for the channel, and a lot of people in the community have been asking for a yoga workout, so I thought, let’s make lemonade out of lemons, and I released one of my best yoga workouts to date. 

Moral of the story: don’t hesitate to go to ER if there’s weird stuff happening to you, and don’t ask to see your doctor’s driver’s licence to confirm their age. They don’t like that. 

 

PJ ox

Last week’s blog “Unwanted Hair”… read here.

TIRED OF TRYING TO FIGURE WHAT WORKOUTS YOU
SHOULD BE DOING

GRAB MY 21 DAY FITNESS PROGRAM AND LET ME DO THE PROGRAMMING FOR YA.

 

FIT & FIERCE...
HERE WE COME.

 

PJ ox

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