Sunday, June 26, 2022

The Mystery of the Popping Hip

Sometimes growing older presents some challenges. Don't get me wrong, there are also a lot of good things as long as a person stays fairly healthy. There are less expectations from everyone. My family, especially my grandchildren, treat me as a fragile old lady so I'm not expected to do so many physical things. I can sit out playing basketball and jumping on a trampoline. They hug me and pat me on the back. I sit in a chair and watch them. I hardly have to drive anywhere. I only drove 5,000 this entire year, and I get invited for meals regularly.

In my attempt at better health I started walking for exercise a while ago. My algorithm promotes walking every time I open social media so I figured it was probably the safest form of exercise for me apart from the chair yoga that also pops up regularly. That might me my next option. All winter I walked on the treadmill, but as soon as the ice was gone I walked outside. All was well. I enjoyed it so much more than walking inside the house. Never being satisfied with the status quo, I tried to increase my heart rate and better my time slightly everyday. I am not a runner and my personal best times are like a turtle, but I was down to seventeen minute miles. Then it happened. My hip started popping with every step. I googled it and it is something that happens to dancers and elite runners. I am neither but just plain old pushing the envelope. I backed off slightly but the hip pop continued. I read that stretching and rest was the cure. I am not going to the doctor for this unless it gets painful. They will prescribe pain pills, and I want to avoid any of that. 

For two weeks I didn't go on my walks and I stretched as best I could. It didn't help a great deal, and so I decided to get some new shoes. Shoes break down overtime and mine were pretty old. They still looked fine, but a lot of people look wonderful and are a mess inside. I went to a store specifically for running and walking shoes called Fleet Feet. When I arrived they had me stand on a measuring device and the information was recorded on an iPad. Then I had to walk across a mat several times to record how I walk. We sat down afterward and they went over the information. It measures the foot, determines the arch and where you put the most pressure. After that they bring out options. Here is the shocking part. I always wore a 8 1/2 shoe. It isn't tiny and is pretty average for a woman, but now I measured 9.3.  The salesperson said they always round up a size so because I was so close to 9 1/2, he brought out a 10 1/2. WHAT??  I wasn't buying skis! I tried on several pair and settled on a certain shoe.  They felt really good. Of course they did. I had two inches of toe space. I walked back and forth and my hip was not popping. I was thrilled. I wore them out of the store. There was a 60 day return policy if they didn't work out.

My next stop was the grocery store. I was a little self conscious about the size. I kept humming "My Darling Clementine". The part that says "and her shoes were number 9 (or 10 1/2) herring boxes". You young people won't understand this reference, but there actually is an old song with this title.  It's a sad song so be prepared. There was a learning curve wearing these shoes especially on navigating corners and getting out of the car but overall they felt good. Then the popping started again. The difference was I could make it stop my shifting my foot in the shoe. I worked with tying the shoes tighter or looser. That was a few weeks ago. I went back to walking every other day. Then yesterday it didn't pop at all on my whole walk, but that isn't always the case. It comes and goes. Sometimes my other leg hurts. I am walking slower with a shorter stride. Whether it has healed with time or its the $150 clown shoes, I am not sure, but I hope it continues to improve. It's probably old age, and I should be grateful I can do as well as I can.  I kept the shoes. Next time I will downsize slightly, but overall the shoes helped. In my opinion it's a much better option than therapy and pain pills.