Karen comes to the table with all the motivation, desire and commitment of a competitive athlete. Unfortunately, she also comes with a lot of the orthopedic ailments that occur with many former athletes (especially one who now spends a majority of her day sitting). Of particular concern are Karen’s arthritic knees, her right shoulder (which has a history of subluxation or “popping out”) and her lower back. Karen and I both agree that increasing lean muscle mass (which will drastically improve her body composition profile) and strength training (particularly in the core as well as the musculature surrounding her knees and shoulders) will serve as priority number one in combating these orthopedic issues.
Karen’s cardiovascular “engine” test also showed an area of focus that will not only get her back to the more aggressive physical activities that she is striving for (pickup basketball and CrossFit), but once again help with her body composition profile. The usually gregarious Karen went through a “moment of silence” during her submaximal aerobic test as she pushed herself through the 9 minute and 30 second test. Following the test, she was very well aware that moving forward she needs to step up her cardiovascular game.
I am thrilled with Karen’s willingness to share her journey with the Seattle Storm family and to inspire others who wish to take their health to a higher level. As she begins her journey, her biggest barrier will be to accept that she currently isn’t the athlete that she once was, but to realize that with time, patience and a positive mindset, she can unleash the beast screaming to come out. Karen will need to take things slow and steady and focus on the marathon, not the sprint. Focus for her will be to get her joints healthy again before moving on to the “cool” stuff.