On Vivo Barefoot shoes and achilles pain

I’ve got osteoarthritis in my right big toe at the ball of the foot due to an old kickboxing injury. I’m kind of slowly growing a bunion due to it. It got to the point where the toe would go rigid after a run and was excruciatingly painful. It also was getting difficult to do some yoga poses like Hero pose / Virasana as my foot would cramp up. A little under 3 years ago now, a massage therapist recommended that I try Vivo Barefoot shoes as they allow your feet to spread out and encourage a greater foot mobility. They also make the muscles in your feet stronger as they move more as your foot has less support from the shoe. Given that I know that movement of the joint and strengthening of the muscles around it is good for arthritis, I decided to try them, and it worked! The

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On (no longer?) being an asthmatic

I’ve had asthma since I was a kid. I don’t know if I was born with it or if it developed after a serious case of pneumonia that saw me hospitalised when I was around 8 or 9, and which left me with scarred lungs and a pathetic peak flow score. Unfortunately, since the NHS has lost all my medical records, I cannot ever know for sure when the asthma first started (as in, was it caused by the pneumonia or did it predate it?), but I know I have had it most of my life. By about my early twenties, although I retained a pathetic peak flow score, I had mainly grown out of the asthma except for when I was ill. Then it kicked in with a vengeance and it seemed like every respiratory bug (aside from covid) went straight for my lungs as a weak point. I have had

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On low carb diets

I have written previously about my dietary changes in response to a borderline insulin resistance test result, so I thought I would post an update on where I am on this journey. As you can see from that graph, my weight kept dropping until I hit 52.5kg, at which point I got scared. That put me in the underweight category in terms of my BMI; more importantly, my sleep became affected and I was definitely losing muscle mass in my quads. The theory of low carb diets (by which I mean eradicating cereals, grains, sugars, and starches from your diet), is that by replacing them with nutritionally dense foods we will eat less. The reason being that we get more bang for our buck with every egg, steak, and chicken drumstick we eat. Our bodies need less food because everything we put in it has a lot of what it needs,

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On gym culture

Recently I switched gyms and it was a terrible mistake. I was really happy at my little budget gym, but the HQ payments team kept fucking up my payments which resulted in me being locked out three months in a row. Once was a mistake, twice was irritating, three times told me that they had no interest in fixing the issue, so I threw my toys out of the pram and moved to a different gym. The new gym was equidistant from my house, bigger, had more equipment, and was £4 pcm cheaper than my old gym; but still, within a week I knew I’d made a terrible mistake and wrote to my old gym manager to ask him to deal with the payments team on my behalf. Thankfully he did and I am back at my old gym and happy as larry again and getting clowned for being a dick.

On diet

Two things happened today. Firstly I saw a picture of the once supremely handsome (now vegan) Robert Downey Jr looking old, grey, and dusty as fuck; secondly, I realised that I can hang off callisthenic bars using one arm, including my bad arm/shoulder. This was previously completely impossible due to my shoulder injury. Both of these observations are related to diet. I turned vegetarian at the age of 13 or so for ethical reasons. I made the connection between the (delicious) lamb chops on my dinner plate, and the cute, fluffy lambs I would bottle feed in the spring time at my dad’s mate’s farm. I just couldn’t eat them anymore. I stayed vegetarian until I was in my mid-30s, after which I started eating some fish and meat as my health was clearly suffering as a result of spiralling food  intolerances and allergies and the beginnings of IBS. (Side note,

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