If you are a woman over fifty, you are well aware of the issues regarding bone density.
About five years ago, I had my first bone density test. The results revealed osteopenia in my spine, although my hips were fine. The doctor I was seeing at the time prescribed Boniva, which used to be endorsed by Sally Field. After reading about the drug, I decided that it didn’t sound like something I wanted to take. It’s tough on the esophagus, the stomach, and the bones of the jaw—and I’m simply not a big fan of taking meds in the first place.
I decided that I would continue taking calcium supplements and boost my time in the gym. If my bones continued to weaken, I would agree to go on medication. Since bone density tests are usually recommended once every two years, that’s how long I gave myself to try to change things on my own.
My regimen was as follows:
• 1000-1500 mg of food-based calcium every day
• Two weight-training sessions with a personal trainer per week
• Two spin classes per week
• Short walks (hills included) three to five times a week
After two years, I had my second test. It indicated that everything was within acceptable ranges and I no longer fell into the osteopenia category. Not only didn’t my bones get any worse, they became stronger.
Since then, I’ve added one more spin class to my workout routine and replaced weight-training with Pilates, which is great for the back and core.
Last week, I had a third test, and lo and behold—my bone density has increased even more. I know it seems weird to get excited about improving my bone mass, but this news delights me. This is the only body I have, and I plan to keep it in the best possible shape for as long as I can. If I can manage to do that without taking medication, better still.