Kegels and Pelvic Floor Health: New Year

Jasmine Schmidt Health Guide
  • A few weeks ago, with the conclusion of yet another year looming in the near future, I took out my 2006 New Year’s Resolutions for a sort of year-end review. You see, in early January of 2006, I decided that I would actually write down my resolutions to better track my progress throughout the year. And it actually worked – for about a month. Every couple of nights I took out my list of resolutions (there were a whopping nine of them!) and wrote down my progress on each and every one of them.

    After the first month my tracking dwindled to every week or two, and eventually dissipated altogether. And so, after months of forgetting entirely about my resolutions, I finally pulled them out to evaluate my progress. Upon revisiting my 2006 resolutions, I realized that even after forgetting I’d ever created them, I still managed to achieve many of my resolutions.
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    This year, I ask you to join me in setting a new ear’s resolution of improved pelvic floor health (guys too – yes, you do have pelvic floors!). One key thing I’ve learned about setting goals is that one overarching statement just doesn’t do the trick. You have to follow it up with specific, attainable, and measurable steps to take. For me, that means committing to doing my Kegels regularly, taking daily cranberry supplements (believed to help prevent urinary tract infections), and striving to be ever more honest with the support people in my life, including my family and my doctor (I try, I really do, but sometimes it’s just so hard!).

    I don’t want to have nine new year’s resolutions again this year – not even close. One thing I’ve learned in the past year is that there needs to be a healthy balance between setting goals, and just letting life happen. That means I need to prioritize those things that I really want to strive for.

    I know that pelvic floor health is one of my priorities because it’s so central to everything else. Literally, it’s the very center of my being. Both my upper body and my lower body extend out from this point. Figuratively, my pelvic floor is central to my life as it is so integrated in my mental and physical well-being.

    What about you? Do you find that incontinence can affect your social life? Your sexual intimacy? Your level of physical activity? Those are pretty major areas of impact for most individuals, and – in my opinion – worth setting a goal around.

    So, while setting those 2007 resolutions, don’t forget your bladder and bowel! Set an overall goal, and then include specific steps that you can take towards improved pelvic health, such as: consuming fewer bladder irritants (such as caffeine, carbonation, and chocolate); seeking out new treatment options; or joining an incontinence online support group or forum. And take the time to write down your goal somewhere you’ll keep it – like the cover of a calendar, or in a journal or date book.

    I’ve seen time and time again, just as with my 2006 resolutions, that the simple step of writing down my resolutions makes them that much more concrete. Even if I forget about the resolutions for a while, I always have a way to revisit them.
Published On: January 08, 2007