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Bonita Cobb

Life

My name is Bonita Cobb. I'm 57 years old. Twenty-two years ago, I was diagnosed with arthritis. Since then, I've been fortunate enough to have the care of some good doctors, including rheumatologists. I've seen a number of physiotherapists off and on, been given help from occupational therapists, and gone through the Self-Management course offered by the Arthritis Society. I'm grateful for the help I've received. The problem is that none of these has dealt with either my aerobic fitness or my strength. They've concentrated on bringing my
arthritis under control and improving my range of motion, but haven't dealt with actual fitness. So, over the years, I have become less and less fit, less confident in my physical ability, less able to do the things I want.

As my strength and conditioning coach, Cris is showing me how to change all of that. In roughly three months, I've gone from 5 minutes on an exercise bicycle every other day to 45 minutes every day. And I've started some resistance training. Cris's coaching has made an immense difference in my ability to do those everyday things that others take for granted. (For example, the other day, without thinking, I went up a flight of stairs like a normal person, instead of like a two-year-old. I haven't been able to do that for years.)

My energy and stamina are way up, and my pain is way down. And it's all been accomplished without the sore muscles and fatigue that I've come to expect from exercise. The most surprising thing about this whole experience is that Cris hasn't tried to fit me into some pre-determined exercise mould. Instead of using buzz-words and the latest trend in fitness, Cris has used lactate testing and heart rate monitoring to test my fitness levels and to determine when I'm ready for the next step. He has also asked good questions and actually listened to the answers -- the sign of a good teacher. This combination of accurate scientific measurements, Cris's expertise, and his ability to listen have been the keys to my success. So I would say, without hesitation that Cris's coaching isn't just for elite athletes. It's also for us little old ladies with knotted up muscles, sore joints, and a long history of not exercising.

Results/ Bonita Cobb

When Bonita first started she could ride for 5 minutes at a heart rate of 90 beats per minute with blood lactate at 1.6 mmol/l. Now she can ride for 60 minutes at 120 beats per minute with a lower lactate level and pedaling faster!

Bonita made big initial gains in a relatively short time. We chose the bike because it is non-impact and non-weight bearing allowing her exercise with ease. There is no known cure for arthritis yet, but carefully applied exercise can help regain a substantial amount of mobility lost in those with arthritis. Bonita also does strengthening and flexibility exercises and has improved her nutrition.

After one year of continuous exercise, Bonita has reduced body fat and increased her strength significantly.

-Cris LaBossiere

2003-2004 Rhino Fitness

 
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For more information contact: clabossiere@rhinofitness.ca