The Miracle Worker

Is it hyperbole to say someone is a miracle worker? Does it go too far?

I wonder after a consultation with Josh Noble of Noble Mind And Body here in Oakville.

A registered acupuncturist who is guided by the diagnostic process of traditional Chinese medicine, Josh has been working in the health and fitness field since 2001.

So here’s the story.

Josh is invited to run a featured workshop for the athletes at The CyclingCentre.Ca by coach Petrina Tulissi. I’m thinking this is a nice touch but I’ve got little interest in traditional Chinese medicine but as the talk is on one of our spinning nights I show up.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Josh (in photo) is a dedicated practitioner and wants nothing more than to get his message about how to improve our health and fitness and you can’t help but be impressed with his knowledge and interest in his clients.

During the talk he hits on some of my health hot buttons like liver function (always comes up as a question during my blood tests), blood sugar (I’m hypoglycaemic and have been for almost all my life) and he starts talking about how our glandular systems contribute to pumping stress-related chemicals into our blood stream that make it difficult to recover from high-pressure situations (like pedalling full out during a time trial).

Josh offers a free initial consultation to the audience so I think what the heck why not give the guy a chance?

Silly me. I show up for my consultation and Josh takes a history (which thanks to the open-heart operation nine years ago is complex to say the least). As the consultation goes on Josh asks if I am aware that my spine seems overly straight and explains that this straightening of the natural curve of the spine could be caused by the stress forced on the body after I was stitched up after surgery. Makes sense to me.

He asks if I notice a bulging in my gut when doing sit-ups and it’s something that happens a lot when I’m doing yoga. I’m amazed. Josh explains this bulging could lead to a hernia and may contribute to a loss of blood flow to the legs which is critical information for someone who cycles for hours at a time. Again this is new information but makes sense.

Josh also picks up on the obvious that I’m built funny with one shoulder higher than the other and the opposite hip following suit. This can make a bit fit a challenge.

Finally, and here it comes folks, Josh puts his hands on my ribs where they attach to my sternum and rib by rib puts a little pressure on each one. One of my ribs, just over my heart, hurts when he applies pressure. He traces the rib around still applying pressure which I can feel. Ribs on either side of the affected rib aren’t sore to touch nor are the ribs on the opposite side of my chest.

This is a revelation.

I don’t think it takes heart surgeon to figure out the pain I’ve been experiencing in my chest when I ride (which hasn’t reacted positively to the occasional blast of nitroglycerin when acting up during vigorous cycling) has been caused by the sore rib (likely injured in my fall down the stairs a year ago).

Under the stress of all-out pedalling my special snowflake sore spots (shoulder and rib) make their presence known as I work myself into near exhaustion and produce a pain in the chest which has been a source of continuous worry.

Here’s the payoff:

If I had gone to see Josh earlier I could have saved myself three hospital visits to do two standard stress tests and one invasive cardiolite stress test (I get injected with dye with MRI before and after exercise) and two consults with my cardiologist.

A miracle worker indeed as far as I’m concerned. Thanks to Josh I can now go back to riding with less fear and more enthusiasm.

That’s a big deal. Maybe there is something to this traditional Chinese medicine after all!