Seaside Yoga, Beach Biking, and Serene Inspiration – by Ashley Boynes-Shuck


“Arthritis Ashley goes to the beach…without her Arthritis!” could have been the caption for my recent picture-perfect trip to Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. Approximately one year after marrying on the shores of a different island (Sanibel,) my husband and I took a nice vacation to Hilton Head, where I felt better than I have in years — maybe ever.

Do you believe that I, “Arthritis Ashley” biked over 10 miles, two days in a row? Do you believe that I took an hourlong morning walk on the beach? Do you believe that I got up and did morning beach yoga one day? 

It’s true. I’m on minimum medications, an almost all-natural regimen, and, here I am, doing beach yoga and bike-riding like never before.

I am hopefully not “jinxing” myself, and I am not writing this to “brag,” but rather to encourage hope and inspire: it IS possible. I credit the relaxing atmosphere of the beach, and my calm, positive mindset for creating healing energy while on my trip.

I tried to bring those things home with me: a sense of well-being and serenity. Sometimes, it works, sometimes, it doesn’t. My joints don’t always love me after a workout session with my personal trainer, and, they certainly hated me after that 12-hour car-ride HOME from the beach, but, I’ve been trying to show my body gratitude and love instead of just always feeling negative towards it.

So, getting proper sleep, eating more healthfully, and treating myself to massages now and then have become the norm. So has a feeling of gratitude, and NOT focusing on my health or lack thereof. 

Unfortunately, I couldn’t bring the beach home with me, but that week at the shore showed me that I can be relatively “healthy” and “normal.” That encouragement and motivation was just what the doctor ordered. I hope that you prescribe this kind of hope to yourself this summer, too.


Stay Well,

Ashley Boynes-Shuck

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2 thoughts on “Seaside Yoga, Beach Biking, and Serene Inspiration – by Ashley Boynes-Shuck

  1. Hi Ashley,

    Glad to know that you are feeling great! That is very inspiring. I stumbled on your blog and think that it is wonderful- so positive. You mention that you are on an minimal medication and an almost all natural regimen. Can you please share more detail on this? I know that everyone’s arthritis is different. I too was on minimal medication (plaquenil & mobic for about 8 years) which kept things under control quite well. My doctor added sulfasalazine and I eventually dropped the Plaquenil (generic caused upset stomach and I could not afford the “real” stuff due to insurance changes). Sulfasalazine and occasional Mobic worked pretty well for about two years and I was fine for almost a year with only Mobic (occasionally). I have been in the midst of a flair for about 4 months now and am back on the sulfasalazine with Mobic every day. Flair started after a flu-like illness and a period of extreme stress (working 12 hour days). I would like to avoid adding anything other medication if I can. Anyway, anything you can share regarding your natural regimen would be greatly appreciated.

    Thank you,


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