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It has now been a month since my surgery, and I finally feel normal again. I have been taking it easy since the doctor told me on July 3rd at my follow-up appointment that it would be 3-4 weeks until I can pick up weights again, and that light cardio is okay until then. I can’t tell you how many times when I went to the gym just to walk on the treadmill or use the elliptical or bike that I desperately wanted to break out into a run, or go and grab the dumbbells!
Since I had the surgery, I have lost five pounds. A part of me wishes that I had measured my body fat percentage before, so I could tell how much of the weight lost was muscle mass and how much was fat… but the other part of me thinks I’m better off not knowing. I think maybe half of those pounds must have been muscle, since I have not done any strength, and the cardio I have done probably burned some of my muscle mass.
This past Saturday, when I went to the gym, I decided to pick up the 5-pound weights and work my arms. I did various isolated biceps, triceps and shoulder exercises. I didn’t want to risk it and lift heavier since the doctor gave me until another week or two to lift normally again, but I was dying to do something. It felt weird to be doing bicep curls with 5-pound weights, when I had worked up to 17.5-pound dumbbells before, but it felt great to be doing something, at least! I did 25-30 reps of each exercise in sets of three–since I am not advised to lift much heavier yet I am pretty much just working on muscle endurance rather than muscle strength until I can up the weights again. I haven’t lost all my muscle mass, so I’d like to do whatever I can to preserve the muscle I have until I can work strength again.
In between sets, I did active rests of body-weight squats and lunges. After a few sets of each, my legs were shaking.
I left the gym feeling great! It felt good to be doing some strength, as little as it was.
Today, is a different story. I had gone a month without working out my legs more than just walking, so I am definitely exepriencing DOMS bad today! It’s difficult for me to sit down and stand up without groaning. But it feels good to be sore again!
I think that once I am able to lift more again that I will re-start Jamie Eason’s LiveFit Trainer. I liked the program when I was completing it before, and it is a good program for starting out (since it will be like I am starting all over again). I’m thinking I can start this within the next 2-3 weeks. Hopefully all goes well with it this time around!