Staying motivated while recovering from injury...

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 29, 2012 3:18 PM GMT
    Before people start posting that I am looking for sympathy, that is not my intent.

    Today was the first day I was able to go back to the gym after injuring my arm. My trainer and I focused on legs and abs.

    I have already had some setbacks these past few months which are inexcusable, but personal. Today visiting the gym with this fracture and the limited mobility was just heartbreaking.

    I know that my situation is not unique or special, so my question is to those of you that have pushed past injuries and kept moving forward. What was your game plan? Do you have any tips/strategies to stay motivated?

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    Dec 29, 2012 4:46 PM GMT
    With time, you wear the list of injuries you overcame like a soldier wear medals.

    And injuries are perfect opportunity to focus on part of training you neglect just because you don't like them, and use the lack of time as an excuse to avoid it (abs ?).

  • MidwesternKid

    Posts: 1167

    Dec 29, 2012 5:13 PM GMT
    I had some terrible shoulder problems when I messed up my arm swing in Volleyball and I took two years off from playing indoor and only played beach during the summer (The balls in beach are bigger and a lighter leather). I couldn't do any kind of lifting because it would hurt my shoulder, so I picked up running. I never thought I would enjoy running but I can't get enough of it. You just have to find an alternative when an injury happens and stick with it till it becomes habit.
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    Dec 29, 2012 5:32 PM GMT
    Last year at this time i was waiting on rotator cuff surgery my second time this time it was my right shoulder. On the day of surgery,January 25th i weighed in 205lbs. My surgery occured shortly after returning from Iraq. Having been gone a year and trying to make up lost time the gym was the last thing on my mind. I gained about 20 very unwanted pounds. this time around i immediately started walking almost 15 miles a week on the treadmill two weeks after surgery. when i finally got back to work July 25th i weighed 190lbs. Point is take your time and use the injury to help you focus more don't let it get you down.
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    Dec 29, 2012 10:20 PM GMT
    Sorry about the arm, ConQuest. So far I have been lucky, but I often wonder how I would react to an injury that kept me out of the gym. Particularly when I sometimes feel I'm only treading water in reaching my goals to begin with.

    That said, I think there is some good advice here. Take the time to create a plan that you can hit hard once your injury improves and challenge your trainer to find other creative ways for you to train in the meantime. (This is where he'll truly earn his money and show you how good he is.)

    Also, don't let the diet fall to shit. (When I'm down, that's the toughest thing to keep in check.)

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    Dec 30, 2012 1:33 AM GMT
    Setbacks are "character building" experiences because they test your resolve and determination to ultimately succeed in what you're trying to accomplish. I deal with injuries by setting challenging (not unrealistic) longer term goals that give me time to rehab. Usually I come back from an injury wanting it more. Whereas, after going through the same grind day after day, week after week, month after month I can start to feel a little burned out and I wonder exactly why it is I continue to inflict torture upon myself. Don't stop moving and your progress won't come to a screeching halt.
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    Jan 23, 2013 7:32 AM GMT
    Mate, I totally know how you feel.
    12 months ago a rotator cuff injury turned into adhesive capsulitis which left me virtually disabled on my dominant side shoulder for 9 months. I have been in PT the whole year and only about 2 months ago have i been able to begin upper body workouts. I lost a lot of strength and tone and flexibility.

    But I was told to walk or cycle at least 30-60 mins everyday and that saved me. I didnt gain too much weight but I did fight depression through our winter. I tried to rush the rehab time and caused further injury so I have learned that you cannot rush the healing.
    I boosted my vitamin intake and ate a lot more raw foods and greens and I am told I healed in quicker time than normal for the severity of the problem.

    So in short, take it easy, muscles have memory and I am really seeing that now. Dont rush it, you will learn more about your body as you heal. "Core" has been a focus for me for a while now and that is helping a lot too. I think that when we are young we do things incorrectly, that our bodies can handle. Its different as we age. I used to be interested in what my old trainer called 'ego' workouts but having had a couple of injuries in the past few years I am now focused on functionality.
    Your body will let you know what you can handle... listen to it. Its the only one you will have.

    All the best.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jan 23, 2013 7:56 AM GMT
    lots of good advice here. Basically - keep moving! and keep the habit of going to the gym to do something . . . get well soon! I know how frustrating it can be
  • xysx

    Posts: 308

    Jan 23, 2013 8:08 AM GMT
    bicep tendonitis with impingement syndrome bought me 9 months PT and inability to blast into shoulder workouts.
    tennis elbow : I.m looking at another 6 mos to a year because I refuse to accept the 18 month prognosis til healed;, wearing gauntlet brace and forearm strap. t support, isolate, ad trick the muscle band fibers from aggravating the ligaments and tendons.
    Torn PL in R knee., bought me another 6 weeks off of ability to work legs, and 6 weeks of PT

    What do these things all provide me with aside of being a pain in the ass and major set backs/? Answer::::they teach me that I am stupid to be so overly motivated that I dont' stop and take heed to the early warning signs of poor form, improper weight, or inadequate supplementation, such as gelatin for the joints, glucosamine/condrointin, and that form LEADS function. Meantime, I practice inovative patience, work on abs, stretchings, yoga, isolated low weight PT level stuff where needed, and maintenance weight stabiliztion for areas that are still solid. I modify my workouts, and humble myself repeadedly. they teach me that I have goals and am often too hard headed in persevering toward those ultimate goals due to ego and not being mindful of listening to what my body is telling me.
    I want to be more. I have to have patients to get there, and do it right, as frustrating as that is for me at time. at least t keeps my workouts fresh and always dynamic, and innovative,/ keeps my muscles guessing, and keeps things stumulating.. after all, its all about pushing the limit and recreating yourself at any given moment.
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    Jan 23, 2013 1:34 PM GMT
    Well, since this got revived, I will update.

    I did sort of spiral downward for a couple of weeks. My trainer got sick, I got busy and we couldn't meet up. I ate a whole bunch of crap.

    This week I think I've snapped myself back to me again. I have exercised both early morning and afternoon and have eaten clean every day.

    I have an X-Ray on my arm today to see if the fracture is healed. - I also have that adhesive capsulitis (or whatever that is) - which means I still have about a 40 degree angle that I can't straighten my arm.

    I am left handed which makes it worse. I feel focused again and I hope I can keep it. I think I can get myself back to where I was in a couple of months if I push. Hopefully by this summer I will be seeing progress again.

    Thanks for all the comments.
  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16508

    Jan 23, 2013 1:38 PM GMT
    Glad to hear you are improving!

    I wrote extensively here on RJ and received a LOT of support after my Staph infection during the fall of 2010 and my arm surgery. It drove me CRAZY about recovery, but was amazed how quickly I was back in the gym and by Christmas it looked like it almost hadn't happened!

    For me, I found a way to exercise something! I used my left arm as soon as I could.. and there I was doing my dumbell curls and push ups before I knew it. I thought I looked like crap for several weeks, but the feelings I had as I started making progress again was amazing.

    Do what you can, follow your doctors orders, but find a way! You will be successful!!!

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jan 23, 2013 5:58 PM GMT
    I'm glad you're back to exercising and eating clean. I had a recent setback myself and I think the key is to recognize that although you may have limitations, there ARE still things you can do. So do what you can do and don't use limitations as an excuse to give up completely! I have faith that you're going to do great!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jan 24, 2013 7:42 PM GMT
    ConQuest said I also have that adhesive capsulitis (or whatever that is) - which means I still have about a 40 degree angle that I can't straighten my arm.

    I had that early last year. Otherwise known as "frozen shoulder." You get it when you favor an injured shoulder too much. The tendons and the "capsule" surrounding the joint basically shrink up from disuse. I did lol a bit when looking it up as at least one website said it was common among middle-aged to elderly women. Great.icon_razz.gif

    I got a cortisone shot then worked the PT's exercises religiously and it was noticeably improved after a couple of weeks. That was when I started my workout regimen - figured I was up and in the gym several mornings a week might as well continue it. It took a couple of months for it to be mostly gone. Now I'm as good as new.
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    Jan 24, 2013 8:03 PM GMT
    I broke the scaphoid bone of my left wrist when I was 23, a bad fall on concrete during an pole vault at 18 feet.

    6 weeks in cast full arm, then 6 weeks just forearm cast.

    The cast hold the tumb separatly :

    So as soon as my cast was reduce to forearm only, I started bench pressing again (at 40 pounds at first), using the cast thumb to hold the bar.
    Was also doing push up, to lose as little grip as I could ( a pole vaulter is in danger without strong grip).
    And isometric work for my thumb against the cast.

    So when the cast was removed, I already had the grip of a guy one month into rehab, was able to extent my arm nearly 95% of completely straight.

    Pole vaulted 14 feet after two weeks after, and 16.5 after four.

    Yet it took me one year to stop feel pain in my elbow tendons when extending, and some 2 years to be able to walk again on my hand putting my hand flat on ground, as I had lost a lot amplitude putting my hand backward, and it take fucking long time to rehab shortened tendons.

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    May 13, 2013 5:00 AM GMT
    Work your non-injured areas extra hard while you're waiting for your injured body parts to fully recover! After injuring my elbow and shoulder, I focused on my abs and lower body, and being able to see progress in spite of the injury was motivating enough to keep going back.