Out of the gym & strength/mass loss....help?

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 19, 2008 8:53 PM GMT
    Hi guys,

    I've been out of the gym for several months now (about 5 months).... due to some strange health issues that have yet to be determined. I've been having issues with feeling weak, tired, strange bodily sensations (parathesias) and muscle fasiculations (twitches).

    I've been tested for MS, ALS, Lyme disease, HIV and god knows what else.... and all of my tests have come back fine. Which is a relief... (except that I still dont feel like myself yet)

    Today I was feeling curious and I went downstairs to the rack of free weights we have in my house. I noticed that I was substantially weaker than I was 5 months ago, and I know this is to be expected... as I've generally lost some mass and strength. I'm a natural ectomorph and it took me a lot of work to get to where I was before all this stuff started happening..... so maybe it should come as no surprise that i've lost as much muscle and strength as I have.

    For instance, I think I would have maxed out at 30-35 lbs, MAX on dumbell shoulder presses.... whereas I used to put up 45 lbs.

    I was wondering if anyone has a general ballpark idea of how much strength is "normal" to lose over such a period. I'm dying to go back to the gym, but I'm also a little afraid that if I go and discover some kind of new weakness, I'll freak out and think I have some kind of disorder. (yes, I am also a bit of a hypochondriac).

    Does anyone have any feedback? I'd really appreciate ANY info or experiences you all have.....
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Nov 19, 2008 9:53 PM GMT
    It is perfectly normal to lose muscle mass and strength due to lack of exercise, especially after 5 months! I stopped working out for about a month due to personal issues and got pretty out of shape. I did not lose much strength but did lose lean muscle mass.

    In the past where I've had to stop working out for whatever reason, I have lost both mass and strength. I am not sure that there is an "average" of how much strength you lose over time, I am sure it depends on the individual.

    I would say, start slow and increase the weight and/or reps each week. I started working out again about 3 weeks ago and I am actually stronger than before, hopefully I'll start seeing gains soon as well.

    So, glad your test results came out ok, don't worry too much and get your butt back to the gym icon_biggrin.gif
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    Nov 19, 2008 10:13 PM GMT
  • TexanMan82

    Posts: 893

    Nov 20, 2008 1:13 AM GMT
    So your tests have come back fine and the doctors have yet to diagnose anything over the past 5 months? And you also call yourself a hypochondriac?

    hmmmmm.......methinks nothing is wrong with you. Get back in the gym. Yes, you'll be weaker. But, that's what happens when you take 5 months off from the gym.
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    Nov 20, 2008 1:25 AM GMT
    I feel your pain. If weight lifting works the same way running does, as long as you have a good foundation or base you should be back where you were as soon as you get back into a regular exercise routine. At least that's what I'm telling myself right now. But on the other side it's what my physical therapist told me as well. icon_razz.gif
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    Nov 20, 2008 4:52 AM GMT
    That seems like a normal amount to lose in five months.

    I'm curious though, why you're staying out of the gym? Is there joint inflammation or other evidence of reactive arthritis? I wouldn't go back to the gym against a doctor's advice, but I might seek a second opinion.

    It's probably irrelevant, but I went through a weird undiagnosed period like that when I was 17. Opinions varied from "latent syphilis" to "laziness" - until they started talking about amputating my leg. In retrospect, it was probably lyme disease, but that hadn't yet been discovered. The point is that the vast majority of bacteria and viruses are still completely unknown. (Although the vast majority of them are also harmless.)

    But if there is no medical reason to refrain, it seems like a good idea to keep up some sort of workout. If you're not yet up to lifting heavy, why not do some sort of circuit training with light weights?
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    Nov 20, 2008 5:10 AM GMT
    mabe u have Mono did it start with a cold??