Laid Up Action Hero

on April 19, 2010 in Misc

Most of my Layla workout plan has pretty much come to a screeching halt.

It’s driving me crazy.   Since my injury three weeks ago I have not been able to exercise from the waist up, and I still can’t work out my entire upper body for the next month or so.   Of course fencing is completely out of the question.

weight lifting

And this at a time when I was FINALLY starting to develop enough upper body strength to do actual chin-ups.   I’d assumed that in May I’d move on to indoor rock climbing and next into climbing buildings and rappelling down them, just like Layla can.

But nope, nothin’ doin’ for now.   Instead I’m semi-laid up and out of action.  That’s what having fractured ribs and torn cartilage has done to me.   Not only can I not lift any weights or do push-ups or handstands, I’m not even supposed to be lifting heavy grocery bags, for cryin’ out loud.   I tried to do a few different ab exercises and quickly had to nix those too.   Talk about everything in the body being connected – just working my abs hurt my chest.   As for upper body or waist stretches – they’re a distant memory.

And the funny thing is, I’m not at heart very athletic or diligent about exercise.   It’s my Layla plan that really was making me develop some great physical habits.   Still, for all of my adult life I have always STRETCHED. Every day, sometimes a couple times a day, I stretch the way a cat does – to loosen up and feel good.   If my back gets stiff, I reflexively stretch.   But now?   Nothing doing, not if I want to heal.   Oh, I still try to stretch as much as possible, but as soon as I feel a sharp PING I stop.

You may have noticed by now that exercise deprivation has made me cranky and whiny.

Thank God for my good old ballet/dance training.   It gives me a whole repertoire of exercises I can do while standing and for moving only from the waist down.   I can also do some floor exercises and stretch my legs and hips.   These really have been a life saver.   When my body feels better, my mood brightens and I’m a nicer person to be around. 

Irish dancers

Of course I look like one of those weird Celtic folk dancers with feet and legs jittering away while my upper body remains stiff as a board.   Happily no one is around to see me do this.

This week will be my first full-time back to work week since my injury.   I figure one way to get through it will be to go downstairs during my lunch hour to my office building’s exercise room and do whatever exercises are possible.   It’ll be my first time down there since my injury.

There’s one thing I’ve already resolved:   As soon as I’m able I’m going to work out my upper body like crazy.   I’ll double and triple everything I had been doing for more strength.   I will be able to pull my self up a building like freakin’ Spiderman.   I’ll do stuff even Layla can’t do.

And that will make me so happy.

2 Responses to “Laid Up Action Hero”

  1. Hart says:

    Helena-your frustration is palpable! I’m so sorry, hon! One thing I learned 18 months ago when I broke my hand–worry about getting back FULL range of motion BEFORE worrying about the strength. You’re right to miss the stretching… and once you haven’t stretched for a while, it is HUGE effort to get back to your full motion. Any MUSCLE work you do before you have that, will perhaps keep you from EVER getting that full range of motion back. So while I admire your enthusiasm, and want you to get back to it–range of motion FIRST, then strengthening…

  2. Helena says:

    Hart — A broken hand? How tough that must have been for you! And since you’re the voice of experience I’ll absolutely take your advice and work on range of motion and stretching before I do any strength stuff.