Back in the groove

It’s been a while, but I’m finally getting back into the workout groove. Little backstory…

Since about the end of January, I’ve been battling issues with my left shoulder. I don’t recall a specific time when it started hurting. There was never a moment when I felt a tear or a pop. One night I simply tried scratching my back, and I simply couldn’t get my arm in the position I needed to…it simply wouldn’t go that far, and certainly not without a lot of pain. I’ve narrowed the cause down to either overworking it in the gym, shoveling the heavy wet snow this past winter (I have a significant length of sidewalk in my front yard), or a combination of the two. As anyone would do in 2018, I went to the internet to self-diagnose. Everything I found pointed to a rotator cuff injury, so I started doing some exercises for that. After a few months, I was still in pain, so I finally went to the doctors to discuss it. His impression was the same,  and diagnosed it as a rotator cuff injury and prescribed physical therapy for it.

After about 6 weeks of physical therapy (twice a week sessions and prescribed exercises on my own), along with 9 steroid patches on my shoulder, it’s finally at a point where I’m getting back to “normal”.  The PT thought it to be a supraspinatus issue…not necessarily a full tear, but possibly a tear/fraying of some sort. The PT is supposed to report back to my doctor…if issues continue, some sort of imaging is next (though I can’t have an MRI because of the steel in my chest…so I’m not sure what that imaging will be 😋).

Due to the injury, I had to cut my gym routine way back. In fact, for a few months, I had to not focus on weights at all, and focused solely on cardio. But cardio alone just isn’t my thing, so I kind of slacked on my overall routine. I was hitting snooze when my alarm went off rather than getting up to go to the gym, I was making excuses not to go, and ultimately I could tell physically that I was slacking when I looked in the mirror. Well, about a week and a half ago now, I changed all that.

When I went grocery shopping this past week, I cut out all the shit, and for snacks, I bought some healthy food. The only time I’ve “slacked” is during the weekend, but even then, I supplemented it with bike riding and yard work.

This week I was finally able to do free weight bench presses again. The weight isn’t what it was (I was previously up to 240lbs), but I need to slowly build it back up.

For post workout recovery (and for the past week, my breakfast), I’ve been drinking protein shakes. 32g of protein powder in 1.5 cups of milk, makes for a very filling meal. I don’t get hungry again until mid-morning, when I have my usual apple as a snack.

One advantage I have of working where I do, is being able to take breaks when I’m not busy. Working on a college campus, there are almost an unlimited amount of places to take a walk, and I make sure to get up and do so in both the morning and afternoon. I track my steps, with my daily goal being 10k (I’m changing that to 12k though), and generally it’s no match for my daily walks and gym cardio combination. In fact, it’s 7:19am when I’m writing this, and I’m already at 4137 steps for the day.

Overall, I’m on the mend, but most importantly, I’m getting back into the groove. I’m down a few pounds already, and after only a week and a half of getting back into this routine, I am already seeing some changes when I look in the mirror. Here’s to leading a healthy life and staying active!

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