vicarz: (Wild Buttercup)
I think I did a "final" post on the tag "labral tear issues," but it is literally the 1-year mark so I thought I would formally do a, or another, webedone post.

The surgery was less traumatic than expected. The twinge of pain I used to get that felt like stitches or muscle tearing no longer occurs. I feel no pain - I regularly stretch and can bang away on the hip joint and while I can or imagine I can fear some tightness to this day, it doesn't show on flexibility measures and nothing hurts.

I've set new records in the gym.
Squat 435 (likely my actual max)
Deadlift 425 for a double (not sure how far the max is over that as I fix form issues)
(edit - conventional deadlift...when I was in pre-surgery pain, I switched to sumo-stance to avoid the hip pain. Not only am I doing more, but in a different way. I no longer do sumo and don't mind the idea...but also don't see any significant advantages to the style either)
Both my OP and bench are the same at 155 and 235 respectively, not very related to the hip issue - all said I reached my personal goal of lifting maxes totaling over 1k. I'm not quitting yet, obviously. I am a tad fat and went from a 30 to 32" waist / clothes, something I should address more but don't care about enough to stop the restaurants and booze.

But the surgery...duh. If I had it to do over I would have done it sooner. I've never heard of such an easy ride from others who got the surgery and I'm not sure why - I know I researched my surgeon and he was one of the best, but was I an easy case? Is the technology improved? Am I actually dying on an operating table and the last year is just a feeling I get in a chemical dream state while my brain dies?

Conclusion: surgery was a success.
There are unlikely to be any later developments that merit writing or talking about this issue in anything but a historical perspective.
vicarz: (Wild Buttercup)
I'm happy to report not much. I've been bad about reading...seeing the girl daily I think an emotional need I had is met, making me less interested in reporting and monitoring here. I feel less alone writing? I don't miss feeling alone. It hurts.

The gym is fun - I lost a lot of time being sick, but not really any gains. I just realized I'm coming up on a year since surgery (I may do a labral tear update in case any of those folks still follow, one posted a picture of her scars). I've passed all but one max and am pain free. Pain free - it's incredible.

My only stopping / lame issue is my overhead press. I got stuck at 155 somehow, so I've done a reset to lower weight to increase 5 lbs a month with the theory my body will get used to increases again instead of just hammering on volume at the same weight. My bench is a bit stuck too, but on both I'm spending more time developing my back and fixing form. I also use a very narrow grip due to enormous elbow pain, and I'm trying to return to a more normal grip or at least experiment to see how that impacts the lift.

Gains - it's a silly chorus strength people chant, but a good one. If you're not getting gains, stfu as you're not improving and all your knowledge is not producing measurable change. Lots of people debate various aspects of what makes you stronger, but if you're not able to apply your brilliance, you might as well be the old guy swinging his legs on the yogaballs. So me and gains - I'm making them slowly, which is fine. At the 1-year mark it's maybe time to look at my gains in light of setbacks, and consider goal setting. What do I want to do? How much time do I want to train and eat specific things? How much restriction on drinking is worth x gains? What is the benefit from strength x? How the hell do I work running or cadio ability into this mess, and do I really need to? What should my goals be?

Gym - been working out with the girl a lot as she's over her surgery and in recovery for real mode. We hit Ballston a lot as it's often convenient. Plus is parking and near everythingism, downside is dudes in there are huge and squatting 315 or deadlifting ... I've seen guys repping 600 in there. I do meet people there, 2 weeks a go a white haired fit dude who was repping 315 with pauses and perfect form, last week a 17 year old guy who was front-squatting 225. As you are in the same place you are likely to make friends seeing the same folks doing the same things. Fun.

I finally bought weightlifting shoes but don't feel any different.

House:
Needless to say I did not move in last weekend. I don't think I'll be moving this, not even partial. There aren't stairs though they've started putting them in, there isn't heat, a/c, or hot water. No sinks, though water runs in the tub (and possibly the shower). Master shower needs a glass wall. The fan was set to turn on with the light, so I reminded him ohhellno the fan must be operable without the light. No kitchen other than the floor, no living room floor, no powder room, no closet or doors under stairs...what is happening?

Every day you can see work but it's always small. I know he lost staff, but I show up and see painted doors and frames, cleaned bricks, all the materials moved into the basement...it looks like it is close to done but never really moves forward. I was going to move in September.

Moving is something I sort of dread too. Another reason to move in stages is security - I need the house to be safe for stuff before I move things there, though I'm considering just not having things worth stealing. My grandfather's rifle isn't worth $150, but is priceless to me and someone breaking into a home would likely steal a .22 bolt rifle however worthless it is as a weapon. I have to get net access, cable (and due to triple play I guess a phone line still, which I like) but I can't plan when I never have an accurate move date. Then I need a security system with video...but I don't know what to get, who to pay to monitor, and I'm not about to put something in there before I live there.

Work is going splendidly. That big CA hearing I did is my one heartburn - waiting for that decision and I care a lot.

Tee hee

Aug. 20th, 2015 06:39 pm
vicarz: (Golds)
On bench today I was able to do a double with 225, then 4 more singles. Truly I would have preferred a spot, but each intense guy beside me was knee deep in their fuckoffheadphones.

Still, that 225 was totally mine today. I started squats etc. based on not being able to bench press 225. I figured if I could do that it would be enough. When I was going to do that weight for the first time, I wanted a friend to witness it so I could "prove" I did it. I had no witnesses today, nor are any necessary when I know it's what I can do - not a fluke.

I counted my maxes and I can lift about 945 lbs or more. I think 1k would be nice, then a real 1k where it all happens in a day. Then more. You know what would be a fun bench? 275. More fun than that? 315. That would be pretty.

I'm not as flexible as I ever was, but the absence of pain has helped me reach old and now new levels of strength. I'm calling the labral tear issue "dead" as while I have a tiny residual lack of flexibility, the pain is gone and my strength is back - if not greater. Overall I'm better than I was today than before surgery.

Hmm what can I get chopped up next!?
vicarz: (Golds)
One product remaining of my labral tear reconstruction surgery is I spend a bunch of time around the stretching mats. This means I get to see a lot of special gym snowflakes who are more advanced than people using free weights, lever machine weights, or even cable-pull machines. I get to see the sit-up crunching arm swing masters, ball bouncers and swingers (what a party), and beached dolphin formnitions.

At Rosslyn, I stretch by the GHR machine. http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/detail/view/name/glute-ham-raise
People constantly get on the thing and...do sit ups. They hang in the air and do sit ups, so they’re literally upside-down on the thing. Worse, this is...really easy to do. I suppose you could make it like a reverse leg lift, but rather than keep the core extended and stable, they hunch up, swing their arms, and basically hurl their head towards their feet. Do people not feel momentum? Don’t people notice the lack of muscle soreness in their abs when they’re done? Isn’t this like the middle-school sit-up where you brace your feet so if you do a lot of “sit-ups,” rather than sore abs your quads get tired?

The most frequently done-wrong exercises seem to center around sit-ups (#1 by a wide margin), push ups (use dumbbells and alternate hands!), and leg press (extensions are close). Sit-ups are done by people who haven’t yet discovered the concept of fat reduction, who think somehow the fat around their belly will magically fuel their flopping-leg-ups into washboards. With a machine, there are countless ways to do things wrong - but most wrongs involve repeated clanking the machine, which would otherwise be noiseless if the thing were used properly.

I think a great key to “Am I an idiot in the gym” would have to be “Have I seen anyone do what I’m doing in competitions in the past 20 years,” or “Have I seen anyone do this, like this, in the gym within the last 5 years.” I mean old school is awesome, but it’s still being done. I know the gym takes a lot of research, and I’m not great about doing the research either, but it’s just always stunning to me how people stay stupid so long.

It’s like politics.

I did it wrong for a long time too. I worked out in a gym of morons, doing incline bench press on a universal machine - there were no free weights. Then when that gym closed, I moved to another and became MASTER OF THE SMITH MACHINE. On the plus side, I saw a white haired man with big muscles working out, making me realize age != death; additionally I felt strong and realized I liked sticking out as strong. A major upside was dating a gym instructor (briefly) and getting a LOT of free coaching from staff (great gym contract). The downside was doing it wrong, more times, for a long time. The final upside was they installed a free weight rack and I discovered...I sucked. It took time but I realized free weights were better than my “big weights lifted with help” philosophy.

The fact I used to do leg press, smith machine, and other idiotic-misplaced-ego-makers is why I’m so intolerant of that lunacy today I’m sure.

But it’s amusing to see all the doingitwrong crowd. They’re a diverse racial community, but homogenous no terms of age and gender - middle-aged to old men.

Oh, how is my hip besides swishy? I think I’m stronger than before surgery and nearly as flexible. I’m now at the point it’s hard to do this stretchy shit because I feel...competent. It’s been so long I’ve forgotten that it used to hurt when I lifted weights.

Somewhere between my friend blowing by and being hundreds of pounds stronger, while much of the time I’m hundreds of pounds of lifting stronger than people around me, I realize that what I do is a silly hobby that is no better than running, swimming, or anything else athletic. Once upon a time I liked strength training because the workouts were short...now it can be 2 hours in the gym alone, plus recovery time of much, much more. It’s pointless but my hobby nonetheless.
vicarz: (Golds)
Posting because poor Veronica probably can't stand any more of my whine-bragging about how gym-tired I am because I'm so ragingly obviously proud of it.

I'm at or above where I was on all my lifts. I think it ... would be time to throw in the labral tear tag, but I still feel it, am still tight in some weird ways, and still doing that yogashit because of it.

I've learned a little from yogashit. I have some moves that warm me up from completely cold, enabling more morning workouts and under less than ideal conditions. I think I need...no I know I need to research a better warm-up routine (maybe scan Cressey) and save the wacky stretchy crap for the end of my workout. Working out in the morning would make for a nice routine - opens up the whole day.

So, scanning videos and Mike links I found a bunch of info debating buttwink and what to do about it (or whether to do anything) and I walked away with a new mission to really arch my back on my squats. Mike was notorious for calling me on my form, but I was still being the worst kind of stubborn; trying to keep my "big" lifts while only fixing form as an afterthought. So, since I was in rehab anyway, and since I pulled a hamstring in rehab, I upped the reps and really tried to nail the form. So now my squats are squats, good form only asshole, then reps, then front squats, and if I really am still alive lunches. In so doing, I'm arching the shit out of my back and trying to hold it the whole time (I used to just arch, but it was more a shoulder movement). The tricks I learned on setting up bench helped too - trying to squeeze the shoulders together while also arching as if my I could stick my ass on my back. Then the icing is trying to push my legs apart / spread the floor to keep my ankles from rolling and my knees from buckling.

And I think I'm having success. With what I think was good form, subject to review, today was
Squats for warm-ups and 5 at 285; 5x5 at 225, front squats 135 at 5x10 (working on that from scratch), and lunches with 2x30lb dumbbells 3x10 each side (one side at a time, not alternating of course).

And my ass is tired on the side, my quads are tired, and shit my back was tired when I started from Thur's deadlifts.

I need to get some more equipment. Sadly I still have sore elbows from my one return to the heavy bag for only 3 rounds. Seems that shit's permanent...but hey surgery is going so well, maybe I should revisit the elbows' issues?

This...isn't worth writing about but it feels so intense right now. I'm still pumped with endorphins, hard. I still feel great, strong, happy, confident, even though the guy before me was squatting around 400 while injured.

Labral? I am far better off than I was. I am beyond happy I did the surgery - it's a no brainer. I write this because I'm so happy with the results and my gym time that I'm in danger of forgetting what I had to do to get here, how different things were a short time ago. Labral tear - it doesn't hurt to squoot anymore. I can pick things up off the floor. It's been 6 months and I'm probably stronger now than I was before the surgery.

Girl's about ready to go so I'll have to stop this particular form of self-indulgence. We're going to do chores and watch a stupid movie as she recovers from her surgery. By 50 I may be all replacement parts - I'm thinking my next ones should be in blue chrome. Then I'll be dying my hair in ultra-violet ink. My tattoos will be LED so I can change the art...
vicarz: (Wild Buttercup)
Ok I haven't used this in a while...labia jokes!

I did see the ortho, and the issue on my "good" side was a minor hamstring strain. So yes, I overdid it trying to recover. So I switched from GHR to romanian deadlifts, dropped the weight, and am trying to stupid just a little less.

I'm still doing my yogashit (tm) rehab exercises, and I'm kind of used to it. I. Look. Stupid. Well, until I go over and do tiny weights, then bigger weights, then respectable weights for a tiny little person. While I'm doing yogashit (tm) I get to watch people doing sit-ups on the GHR machine.

So...I forget I had surgery. I'm not 100% but I'm really close. My right hip is still not as flexible as the other, but it's close, and neither is really flexible.

Scars - I haven't really talked about them much. One is almost gone, and the other is much better. I can still make it hurt by really digging my finger in it...you MIGHT ask why I would do that, but I keep wanting to break the tissue down like a muscle and get it back to normal. For a scar it's nothing, but no scar would be better. I could lie and say I was stabbed, growing up poor like I did. We used to fight with knives before guns were so cheap. We'd throw bullets at one another because we couldn't afford guns.

But...yeah, totally worth it. I feel like most of my "rehab" issues are just getting back from the break from the gym. I'm bringing up my volume and with that my stamina, and lifting is starting to feel normal again. I think I'm getting better as going to nothing and starting over I found some major form flaws that I'm trying to correct now.

I read some horrific experiences about labral tear recovery and those people said it was worth it. My ride was cake by comparison. Why...that I don't know. I do know they used robots and my surgeon had done thousands before.
vicarz: (Golds)
I think I’m going to pull back on the labral tear tag...maybe swap over to make a gym tag. But as I was, and am, worried my ass on the other side might be related -
I think I may be ok though slightly injured. Unlike the joint issue, in this case I _can_ target the problem with a lacross ball. Rolling I can find the part that hurts, and rolling / hurting does result in relief (not complete, but some). I’m pretty sure that’s good news.

In other gym news, progress.
I’m not ashamed, much, of my old man yoga shit. So I stretch out for 30-45 minutes, so what. I’m used to it.
Yesterday I overhead-pressed (OP) 135 for 3 - all my weights are jumping pretty quickly to old levels, really bolstering the theory of muscle degradation vs. neurotransmitter storage. Or my body reacts better to full body work overall than trying to just do upper body? Or I’m now resting each part more even while overall I’m working out more?
So my DL was 335 (or 345?) for 5, squat for 255 for 5 (not ez), bench is meh but around 215 max when it used to be 235 just shy of a 245? I think on bench and OP I’m facing bad and good impact of form issues. That’s all to say, I’m recovered enough that I think I may both chill a little on the weight while honing my form a lot more plus add in more volume training. Mike noted and I agree support work is both key and important for...well like single leg work. Sure a farmer’s carry isn’t a lunge, but it’s practical (“I carry groceries!”) and involves transitions. Problem is things like farmer’s and prowler are only out in Tysons’, which is a royal pain to get to...imagine when I’m downtown.

In other gym news, questioning my goals and behavior
As I go from injury to injury, and as I’m not “scared” of my workouts now, I am revisiting how much energy I put in the gym. I’m eating food for fun right now, drinking often if not much, and my entire life is not revolving around the gym. When I was trying to be strong, everything was timed or avoided for the gym, and I was in constant pain - working to get out of a chair at work or home. Honestly I don’t miss that. Plus - for what? Worse, it seems the entire gym is stronger...maybe crossfit isn’t a bad trend after all, but just yesterday there were 2 guys squatting sets at 315 (only 1 to depth, but still). Sure they’re bigger than me, but I really was one of the few just a year ago. Hooray for them, and how do I catch up? I’m not near a 405 squat.

Or...or am I :p

Quick post - I never did get around to my giant race/poverty/politics post.
vicarz: (Bad logo)
I'm not feeling guilty about not writing. My eljay / rzn mafia subscription is about to auto-pay, and I'm going to pay even while I question the value of this venue for me. I like writing. I like keeping track of my life and thoughts. I also collect my fingernails into little rows of labeled jars...

House:
I'll be visiting today, but as of my last visit (with Veronica) more walls are up, the attic stairs are installed, and the flooring is started in the upstairs. Jordan put down subflooring (plywood?) over the floorboards, then a layer of foamy plastic (I forget the name, something like quietfloor) to make it even quieter (I also put insulation in the floor/ceiling for that purpose - remember this whole design is about rental income, so reducing sources of potential conflict seems key). The slab is started in the basement but not done yet - still just the back. I'm not sure when the utilities will be done, putting windows and doors in (and that's a big deal, to me), re-making a door - utility room - and new-egress window in the basement (plus some bricks down there look awful) PLUS doing bars for security...oh and regrading the back yard...it seems a lot of work.

As exciting as that is, it's also kind of all that is going on. A lot of it is a holding pattern. I'm happy Jordan sends me pictures at key points.

Other house:
Another 2 br in our area, fully renovated, just went on the market for $338k...we'll see how that goes. The price is fair but sales lately are not good - if this goes for that or higher it would be a nice bump (and an overdue one).

My labia (hey I haven't said that in a while): I'm confused. I'm definitely getting strong, recovering my strength, but something is wrong on the other side. I was ok doing deadlifts for 345 the other day, but the next day my left (other) hip was sore to the point it was painful to bend over to tie my shoe. This is essentially the problem I had on the surgery side (rt) or feels like it, but not as bad. So I'm not sure if I'm symmetrically fucked up and will need surgery AGAIN, if I should just take it easy, or if I should run to the doc to find out (M's advice, not wrong but I'm not sure I'm there yet). I'm keeping an eye on it and should be free to skip at least the DL. I noticed my squat did NOT seem impacted, so it is different.

Today I'm going to freak day at the zoo, after doing squats (after having stayed in last night for a date-night with beer, tv, and me) so I will have to take it easy anyway so I can waddle around for hours.

I don't write about real life much; real thoughts, as fb take the flash communication urges, and I do have a private life (or the parts that involve others are private). Wait, why apologize?

A position has opened up to be an EEOC Administrative Judge in the DC area. Sadly it's only GS-14, so it means if I were to get the position it would...actually hamper my career a little bit. I mean on the one side it's "up" as I'd be a Judge-like-creature, but on the other hand it's a dead-end which narrows my litigation experience to 1 of the 3 fields in which I now work, and I'd be so new the moving up would be very, very slow. On the major plus side I'd be able to do some good - making fair decisions based on the law in a world where so many incompetent racist boobs are ruling against Agencies "just because" with regularity (at taxpayer tremendous expense). I may apply anyway but I'm not necessarily interested - I do have a former coworker I'll tell about the position (though she's very info-adept so she probably knows) because she wants to be a judge (a real one, not this low-level joke) and it could help with that, while she's also smart and fair.

Oh my job is busy but going very well. The girlfriend's career makes me a little self-conscious about my lack of goal-direction, but the more I see her efforts the happier I am with my decisions for me. I'm a hard-working lazy person who cares about his career but not much! I think I'd be proud of my work if I was a line cook.

Oh Baltimore...went to b'more with Janna yesterday, starting in Canton with free-comic book day (more and more black comic fans, more and more black skaters, I like this merging of cultures!), trolling for weird things and furniture (oh hipster prices, ouch), then going to b'more proper (well gay-mecca b'more) having lunch in Trinacria behind boarded up windows (there were only a few broken windows, but they boarded up after the first round of problems) where I noticed an employee looked like what most people would expect from a looter. Also, they had a LOT of $5 bottles of wine. That's a cheap and efficient way to get a buzz on.
(Trinacria is a new sandwich place by an Italian group that has run a grocery store in a not-good area for ages and ages, they say over 100 years and I believe it)

From there we also walked up Mt. Vernon and I caught up with a lot of changes in the area since I had been there last. We passed city cafe, past the still-not-open eden's lounge, to hit a new furniture store with expensive but highly fashionable (waygay) items throughout. In that place
Fox version: a large black male with unkempt afro-hair approached us in military styled boots
an adorbs mica-grad poet-looking guy talked to us when he liked my d-20 shirt, exchanged gaming focus areas, and swapped contact info as he does both gaming and art for games. He liked my shirt, I liked his boots, his hair was big while his voice was warm. Oh Mt. Vernon.
(not a big deal, but I felt like I had to share with the Fox version as I narrated our encounter to Janna as we walked away). We then hit brewer's art for a bit...curious as a couple cute guys ordered food next to us and then disappeared for a LONG time before returning (we wondered if they had walked out for some reason)...I'm convinced they had bathroom sex (ew but they were cute...but still ew). We then checked out the old fire station by Iggy's pizza and confirmed it is being brew-pub'd up, as there were brew-tanks in the now-clear space inside.

Part of me is thinking the "riots" will lead to temporarily even cheaper property, and Mt. Vernon is still pretty. The commute though, egads.

Today will be a different zoo trip than with Veronica later...I am on a mission to trek the side of the zoo closest to her house as we hear them bellowing in the morning and night. She tells me they're zebras - they sound like mules. My theory is when they see us together, and hear us talking, they'll gather in groups, point, and say "omg that's totally them!" before they ask us to keep it down.
vicarz: (Wild Buttercup)
Scared.
Thur I did a whopping 335 for 5 deadlift, and it caused pain in my LEFT hip (surgery was on the right). It's Sat evening and it hasn't gone away.

If this is a tear on the other side, it makes sense...why would the hip be one shape on the right and another on the left...but in all this only one side had the problem. I'm unsure of what to do other than hope I feel better and be tender as hell trying to squat tomorrow. Maybe I just need to recover slower - I am doing conventional, but it's felt so...so very good to lift without pain.

If I have to fucking have surgery on the other side...for what? To lift weights? It's as if I'm just not meant to be strong.

Hope this is a minor setback. The flexibility still hasn't returned to the robot-surgery'd joint though I'm getting better.

As another minor thing, I forget that I have or had a tear in my pecs I never addressed. This would explain the weakness and recurring problems in that shoulder.

Tired of injuries. Maybe there is a god and he wants me to be just another fatamerican (tm). Instead of leaving the house, I could just watch porn, work all week and then blast pop movies on my home system while live tweeting my opinion on the sexplosions, and order food in.

Hope I'm just freaking out over nothing. But my butt. Maybe we could just knock me out once and let the robots fix all the parts at once.
vicarz: (Wild Buttercup)
So on the plus side, I'm really busy with good things. On the other, I'm so-so-so tired.

I'm just getting close enough to real weights to be tired and having to be careful on what I do. Minor gym note to point out progress and lack thereof:
Deadlifted 315 for 5 with no real problem. However my grip was not strong enough for more than one overhand grip pull at that weight...maybe 2.
Squatted 225 for 5, and sadly it was not easy. I feel like squats have a lot more moving parts, and I haven't quite regained my stride on them yet. I was doing 275 for 5 when I could hit 315, so with a month to go on the recovery slope perhaps I don't need to rush. Curiously when I did 5x5 at 135 my legs were sore for days afterwards.
My OP and bench are kinda lame, but slowly coming back to life. I guess you really do need to do leg work to get upper body gains.

But it's starting to lightning and thunder outside. I might treat myself to the first storm of the season by standing in the big window to watch the explosions in my olympic wrestling suit.
vicarz: (Wild Buttercup)
I'm behind so this will have to be quick...

Gym: (girlfriend and gym stuff)
Discovered not to my very surprise that running nonstop is a ton harder than this run walk garbage. I made it to 30 mins 10/20 minute pace alternating every 2 minutes with no ill effects so it was time to try the 15 minute run. I SUCKED at the 15 minute run - I stopped at minute 13 (slowed to 20 min mile pace for a min). I think I could have made it but did not mind bailing...I wouldn't be able to just up and do 2 10-min miles in 2 days I'm sure. So, now it's really time to revisit whether I want to train up to 3 ten-minute miles again and what that means for rehab. Do I "rehab" to go beyond where I started when I don't care much about running?

While I was failing the girl ran 8 miles...she's a fucking machine! True to my fb post about how hard working people seem to call themselves lazy, she thinks her runs are poor or no big deal. I guess that attitude is why she's so good at them.

Similar subject, yesterday we hit the gym together for the first time. She hadn't done squats before, but with no real issue dove into real squats with real weights up to plates...really impressive for a first time. I thought she was strong - now I have measurable proof. It's funny to be trying to teach, observe, and spot at the same time while this other part of my brain is going "Dude, she's a total fucking badass."

So labral stuff again:
No problems in fact I've turned some sort of a corner. I'm still stiff and impaired / not flexible since the surgery, but I've made slow but steady gains while...something just changed. I used to have problems stretching because it hurt so bad my body would jerk uncontrollably to protect the injured area. Now when I stretch it feels more like a regular stretch...just the pain of stretching, perhaps still more than normal, but without my body freaking and trying to jerk around to protect the hip. It still takes some patience and mental work to keep from jumping sometimes, but as I'm stretching daily it's getting easier almost every time. Right now the growth curve is on a steeper slope. The difference in my hips/legs flexibility is noticeable, but not very much anymore.

Squats... I programmed to start slow, but as my flexibility increased I felt like I was way, way under my ability. So instead of doing the 145 squat I programmed, I did...5? at 185. I think the key issue is my hips were able to reach parallel without jerking around in pain. So I did 185 and...it was easy peasy. Now all I have to do is wait out today and see if there is any hip-joint fallout. It's looking good, which means...well I have to program a slow recovery and not overdo it but that the return to actual weight squats isn't unimaginably far away. So I have to add in a pinch of mental discipline to not get hungry and start taking risks.

House
Wrote the contractor a bit direct on the point I was losing money every month for not being able to live there. He responded with an update on the permitting process, showing he was both working on the project here and there and the permits were still being pursued. I also looked up my permits online (surprised to see how easy that was to do) and found the parking pad he added in? He had to do that to get the zoning approved. The main electrical lines are already into the house and each box - sadly the old electric box is not in use (maybe it wasn't up to code).

The girl had some good ideas about the place - noted there wasn't really a good reason to have the iron stairs to the top floor from the back, and how easy it would be to remove them, plus how much space and light that would open in the yard. She also noted a neighbor's place where the parking pad is outside the fence, much easier than opening the gate when you want to park and far cheaper than an auto-gate.

Sadly, as noted in facebook, she isn't a big fan of the living room pinball machine. She doesn't seem to understand how odd the naked mannequins will look without it.

Sat we took a night for us and hit "Russia House" for a night of mafia enjoyment. Seriously, the place looks like a converted embassy, is indeed staffed by russians, but...is inexplicable. It's so dark, the wood furniture and trim everywhere, the heavy burgundy drapes, the tiny rooms, burly doorman...besides leading to a warm vodka infused date night, it felt like another luxurious but potentially deadly adventure. No room for kosak dancing that I saw, but there may be secret passages...

As a last happy note that I don't think translates well, last night after doing the gym and showing she's squatastic, we went straight to bardo to drink while still in gym clothes. The place is hilarious, with an automated dishwasher...outside (nothing lifts my heart like watching white people wash dishes) and still-delicious beer. Sure, raging hipster heaven, but there were happy dogs and happy people running around, and it felt like we were camping. It was so fun...not entirely sure why it felt so good but still basking in that feeling.
vicarz: (Rain)
(note I do not have a lot of happy icons, huh)

Visited the doc today - summarizing my very happy and exciting news so I don't waste too much lunch / paid work time:

1. No further visits prescribed unless I want them
2. I should keep in mind it's not just a recovery I'm dealing with, "I changed the mechanics of how your hip operates."
3. Running prescribed: 15 minutes, 2 minutes running with 2 minutes walking. Do not run 2 days in a row, and if I survive running without feeling pain the next day, up in 5 minute increments until I'm running 30 minutes in intervals. If I make it up to 30 minutes, then drop to 15 minutes and just run. Similarly, if I'm not sore the next day, up in 5 minute increments until I'm running 30 minutes.
4. LIFTING: allowed, suggested starting point is 50%. Also suggested is doing a 6-8 week program not based on my usual ability, but based on a programmed recovery to my former levels.
5. Note - does not currently recommend squatting beneath parallel / 90% knee. Works, I'm stiff enough I can hardly tie my goddamn shoe.

Theoretically I could be squatting 315 in 2 months. However, I'm also supposed to tone it down if I get not-good-pain.

Man who ate napoleon for breakfast happy he doesn't have to do the elliptical anymore.
vicarz: (Wild Buttercup)
Annoyed that I lost my weeks-long log of exercises by leaving it in the gym. This has happened several times, and only once did someone return it. I don't understand in a gym where most should know how important that is people just toss it.

My back recovered quickly, and to my shock I could go through most of the motion of a squat today - hooray? I only did 135 - just trying to get to depth and it was worth to get to parallel; still, I could at least do that. My OP is coming back up, so I guess the whole muscle memory / neurotransmitter issue is a big deal. That means on the one hand, gym recovery will be a long time coming - on the other hand, it could conceivably be a long period of growth when I'm recovered.

I am lapsing on my exercises when I'm doing things with the girl, but otherwise good about them still. I rarely get sore, but I often go slow my first couple of long strides.

None of this is terribly important, but I was thinking about the gym and am keeping track.
vicarz: (Punk hump)
I'm mostly walking fine even in the morning, but I have some areas I can't really move - I can't really cross the surgery leg over my knee, for instance (or imagine I can only do half a butterfly stretch). I walk up and down the escalator stairs. I still do most of my exercises most every day. I'm a lot more regular in the gym now, though it's 75% yogashit and cardio on the elliptical.

Today for the first time I tried deadlifts and almost had success. I picked up 135 and it was nothing (my form was awful, how quickly we forget). 185 was the same, and 225 felt fine but for the first time I could feel some minor exertion - so I figured I'd do like 5x5 to not over-exert myself.

Then I pulled a muscle in my back. In. My. Back.
I tried to wait another 5 minutes, but while I could lift the weight, there was no doubt I had a strain - so I bailed. I did some leg lifts, ab-wheel thingys, good-girl-bad-girl ab/induction work, and another 20 minutes of elliptical yawnage (hr only at 177 this time vs. 187) but ... called it a day and my back is still tired.

If I have to wait out another dumb back injury I might fucking cry. At 225? I mean I was going to be happy I could do something and thought I was being super cautious...

Hope this back thing is short-term, but I had strained my back (on the stupid leg press...what, what, what am I doing wrong!?) and only recovered from that recently.

I was trying to get back into my old program - not sure it's the best, but it seemed a good point to return to at least in the short term. I was trying to get into the old routine as much as I (safely) could before I'm released to actually train - but no, I hurt my back lifting the equivalent of a sack of kitchen trash.
vicarz: (Wild Buttercup)
Sad to see [livejournal.com profile] twirlingtuliphas deleted her journal. I liked her even if I didn't understand her a lot of the time. If you're looking, wish you the best sweetie. Stay strong!

I'm way too thrilled to have a super lazy day today (gf out of town). Fucking lazy. I will likely do things, but I may not, and I have virtually nothing that _needs_ doing. However I'm likely to a) hit the gym for not-a-real-workout, b) taxes sluggery, c) put clean laundry away, d) iron shirts (my excuse is at least it's being near something warm), e) do more south park achievements (no really), and f) clubby spellbound depending on weather and mood.

I've been slowly returning to physical activity. I forget I had surgery and am used to not working out - I'm actually making some of my workouts in the gym just to stay in the behavioral pattern (also to keep ... humble, as doing ass contractions on the mat looks weird and I'm still ashamed that I was ashamed to work out in my brace).

I'm not having ill effects from upping the activity. When I get up in the morning I'm stiff, and I still have problems with anything that involves spreading my legs (cough shut up cough) like getting in and out of the car. But I'm not getting searing pain, just youch pain. I am going to start cheating a little and try some basic overhead presses with low weights, say naked bar to 95 lbs to see if I can work that in.

My last bench workouts were not horrible. I think [livejournal.com profile] shutterbug was right about rotator so I'm addressing that with some stuff I picked up from my chiro - more flexibility and RoM stuff than building, but we'll see.

Leg press has been interesting - I think I'm around 270 now with no ill effects, and at 5 sets of 10 I can feel the work like an actual workout! I did learn something both about myself and the leg press - I'm doing it wrong. I never really noticed before when I was doing 450 or 540 or whatever, but my ass curls up like I was gettin' some. Unlike most leg-press-yellers, I don't just bop it 3" in the losing quest to look strong without working (leg press is maybe 3rd behind bench and bicep curls for lines of men doing it wrong) but while I take the thing as far down as I can, now that I'm really flexibility restricted due to the surgery, I notice that as I get lower than 90 deg my pelvis starts to tilt. I'm not having luck on preventing it, so I'm stopping when I get low enough that it happens. Still, it's nice to be doing something with my legs.

I wonder what squats will feel like, deadlifts done conventional. I wonder how fucking long I'll be stiff and sore. I remain grateful this isn't the hellish trip I was told it might be.
vicarz: (Wild Buttercup)
Labral annoyance:
I survived doing leg press, including the part where I was doing 180 on the dumb machine while a woman beside me was doing 450 and change. Dignity is having dignity when your situation does not. I moved the "weight" up to 230 last time and still no noticeable ill effects; similarly I did the elliptical for 30 minutes with an incline of "10" and resistance of "5" with no ill effects (nor effort, HR showed at around 130). At 180/230 I do have some effort, and other than resistance/stiffness with the hip joint, I don't feel pain or problems from the effort - which I hope is good news.

I am waking up slightly stiff and sore, but I feel otherwise fine enough I kind of forget about the issue unless I accidentally spread my legs (shut-it!) such as when I get in or out of the car.

Speaking of, got the videos from pre-surgery (not sure others can see them).
315 for 2 kind of, I didn't quite hit depth (no wonder I did 2) though to my shock my ankles aren't a complete wobble-wreck...well the first lift was horrible, with my ankles what...an inch in the air? (facepalm)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R-PqO6qIiyY&index=30&list=PL433D09AA3833EB15
Then there is this bench at 235 which looks like not much effort...instead of going for 2 I went 1 and tried 245 (which I failed).
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HbXZasApjXY&index=31&list=PL433D09AA3833EB15
If the vids don't work oh well - couldn't download and hopefully I make the moot some months in the future.

Gymbrah has now squatted 405. I truly hope I get good results in months rather than years presuming I can lift without "pain" in the injury sense. We argue about lifting shoes vs. my chucks and I think he's winning that argument.

House:
I showed up at the house to grab mail, and found a "stop work order." That sounds horrible, but it was from the area inspector noticing the dumpster permit expired back on 10/31/15. I notified the contractor. I thought the permits would potentially get ruled on the end of March, but the last email from the contractor says end of this month - we'll see. It's funny that one arm of the government is not processing our permits while another is lamenting the dumpster still being there, though it's understandable the permit was not supposed to allow us to kill 2-3 parking spaces for about a year?

Other house:
With the cold my poor heat pump is just not adequate, and I think the "aux" coil heat is destroyed as well. I recall an estimate some time ago for $2600 or 2700 to replace the inside part, but I'd much rather do this as a rental repair than a nondeductible issue...I should look up those costs in the IRS publications sometime. I'm getting wrecked on the elec bill though, and will be for some time.

I want to shovel my snow but it seems odd to head down there when my walk in the snow is potentially injurious, and it's likely the neighbors will shovel as they did in the past.

I'm happy to be busy a lot, but it doesn't make for good writing.
vicarz: (DL)
It's a little annoying that eljay keeps asking me to save from prior draft only to have it either revive a post already made, or "revive" a blank post.

Saw ortho Dr. Ochiai today - he said my progress was very good / far better than average or expected, but of course I don't believe him because doctors always say that to all their patients (so many people think they or their relatives are amazing because of this motivating white lie). He noted only a 5 deg difference between the two joints, though I'm also not terribly flexible to start with (despite my old man 30 minute yoga routine I warm up with).

He moved my leg around, checked flexibility (the PT said she'd forward the measurements she took to him), and watched me walk up and down the hallway.

Things I'm allowed to do:
1. Stop PT, and just do my solo work daily on my own, but return if I get worse or experience pain.
2. Walk the .5 mile to work (metro) but not 2 days in a row until I have done it a few times without getting sore.
3. Leg press 50% of former weight. Since I don't do leg press (If deadlifts were easy they'd call them the leg press) I'll have to take a stab and what that might mean. The real purpose seems to be to increase flexibility at the joint.
4. Elliptical - for cardio crap, I can do that. Ugh. Guess I might as well. \
5. See him again in 6 weeks
vicarz: (Wild Buttercup)
I just faced my first setback - a minor one I hope. I got the brace off and everything has felt normal - in fact the damn brace was causing more difficulty than help and without it on I rarely limp.

Over the weekend I was, perhaps, a bit reckless. Now I feel a pain, joint pain, way up on the inside of the hip. I feel fine until there is any kind of movement in the hip, particularly out (like bad-girls) and that motion is extremely weak. I noticed this before PT yesterday, more so afterwards, and I tried to do the exercises we did not do in PT and it hurt too much to (reasonably) continue.

I'm worried I won't be able to do my exercises today. I'll do what doesn't hurt. For the first time I'm really on the verge of a pain killer. Each time I get up I take a few steps to get moving, and I'm limping as the joint just hurts. Last night I slept on one side with -a pillow in between my legs- as prescribed by my PT. No seriously.

Non-labia news:
I'm insane. Life is happy, work is slow, but I'm having major focus problems. The big mental issue seems to be I'm feeling overwhelmed. I've remastered my calendar a little bit, shrunk multiple email inboxes, and made organized piles of things that need doing.

But it feels like too much all at once. Taxes are a mountain this year, in the office all I seem to do are tiny tasks while legal research and my large brief all sit by the wayside (a hearing outline is mostly done, however, but working on it for more than an hour is an elusive concept), I haven't figured out the DC permit process (it seems a catch 22, you need the COO to get a business license, but the license to be granted a COO - and they don't answer their phones and send C&P email responses)...all the things are easily manageable, yet I feel overwhelmed. Making investigative phone calls seem like the hardest thing in the world. "Why is the bar writing me claiming I didn't give them a tax id number when I know I returned those forms?" "How is it possible I missed 2 utility bills for my house - I _never_ miss payments, and on one I wrote "PAID" when my records show it wasn't!?"

I keep stalling - this post is stalling for emotional need. I think if I just had one more coffee I'd be energized. Just make it to lunch and I can take a nap and might wake up smarter. Maybe tomorrow I'll be more focused, just sleep tonight and it'll work itself out. But it keeps not being that day, that hour, that perfect level of stimulant. Chemicals and naps are not making me functional.
vicarz: (Fat cell (from giantmicrobes.com))
Today is my first day brace free. My hip is a tad sore though - I think the motion of stretching (like doing the splits) is my main source of pain lately. I am normally not in pain so I sort of forget, then I do something like get in the car and discover that to do so I spread my legs - didn't even know.

Today I don't need the brace. It feels odd - the date is as arbitrary as a drinking age or anniversary. I never really understood what it was supposed to prevent. However, I am still going to take it easy and return to "normal" life gradually. How far can I walk before I'm tired? Can I go to work? Should I not run down the escalator? I walked like an old man over ice yesterday.

I do my exercises every day though I'm not convinced they're a big deal. Isometric yoga bullshit mostly, though the ones that target the hip I have no argument with. The routine in no particular order:
I stopped doing the stand on one leg, then the other, as it seems pointless now that I'm walking
Yoga cat cow back stretches (fucking why?) 10 for 10-count
From all fours, "rock backward and forward" (flows from or to the cat-cow yoga shit, but makes sense - I feel the hip stretch a little on the front and I can't go all the way back) 2 sets of 10 for 5 count
Lay on my back: squeeze the glute, then squeeze the quad / heel into floor (2 sets of 10 for 5 count ea)
This weird feel at your hip not-ab lower tummy area flex thing I don't understand but do anyway 20 at 5 count
Clamshells with a resistance band (2 sets 10)
Leg side lifts with the hip stable, 2 sets 10
Leg back lifts with the hip stable, 2 sets 10
Mini-unweighted squats, 2 sets 10
Cross the leg and let the knee fall until "resistance" 3 of 30 sec count
Quad stretch 3 of 30 sec count
All 1-leg things I repeat on the good leg when not in PT

I go to the gym and do bench, pull-ups, and t-bar rows only. My bench at 215 only went up twice the other day, but that's a stone's throw from normal for me and that's flat bench vs. arched spread stance.

In all of these the question is whether I should push like a stretch, or follow the wussy PT advice of stop right before you feel anything. I follow instructions but think it may be too cautious (and thereby slow). Except the other night in club90/KKBB when I danced - but with my brace on! Or in my living room when I booty-floored. Even then, it's not like I'm getting screaming pain.

OH OH OH and the wound site - feeling still coming back to the outer thigh, scars dark but small, and not only has it been ages since I had screaming pain from that broken stitch feeling, but I successfully foam rollered the wound site the other day without anything but minor discomfort. That, to me, says it's no longer recovery from surgery / cut issues, but recovery to ... well deeper surgery issues such as the ball and socket joint. I think the key issue is to build range of motion, then strength, but avoiding the common side effect of tendinitis in the same area...makes sense when your body is healing that it might go overboard.

My appetite didn't change with my inactivity and I think I've put on a few, or shifted a few from good to bad lbs.

ID TEN T

Jan. 27th, 2015 04:19 pm
vicarz: (VD)
I wear my brace not because I think I need to, but because I fear if I do not I will do dumb things. This fear is well founded. I "let myself" play pandora's purity ring radio station (as liked and x'd by me for some time now) and it ('s like Kris' Santory time station?) makes me spin.

Emotions in bottles.

I joked in fb that I wanted to dance, but...I couldn't not. I got all spinny in my living room. Or Kungfuey. In any case, I was right - I'm not responsible enough.

I feel like the brace is overkill, but I get little reminders that I'm not fixed. I wear it more to remind me not to do things I think I can do, just in case there really is a reason, and because I'm ashamed that I was ashamemd to wear it so I make myself wear it as a fuckyou to shame.

But I couldn't not dance - seems safe enough, so my top came flying off and I spun around the damn living room while looking at the snow I'm not in. I bounced into my bedroom with the mirror and caught myself booty to flooring - then again. Then I noticed my hip getting tired.

Sigh. So, one of me was right; I'm not responsible enough to dance. I tried to just wiggle a little, but like a drink it was seductive and I slipped. Normal rules don't apply to me - I'm too fucking stupid. I'm also not fixed -
NOT BEING IN PAIN DOES NOT MEAN I'M HEALTHY
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