It's going to be a long journey: otherwise known as getting back to exercising

Poppy2014

Poppy2014

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#1
It's going to be a long journey: otherwise known as getting back to exercising

I'm going to try and keep a journal of my exercise journey as it made such a positive difference last time I started exercising.

I have fibromyalgia, complex pain, a whole host of physical injuries that have resulted in 5 operation in the last 2 years. In 2003 I weighed in at 9.5st, following a serious accident, 4 lots of surgery that weight ballooned to 22st. Today that is 18.4st, or 116.5kg.

In 2010 I was finally in a place to start on the recovery road and I successfully managed to complete an exercise programme and start to learn to eat.
As a food phobic I had serious issues with food which resulted in eating white food on white plates. I ate chicken, potatoes, bread, fish, turkey, crisps and little else.
I had not eaten fruit or vegetables since I was 8. I had never eaten rice, curry, spaghetti or anything like that. I was at the point where I couldn't even eat gravy.
Serious pain, a ruptured vertebrae mid thoracic and an inability to walk more than 5ft meant I had to make a life changing decision.

My goal for 2010 was to eat 1 new thing a day for 365 days a year. This included 1 pea, 1 carrot slice, and building up from there. Today I can eat, but I know when things are going wrong because I revert to white food.
Pain causes white food.
In 2014 my recovery was set back, I had managed to go from 22 to 14 st, and exercising 3 times a week on an intensive programme. I wasn't taking any pain meds and I could walk. A simple fall, meant I damaged my arm, started one of the longest fibromyalgia flares and developed complex pain syndrome.
I was no longer able to exercise. 5 surgeries over the past 2 years, huge amounts of pain killers, and feeling like death warmed up wasn't helping.
I put 4st back on and can feel it.

Finally my physio has said I'm allowed back in the pool and gym.
My first session...

Pool.
exercise programme and allowed to swim a single length with supports. (I have a noodle and float) It took 13.5 minutes to swim 150m and I cannot co-ordinate my arms and legs because of the nerve damage.

Gym
I am not allowed to add any weight to the machines and the standard weight is 5kgs
13mins on bike level 1 = 3 km
3 mins on arm bike level 2
2 sets of 5 lateral arm press 5kgs
2 sets of 5 leg adductor at 5kgs and 45degree.
2 sets of 5 back extension at 5kgs

Week 2:
Pool
45 minutes physiotherapy exercises.
150m in 12 minutes including my 1st unsupported 50m in 2 years
25m of supported swimming co-ordinating a breast stroke kick.

Gym.
13 minutes on bike level 1 = 3.2km
5 minutes on arm bike level 2
2 sets of 10 lateral arm press 5kgs
2 sets of 10 leg adductor at 5kgs and 45degree.
2 sets of 10 back extension at 5kgs
2 sets of 10 ankle extension at 5kgs
2 sets of 10 knee curls.
1 set of 5 free weight arm raise 1kg x 5 seconds
2 sets of 10 lateral pull down at 7.5kgs....
and finally... I passed the sobriety test, walking 10ft toe to heal without looking at my feet or falling over 3 times.
1hour to do all of it.

Today I hurt more than possible but I am happy, the gym is my head space.
I plan to go back to 1 new thing a day to eat... although it will be back to the stuff I've stopped eating again.
 
Anime-Alchemy

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#2
I wish you all the best. Despite all the set backs, you keep going. That is something to be admired.
 
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natalie

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#3
Hi Poppy,

I had wondered how you were doing; since we last posted on MHF, quite a very long time ago.


I am so sorry, to have heard and learned what you have from what I had roughly read, have been through pain wise, and that you couldn't hardly eat, and I am glad to see that gradually you are trying to improve things.

I am also amazed, that you'll exercise as well, swimming, gym, I feel that it is amazing for you, that you can now achieve that.


I just half hope that you although have pains, you do a thorough careful and safe warm up procedure, beforehand that is essential.


I am amazed also, that you have so much physical diet and fitness about you. Well done, at the moment.


Best Wishes,

oh and by the way, I am very much into the mode of my fitness workings out, and my own off own back, careful dieting plans, though i don't suffer with acute, terrible severe pain, I'm very well, from that point of view, just the mental h ealth I have which is agony for me on occasions.


Best Wishes,


Natalie.


I am glad that you have felt so inspired, to write your journal, on diet and fitness which as you point out, and I found for me, does help, for posiitivity safely does it now, challenges, in diet and fitness. Again, well done, for both, diary keeping, and being active in diet and fitness.


As long as I am well, and not volunteering on occason, I'll keep an eye out for this thread, enabling me to monitor your progress, all being well, hopefully without any not too many setbacks.
 
Poppy2014

Poppy2014

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#4
hydrotherapy

25/4/18.
I work with a physiotherapist who has looked after my injuries since my first one 24 years ago. It's weird, I've watched him go from a junior, to senior, superintendent, then private. I watched him meet his wife, get married, have number 1 and 2 children, seen him hit 40, he is just 6 months younger than me but most of all he is the only person who can legitimately hurt me and get away with it.

I see him once a month for routine top up spine and back support and generally as often as possible for hydrotherapy at the minute. He see's me at odd times, at short notice and is the only reason I am still standing in 1 relative piece. He puts me together with frequent monotony. He is also the one who says what I can and can't do.

Today was week 3 at hydrotherapy.

I am rehabilitating my last injury where I ruptured muscles and tendons in my knee. If I cannot gain stability before July the surgeon want to cut it open and start removal and stitching. As we all know I heal dreadfully this is a last option other than a knee replacement.
John makes it ache, but I can see a difference already, I can bend to 90 degrees and in the water the exercises are getting easier. I can walk quite a good distance and my balance is starting to improve. Good job I'm in the water it doesn't hurt when you fall over...
1 hour hydrotherapy done.

I now have an appointment with my old gym instructor who I've found at another gym and John is happy for me to work on a proper programme with him rather than blindly leading myself and hoping I do it right.

today I am having beans for my new food (with chicken, and jacket potato)
 
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natalie

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#5
HI Poppy,

That does make safe sense, for you to work, with an instructor, and thankfully whom you have known, I can see where they are coming from, so it is always a good idea, to work with a fitness professional.


I don't train at the gym, I workout to my fitness dvds, and these are teacher lead workouts, on the dvds.


Best Wishes.
 
Poppy2014

Poppy2014

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#6
So this week has been hard, migraine on top of migraine is not helping.
John is great hydro was good, New exercises for the next four weeks.
Swimming on Friday was good, 45 mins of physio exercises followed by 200m in 13.5min
In the gym I managed to complete a short core stability exercise programme and today I'm meeting Mark to look at a proper programme.
This week I have eaten, baked beans, yogurt, green beans, carrots and peas.
Today I am having cabbage, gravy and pork. I will also have mashed potatoes.
I had beef stew yesterday, it had onions and Swede.
Starting to eat again is almost as good as getting back to the gym.
Both are scary but needed.
 
Poppy2014

Poppy2014

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#7
week 4

Monday Hydro with swim.
I did 1 hour of hydrotherapy exercises with my new one added.
So 2x10 knee bends with float resistance
4 lots of walking the width, marching a 90degree knee bend
2 lots of walking backwards knee bends
2lots side ways with Achilles stretch
10 pendulums (hanging)
10 twists both sides
2 x 10 extended leg raise and hold with float resistance then bring back to floor
and new one pulling from back to front using float resistance. (painful so only managed 2 on each leg)

and then I did my swim, 50m with float, this helps with body position and resistance
then 200m in 10 mins and I had to move into the medium lane for 100m of it.
and 25 min back stroke.
this means I've increased from 150m to 275m in 4 weeks, plan is to increase 50m per week. Physio has agreed this is okay, to do hydro 2 times a week and gym 2 times a week.
 
Poppy2014

Poppy2014

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#8
Help...
Gym hurts. Mark my old gym instructor has given me a programme of stability and strengthening exercises.
I'm as weak as a new born kitten and can just about lift a fairy...
10 exercises..10 I mean come on, he's trying to kill me off... bless him, it's a good job I like him:) the plan is to build up to 3 sets of 10 before I add any weights (other than the minimum on the machines which is either 2.5 or 5kg and free weights plus stability ball.
I managed 3 of each exercise on each limb.
He laughed at me, I'll get him back... next time I'm going to do 4 so there.
Tomorrow is a swimming day and Sunday is a rest day.
Today my diet consisted of rubbish. I did however eat a scone with jam and cream (and sultanas) so that's my new thing.
Tomorrow we are going for Indian, I do like a nice curry, and I may even eat some rice !!!
Scales today 115.3 kg. - 1.1kg.
Every bit helps.
 
N

natalie

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#9
Hi Poppy,


I would try maybe having protein bars, mine are nut based, with peanut butter, and they can help build the strength in your muscles, or alternatively, I would highly recommend a supplement for bone and joint support growth, and this brand which I take, is the number one brand for this.



Regards,


Natalie.
 
Poppy2014

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#10
Hi Natalie
Thanks for the advice. Nuts are one of the things I still can't manage, it's a texture thing, will get there.
I know I have to move over to a protein based diet to lose weight, and that's my target.
Struggled this week, examining all week from 9-6 with only a few breaks in between as not been conducive to anything as its been a 6 am start and 7 pm before I get home.
Knee pain has put paid to much else.
Physio in the morning, back to wearing brace for a few weeks to offload the knee as the knee cap is displaced due to fluid, severe ankle odeama is frustrating as we had hoped it was the medication I was taking that was causing it but looking at today's installment it us likely to be the FND.
And to top my crap week I have a rotton cold and ear ache.
But
I ate Cabbage, shallots, (mushrooms chopped so small I didn't have to chew them..) I have had spicy mayonnaise, and the most fantastic chicken bhuna with whole grain pilau rice and garlic and coriander naan. That was just perfect.
We also shared a pasanda, chicken tikka (which I normally don't like) multiple rices and an Indian version of a mixed grill. Now that was a night...
Today despite everything I am 113 kg, so moving nicely.
I think without the odeama I could be 111 but happy with 113kg.
I am now a normal size 22 down from loose size 24, I have lost 2" off my waist size and 1cm from my thighs. Happy tonight.
 
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natalie

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#11
HI Poppy,

Sorry to hear you haven't had a good week, and to top it all off, with a cold.


I hope you get back to your gym workouts soon with Mark, and ah, I'll be interested to see complimentary laughing, if you do manage to get him back, with another extra one, of the extra moves, which at the previosu session you just couldn't manage!


I went to zumba gold on Wednesday, near me, unfortunately too much of a slower pace, class, I like hard and faster dance classes. Oh well, anyway, I have got the Saturday and all being well weather wise, zumba gold group forthcoming then.


I remember, that when i was just weening off from the Onlanzapine drug, and I was a size 18, soon as i was put on to Abilify, I thought right, I wish to get back into fitness workouts. Luckily, I have dropped from a clothes size 18, to a size 16, and a happy. I would like to maybe get down to size 14. There's plenty of diet and fitness management time for that goal to be reached.



Regards,


Natalie.
 
Poppy2014

Poppy2014

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#12
Today despite the cold, which is now a proper infection and on antibiotics I decided it was time to go back to the gym and swimming.
I needed to do a little of both as I'm having a full blown back spasm which John (my LT physio) will sort out tomorrow
Today was all about doing some of both.
I did 150 mtrs of marching/swimming using a noodle, which helps me stabilise when I'm walking, and when swimming gives me float support so I'm not holding it all in my back. I also "managed" 50 mtrs of crawl legs using a float (I find this really hard) as it really puts a lotof strain through my knee cap which was taped today. But I'm having to go back in splint as my knee is seriously swollen (frustrating) I was able to do the hanging exercises, and knee push and pull, but only 10 of each which is way down on last wee.

After that I went into the gym to do some arm, chest and lower back work, with some core stability and balance.
In no particular order.
Balance ball for 3x10 secs with no hands
Balance ball 2 x 5 sec leg raise using hand to support leg (on both legs)
Balance ball, 6 knee bends using ball at wall for support and gradient movement.
10 x calf and Achilles raise and stretch on both legs together
5 x calf and Achilles raise and stretch on individual leg, difficult balance on right. Using wall to support.
On each leg individually
5 x leg stretch with resistance band on number 7 (one better than last week)
5 x leg stretch and bilateral knee bend rocking back to front.
5 x adduction on number 7
On each arm
10 time elbow bend/stretch to full extension resistance band number 8
10 times pull across body, number 7
10 times pull from shoulder height 90 degrees to downward vertical.
On lateral pull down
3 sets of 10 elbow bend to work neck muscles
2 sets of 5 lateral rotation to help mobilise spine at 5kg (which hurt)
then 3 sets of 10 long pull 2 to chest and 1 to back of neck.

It took some doing, and I only did half the programme, but I did more on every piece than my first attempt.
I'll see Mark on Wednesday and see how he goes.
Goals: one step at a time
 
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natalie

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#13
Hi Poppy,


Well, this weekend as I knew I couldn't properly workout, due to time, and also my parents were in for alot of during the day, I did chair workouts. Which in your case, and certainly at the moment, I'll suggest if i can, you might like to think about chair fitness in view of your back. And pain in general, with your conditon that causes so much pain, however, I do understand wholeheartedly, if you will very much prefer gym work.


I am hoping I'll workout in the morning tomorrow, other wise and also on Tuesday before I go to volunteer, in my new organisation outfit. The working out on the day of volunteering helps me to perform better in volunteering, less stressed, more fitter, and more t oned up.


I wish you well, back wise, and have a good week, gym wise. Yes, you're right, one step at a time, fitness and in the gym sense.


Regards,


Natalie.
 
Poppy2014

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#14
Whoo hoo... 2 weeks after developing pneumonia and being really ill I finally felt well enough to try and go back to the gym/pool.
It was a shortened session but it's a start as I'm still completely well.
So today.
150 metres of marching in the water, this allows me to start small and increase the bend and height of my knee. From there I was able to use the float and noodle to do the strengthening and stretch exercises. Then I did 50 metres of stretch swimming which means I use the float in front of me and practice kicking my legs from the knee only.
Then I went into the swim (lanes) pool and did 12 lengths in sets of 2 with exercises at each end, mostly stretch ones, where I hang on the wall and sort of swing my legs (like a pendulum of a clock). I did 25 metres of backstroke which is really hard as it causes strain on my neck, but I need to practice to help strengthen the muscles.
From there I went into the gym, only for 15 minutes but I had a goal in mind. Today I did 2 miles on the hand bike and 1 full mile on the bike. My mile took 5 minutes and 35 seconds.
It was good to be back.
 
Poppy2014

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#15
Paying dearly for this session. Back pain is out of this world.
Full blown spasms that are causing my hands to swell because the muscles are so tight. Hip burning.
Pain score 9/10 not been this severe for many years.
Today will be a tens machine, volterol and diazepam day.
Try again tomorrow.
 
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natalie

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#16
Just a suggestion;

With the pain so bad for you, couldn't you entertain a completed rest day, no excersise at all, and then resume?


Also, unless you do, try taking the odd normal main stream, a painkiller for your back pain, and if cost literally isn't an issue, try accessing somebody reputable for a back massage, might feel painful, at first, can do wonders.


I'm just concerned slightly, that you'll be working out, and are in severe pain, not giving the chance for your body to fully recover from a previosu session, depending off course, when you last worked out.


I'm very much into the mode of my working out, low impact aerobic dance, a hard workout, and then a different fitness dvd, for toning worouts. Both consisted of warm ups, and cooldown stretching.



Yours in health and fitness,


Natalie.
 
Poppy2014

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#17
Hi Natalie
I am going to have a total rest day today and probably tomorrow as I have physio on Wednesday so he will have a look and see what I've irritated.
I'll go to the pool later to do some gentle stretches and hanging to stretch out my lower back, but there will be no swimming or anything.
I need to do some hip rotation as whatever I've done to my back has nipped a nerve in my hip so I need to do some hip flex work.
Will be purely physio no fitness work today.
Thank you for caring xx Poppy
 
Poppy2014

Poppy2014

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#18
I give in.
Still having major problems with my back and left side.
But I'm waiting for urgent appointment with orthopedic consultant on Monday.
I knelt down. I was stupid. I know I'm not supposed to kneel down. I forgot.
My kneecap displaced and I tore something, I actually felt it tear and my knee is now strapped back up and I can't push up on that leg.
And to top my week off my chest infection has returned with a vengeance and my eye won't stop weeping.
In am just stalled.
It's bad enough having fibromyalgia, but these pains just add to it.
Normally I cope with pain but it really is getting me down and I'm running out of cope.
But I'm off to the pool to stretch my hip and lower back again. It won't get better by itself.
I feel a steroid injection coming on.
 
Poppy2014

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#19
The orthopaedic Dr shouted (he knows me so well) then referred me for xrays and scan. He shouted again when the results were in. I've not only re-the damaged the tendons I originally did but added to them. Back in tape and brace and waiting for a visit to consultant number 8.
It's beginning to sound like one of those How many jokes..
You know, how many orthopods does it take to fix Poppy....
We don't know, she manages to collect a new one every time she passes go!!!
My current list is
1 shoulder
1elbow
2 hand
1 hips
1 knee
1 ankle
1 foot
Now 1spine
I don't actually think there is anyone else left,
So the answer is 8, but we'll ask colleagues to see her as she gets a bit complicated
I hate orthopedics
 
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Poppy2014

Poppy2014

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#20
Well I well and truly did it.

Please however you do it can you really send positive thoughts to my consultants.
What I thought was a back spasm brought on by my knee wasn't.

Tomorrow is D-Day I see the orthopaedic surgeon, the neurosurgeons, the Neuro psychologists, and a specialist in repairing tendon damage.

The pain in my back last month was caused by 2vertebrae collapsing and rupturing l5, s1 and s1, s2 outer discs. The ruptures are completely unable to be repaired and the discs have dried up.
Unfortunately it was only the outer disc that ruptured and the middle part has new been compressed into the the cal sac which surround the spinal cord. I have nerve cord compression which is intermittent and positional. This means they decide to try conservative management and out me on crutches.
Unfortunately at the same time I managed to rupture one of the 4 tendons in my groin which complicates matters as the treatment for back is gentle mobility and the treatment for groin is complete bed rest.
We are working on a modified version of the 2'
3 weeks in and instead of getting better I'm getting worse, my symptoms are in both legs now and the amount of pain relief I have is beyond anything sensible.

Tomorrow they have decided to meet each other and decide whether I'm having 1 huge operation on my back, knee and tendons or 2 operations 1on the spine and 2surgeons at the same op on my knee.
The pain psychologist is supposed to help me manage it.
Apparently it's not my decision... now where did informed consent go?

I absolutely hate me at the minute but surprisingly enough it isn't making me bounce or think stupidly. I'm just mad at being like this then I think I haven't got the energy to be angry and it really isn't worth it.

But honestly I'm absolutely terrified, I told the Dr a porky and said I could do something when I can't, because that can't is a red flag and gets me a one way ticket to urgent spinal surgery tonight.
I'll hold on till tomorrow and then I won't lie.
I just need to get my head around the fact that it's coming and I'm helpless to stop it.

Brought to you by a very rarely scared Poppy.
 
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