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Week 8: Boot Transition and Upper Body Exercises

I’ve started walking about a bit without the boot. There’s a heel-raise in my left (injured) shoe, and the PT has me using a crutch to normalize my gait a bit. In crowded and uncertain areas (the train to work, e.g.), I’ll still be using the boot. Technically, this is progress; but the length of the recovery is much more obvious now that I can feel exactly how weak and stiff the repaired leg is.

Recovery-wise, I’m starting to think about getting some fitness back so that I can start surfing and so forth when the leg is up for it. With the help of the trainers at my gym, I’ve worked out an upper-body program to start working myself back into fitness. This is a Crossfit gym, so not equipped with a bunch of machines. Here’s a quick list of the things that seem do-able without one leg, using the stuff one might find at a basic Crossfit facility:

Bench-press (at low enough weights to leave the legs mostly idle)
Strict pull-ups (on a bar that can be reached standing up, with legs tucked)
Ring-Dips (same set-up, rings dropped down so that one can enter or exit standing up, legs curled to dip).
Push-ups (with bad leg crossed over the good one)
Planks (same thing — legs crossed)
Seated or kneeling dumb-bell exercises (press, fly, row, lateral and front shoulder-raises, e.g.)
Russian twists w/ kettle bell
Banded tricep extensions, face pulls

That stuff can be stitched together into little sets of a few minutes. I’m doing them with the boot on for now, as much as a reminder not to be stupid as anything else. Not nearly as rewarding as a regular workout, but better than nothing. Doing a bit of interval training on the stationary bikes for conditioning. Hardly fun, but at least it’s a start on the road back.


  1. atr2014 wrote:

    Thanks for the list of exercises - I plan to incorporate a lot of them once my cast comes off. I’m just not comfortable working out with my cast still on. I’ve been doing basic pushups and ab exercises as well as simple leg strengthening moves at home for now. I’ve been lucky that I haven’t gained any weight (not that I can weigh myself but my clothes are getting looser, especially around my waist so it isn’t all attributed to muscle atrophy)since I have been very mindful of what I eat on a daily basis. I’ve found that since I am not working out nearly as much as I used to, I am not very hungry most of the time. I’ve also cut back on my Prosecco consumption to once a week so I am sure that has helped too.

    Thursday, July 17, 2014 at 1:40 pm | Permalink
  2. normofthenorth wrote:

    Don’t stop, both of you!
    ATR2014, what’s keeping you from weighing yourself?

    Thursday, July 17, 2014 at 5:14 pm | Permalink
  3. atr2014 wrote:

    Norm - I’m waiting until my cast comes off. A few pounds on my frame makes a big difference and I have no idea how heavy my cast is.

    Thursday, July 17, 2014 at 6:00 pm | Permalink
  4. normofthenorth wrote:

    Maybe 2-3 pounds? You could weigh it. Sit by the scale, rest each foot on the scale (the other one bare) and see what it reads. The difference is the cast.
    It’s also probably more important to see if it’s changing than to know your weight to the ounce.

    Friday, July 18, 2014 at 3:03 pm | Permalink
  5. simplesanj wrote:

    ATR 2014, for myself I’ve never found weight to offer up much useful data as to fitness — especially if one has muscle that’s going to drop off with inactivity. And aside from eating thoughtfully and pursuing the limited set of activities that are possible on one leg, I’m not sure what one can do at this stage. Reckon I’ll get a sense of my conditioning and strength as they permit me to take on activities where those things matter — and as one consequence of the bloody long duration of this rehab process, there’s plenty of time to recover.

    Friday, July 18, 2014 at 3:50 pm | Permalink
  6. atr2014 wrote:

    SimpplesanJ - my issue isn’t fitness since I am hardly getting my heart rate up compared to what I used to do when not injured. I did a lot of CF and ran almost daily (mileage would vary depending on what type of race I was training for). I am concerned about gaining weight from eating too much and not being active. I believe that if I watch what I eat, I should be ok weight-wise (meaning I should lose weight since I am losing muscle mass and not gaining extra fat from high caloric consumption). I know plenty of people who have suffered a long-term injury in which they gained a lot of weight, particularly in their midsection. I just don’t want that to happen to me, that’s all.

    Norm - not worth me weighing myself (hard to balance on one leg as it is and I’m ok with not knowing what I weigh right now). Agree that my cast probably weigh in the 3 pound range.

    Saturday, July 19, 2014 at 11:53 am | Permalink
  7. boredoutofmymind wrote:

    Nice work! Keep it up.

    @ATR2014 I have been using an Airdyne stationary bike and rowing machine for cardio.

    Tuesday, July 22, 2014 at 3:06 pm | Permalink

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