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I was finally able to get around the house well enough, while using my crutches, to venture an attempt at a quick workout. This was about a week after my “incident” where I was struck by a hit & run driver while I waited for a traffic light to turn green. I was hobbling around my house while learning how to use my crutches, and I’d felt sufficiently confident, that I’d decided to venture a quick workout.
I had asked my son to roll one of the heavy bags onto the Jiu Jitsu mats, and to roll over a pair of 35 lb. and 50 lb. dumbbells -one dumbbell, each, on either side of the heavy bag. I still needed help to actually sit on the heavy bag. I was able to stand back up from the heavy bag, by using my crutches.
I then began my workout. I reasoned that I was sufficiently warmed up, by sliding around the house while using my crutches. I noticed that my arms, chest, and abs. were feeling an interesting combination of stress which I had never experienced before at the same time.
I started out with a set of seated dumbbell curls. Even while performing this movement with relatively light 35 lb. dumbbells, it felt strange not to be able to use the smaller, peripheral muscles of my body which I’d used to balance myself when I performed this movement while standing. I forced myself to punch out ten repetitions. I was psychologically miffed, after my third set: I USED to perform sets of eight repetitions with eighty pound dumbbells when I was still in my late 40’s. I was beginning to sweat by the time I’d completed my last (third) set of dumbbell curls.
I then moved over to the overhead, dumbbell triceps press. I swung the 50 lb. dumbbell onto my shoulder and began to exercise. I normally performed either the standing triceps extension -by way of a dumbbell-, or a standing triceps cable pull down. Again, it was strange to have to focus more on balancing myself while I was seated on my prone heavy bag.
I was sweating quite profusely by the time I had completed three sets of the overhead triceps dumbbell press, and transitioned to the dumbbell chest press. I had performed the dumbbell chest press whenever I’d worked out at home, prior to going to work, on my weightlifting days. I was still surprised by the change in the dynamics involved with the lack of use of my broken leg. Again, maintaining my balance seemed to be the primary issue. By the time I had completed three sets of the dumbbell chest press, I was drenched in my own sweat. I wasn’t breathing hard, so I was perplexed as to the reason why I would be sweating so heavily after a workout of such moderate intensity.
Fighting my self-doubts began to take on a significance which I didn’t want to acknowledge. I knew that my recovery time would be measured in months, not weeks. I realized that I wasn’t a 15 year old high school athlete, and despite my self-imposed goals toward recovery, I couldn’t rush the recovery process. I was able to sneak back into my classroom, after a few weeks. It was after-hours, and for only a couple of evenings per week. Despite the fact that I had a substitute teacher in place, I wanted to grade my assignments, and keep submitting lesson plans for my classes. I labored to travel to the restroom from my classroom (a distance of about 20 yards). Each of these issues became challenges for me to attack and overcome. I had to kindle and then regularly nurture the faith that I would, someday, recover from my injuries, and be able to live my life, once again.