Gotta Get Swoll

Gym Weightlifting

I realize I need to lift.   Again. I used to lift. Several times I used to. Most recently was probably like 7 years ago. Shit. That was forever ago. Wait…I do recall lifting at FFC (Fitness Formual Clubs – a Chicago gym) for at least some period of time. So let’s say I haven’t really lifted in 5-6 years. And since I haven’t really run in 2(ish) years, I guess that’s not that surprising.

But with getting back into the running and being healthier and not being such a sloth thing…I started lifting again. Really, just to compliment running and to make running as easy as possible. The first month or so, even though I was just running 3 miles, my upper body was dying. And I like lifting. I kinda know what I’m doing. I like free weights and knowing my way around them. But I had decided not to lift lower body (despite my love of dead lifting) because I didn’t want to further exhaust them ham-hocks.

So for 7 weeks I lifted! My 2 days looked like this:

Day 1

  • Bench Press
  • Bent Over Row
  • DB Shoulder Press
  • Standing Tricep Extension
  • Barbell Curl

Day 2

  • Assisted Pull Ups
  • DB Side Lateral Raise
  • Tricep Cable Press Down
  • Cable Curl

For about 6 weeks I followed this, did 3 sets of each, with 8-12 reps. On week 7 I attempted to do the same routine, but with heavier weights to do 3 sets, but only 6-8 reps. The first round was rough…I felt my shoulder stretching on bench press and backed off. I was pretty conservative and didn’t have nearly heavy enough weight on it because I was still cranking out about 12 reps. Just proving that I could actually have had heavier weights the previous weeks. Then on week 8, I decided to go all out. Bench press was difficult without a spotter since I have difficulty getting my shoulder to get the weight (dumbbells) up to start with, but I got it. Bent over row- fine. Now for shoulder press. I got through 2 sets, and it was hard. I didn’t want to go lighter, so I rested up and with all my might tried to throw those weights up for the first rep.

Then my shoulder started dislocating. I am very acutely aware of what this feels like. It was on its way up and out. I stopped immediately. Dropped the weights. Freaked out and started crying. I am pretty sure the only reason it didn’t dislocate was because in my surgery to reconnect the labrum tears, they also added in a fake “bumper” on my shoulder socket that the bone would have to additionally jump to get out of socket. It was an awful feeling. I seriously live in a constant fear of my shoulders becoming dislocated. At home, the fear is manageable. At the gym or out in the world, it’s a pretty intense fear. Especially when I’m alone because if I do dislocate- it is quite an ordeal and I don’t think it would translate well in Scotland. My screaming, running around, getting to a wall and slamming into it and/or laying down and rolling to force it back into place and/or running up to strangers begging them to bear hug me and pop it back in.

It probably didn’t help that the week before I was trying to shove a suitcase overhead in a plane that was far too heavy for me to lift above my head. There was a definite shoulder pain. No attempted dislocation but I felt all the ligaments streeeeeeetch. I emailed my PT and she felt pretty sure they didn’t tear. But who really knows.

Then being away from the holidays I had every intention to lift to some degree. But I didn’t. So now, into double digit runs (whoop, whoop!) I need to get back to it. As much as I enjoy real weights…I think I’m stuck with lighter weights or at least using machines from here on out. In addition, my knee PT wants me doing leg press, lunges, and squats 2x a week as well. I’m going to have to figure out my plan of attack and what I feel comfortable doing ASAP. Because I really can’t end up like this:MCX1mE9CnY-8

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