Back in November of last year I unexpectedly found myself fighting for my life on the side of the road with a vicious roaming Rottweiler who decided he wanted to have my dog for breakfast.
Of course, this mad Paddy wasn’t having that and instead decided to protect him; long story short I came off second best and found myself in A&E requiring emergency surgery to one leg that the Rottie took a particular liking to.
Leaving hospital 4 days later in a cast and crutches and under instruction to keep the foot elevated for the following 3 weeks gave me a lot of time to think; would I ever be able to walk properly again, would running, jumping, cycling be out of the question? Would I even have full range of motion in the calf muscle which had been pretty much shredded in the attack?
Lots of questions, no answers. As the days went by I resolved that it was up to me to decide what those answers would be, the surgeons had done a great job and the path to full recovery was mine. So I hopped around the house, up & down the stairs and had quickly ditched the crutches.
The next obstacle came when it was time to have the cast removed; I was totally unaccustomed to injury or sickness and had never been in a hospital so I quite naively expected that once they cut the cast off then I would simply stand up and walk out the door. To be honest I had even planned to go to the beach for a swim! Instead what I was confronted with was a calf muscle area with a large wound where a lot of the actual muscle had been removed during surgery but also the remaining muscle had reduced in size from the lack of activity. Apart from that I had a severely swollen ankle due to the lymphatic fluid not being able to circulate past the wound. To top it off, I had little feeling in my foot and no ankle mobility, so definitely no beach! On getting home, I was shocked to weigh in at only 61kg; a loss of 5kg!
With the beach a large part of our life here on the Gold Coast and summer fast approaching I decided to walk the beaches as often as possible allowing the sea water to work its magic over the following months.
By the end of summer I was walking normally although I still had swelling of the ankle (which has still not completely disappeared to this day). After what I had been thru’ however I decided that I wanted more. I was happy with my progress to date, but felt that I could and should do more.
In May of this year I dared to inspire others by committing to a 12 week training program.
With my 47th birthday approaching many would question my reasoning but I seen it as all the more reason to get fit; not only for today but more importantly for the future. I decided on resistance i.e. weight training as the way to go, I won’t go into the science behind my reasoning here but happy to point anyone interested in the right direction.
So what was the program and how did this ole’ bloke go?
I began the journey on 5×5 Stronglifts which was a great introductory program to weights training. With a clear direction on exactly which exercises to do and when, the number of sets and reps; it was easy to focus on the job at hand. I must admit though that I have already taken what I have learned from other programs and made adjustments to suit my long term goals.
And my results?
First up, I feel great! Also, I have gone from a starting weight of 65kg in May to 70kg today. I have not yet done an accurate body fat measurement but suspect that I have dropped from 17% to 12% so very happy with the result. I plan to have actual figures for bodyfat and lifts prior to my birthday which was the agreed deadline to the program.
Apart from that, I am happy to say my calf is back to full size.
Obviously I don’t plan to stop here and have incorporated both the paleo diet and weight training into my everyday life.
So there you go; I dared to inspire and sincerely hope that by telling my story I have inspired you to make a difference.
It’s your life after all! Or as Junip says “It’s your life, your call”
- The Important of Weight (Resistance) Training (sharonmanuel.wordpress.com)