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More gym goodness - 8 week update

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TheGymGuy

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Jan 3, 2011
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981
Location
Rockville, MD
Tom, no matter the valve, some exercise should be fairly safe. If you have mechanical you, in theory, cannot wear it out. With others, their lifespan should not really be affected, as they wear out age dependent more or less. If you plumbing, aorta, etc., are in decent condition, I do not see why exercise would not actually be a good thing to do ;)


I guess, I will add a video from last weeks squats of 365 x 5 x 5 sets and a rep-out of 345x10: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OWFNOZI2Cuk
 

ski girl

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Joined
Sep 14, 2010
Messages
683
Location
Perth, Western Australia
WAAAIT a minute . . . you were cleared to get back to serious weights only FOUR WEEKS post-OHS???

I had to wait 12 weeks to start doing much of anything, especially with my upper body! What does your surgeon know that the rest of ours don't?

Was anyone else out there allowed to lift weights at four weeks?
 

TheGymGuy

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Jan 3, 2011
Messages
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Rockville, MD
I self rehabilitated ski girl. ;) I did keep my surgeon up to date with my info/updates bi-weekly or so. I was not lifting much weight, but doing more body movements. After all only my sternum (bone) and heart and aorta (tissue and muscle) were operated on. Yes, vital parts of my body, but just like eveyrything else, and I mean every other injury a person can have, be it surgically or self inflicted (accident), EVERYTHING heals and heals at about same rate for each individual (individual dependent).

As my body let me know that I am ready for more, that is only minor ache from my activities, I pushed on. Doctors can only advise based on guidelines and personal experience, and they would give slightly different advice to themselves as they know themselves better than you or me. I made sure to introduce myself to my surgeon and make sure they know as much about me as possible, I sent them my training videos, my competition results, my self-collected bio-data, etc. I made sure to discuss those things before surgery and explain my goals and see what they say. I was looking for a reasonable surgeon that would be honest with me about my expectation and understand where I am and where I hope to be. One thing I liked about my surgeon is his honestly. There was one conversation where he said: "You know, that initial time post OHS will SUCK, and SUCK bad. You will loose lots of lean muscle as your body will be in a fight or flight mode, but you will recover." He also said that it will be safer to train post OHS with my parts repaired and that there is "NO REASON" why I would not be able to get back to 100% normal. I am off topic, but I think it is important to be honest with yourself, take all the inputs of the system, process them, and come out with safe outputs for each individual. Main thing is to press on and recover and get back to or in to a great condition.

Here is what it all boiled down to for me. If you tear a muscle, and I mean an average tear, you get 2-6 weeks off, if you break a bone you get 4-12 weeks off, etc., etc. So, post OHS you follow the same speed of tissue healing as anything else. The damage we had is a serious one, but the more you are active in any time during recovery the better you will get and be.
 

ski girl

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Sep 14, 2010
Messages
683
Location
Perth, Western Australia
Interesting! I've had two OHS and after the first one I tried to do some light weights and body-weight stuff at about four weeks despite being told wait 12 weeks. Result? My sternum never stopped hurting, occasionally so badly that I would almost drop to the ground in pain (randomly!).

Second OHS 11 months later and I obeyed instructions. Result? No pain.

My surgeon and cardio knew what I was all about as a competitive athlete too and I agree with you, there are lots of parts of our bodies that are completely unaffected by the surgery, but that sternum is involved in more than we think!

I'm still gobsmacked that you were able to do so much. Do you know how your sternum was held together? I have only three wires, although I've heard of others having more like a dozen; I wonder if that imparts extra stability that allows you to do more activity sooner???
 

ski girl

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Sep 14, 2010
Messages
683
Location
Perth, Western Australia
Interesting! I've had two OHS and after the first one I tried to do some light weights and body-weight stuff at about four weeks despite being told wait 12 weeks. Result? My sternum never stopped hurting, occasionally so badly that I would almost drop to the ground in pain (randomly!).

Second OHS 11 months later and I obeyed instructions. Result? No pain.

My surgeon and cardio knew what I was all about as a competitive athlete too and I agree with you, there are lots of parts of our bodies that are completely unaffected by the surgery, but that sternum is involved in more than we think!

I'm still gobsmacked that you were able to do so much. Do you know how your sternum was held together? I have only three wires, although I've heard of others having more like a dozen; I wonder if that imparts extra stability that allows you to do more activity sooner???
 

TomAlbers

Active member
Joined
Oct 11, 2012
Messages
34
Location
Hays, Kansas
Good stuff, I have been very active, jogging 4 miles a day, light weight workouts, had 6 wires in sternum, but have always been told that heavy lifting puts much more pressure on the aortic valve and should be avoided. This news is something I will bring up with my new surgeon. I do not have a mechanical valve and don't plan to for this one either. Glad to hear ski girl did so well 2nd surgery. I know it sucks, and I know that the sooner I move forward, hopefully the quicker my recovery. However, gym guy has given some hope for me on different forms of weightlifting...don't want to lift heavy, but I have stayed away from bench press. I agree every body's body is different, but I think it appears the research and philosophy keeps changing over time. Great stuff thanks for the great information to all 3 of you.
 

TheGymGuy

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Joined
Jan 3, 2011
Messages
981
Location
Rockville, MD
...
I'm still gobsmacked that you were able to do so much. Do you know how your sternum was held together? I have only three wires, although I've heard of others having more like a dozen; I wonder if that imparts extra stability that allows you to do more activity sooner???
I have 8 or 9 wires ;) For a big chested guy they needed at least that many. All the exercise I did initially was all lower body centered and as such did not use my upper body or sternum. Body weight squats, walking, speed walking, barely makes your chest move other than breathing ;)
 

ski girl

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Joined
Sep 14, 2010
Messages
683
Location
Perth, Western Australia
Wow that's a lot of wires, that might explain some of your recovery - your sternum won't be three times the size of mine! :) On the off chance I have to have a third OHS I'm going to demand more wires!

As a paddler with not much interest in my leg muscles I mainly wanted to get my shoulders and lats back post-op, which was how I managed to push too hard after the first op - doing overhead lifts etc. with a 5kg weight plate at three weeks . . . BAD ski girl! Keep up the good work GymGuy!
 

TheGymGuy

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Joined
Jan 3, 2011
Messages
981
Location
Rockville, MD
Wanted to update this post with some progress 9 months later. It has been almost 9 months since my surgery and I have gained respectable strength in all my exercises:

Squat is up to 475lbs (215kg) - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A5wxKB1JhD0 (Vadim - SQ - 385x1, 415x1, 445x1, 465F, 465x1, 475x1 PR - 2012-12-10)
Bench Press is up to 325lbs (147kg) - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KYNCbfRutSE (Vadim - BP - 295x1, 315x1, 325x1 PR - 2012-12-06)
Deadlift is up to 565lbs (256kg) - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PGd2H0sRPeE (Vadim - DL - 315x3, 405x2, 475x1, 525x1, 555x1, 565x1 - 2012-12-21)

Currently, I am training for a competition in 3 months.

Train hard, play hard,
GymGuy
 

coffeelover

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Joined
Nov 15, 2011
Messages
260
Location
MN
GymGuy,
That is SO awesome! Way to go!!!

Like you I am 9 months out--close to 10 months) and loving the workouts I do several times a week.It is GREAT! I too wear a HR monitor while working out. Helps keep in range and not to push the pace too fast when I run.

Good luck with your training as you prepare for your first competition!
 

coffeelover

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Joined
Nov 15, 2011
Messages
260
Location
MN
You are an inspiration to all of us!
Best of luck to you as you prepare for your competiton!
 

TomAlbers

Active member
Joined
Oct 11, 2012
Messages
34
Location
Hays, Kansas
Vadim, thanks for your updates, it keeps me motivated. I talked to my surgeon about lifting and he said in a couple months I could do whatever I wanted. Good luck with the competition my man and keep up the great work.
Tom
 

Ovie

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 25, 2011
Messages
490
Location
Sioux City, Iowa.
Gymguy, I've recently become more motivated to hit the gym, after surgery I went from 225 to 210, but then I started work again, got sluggish, and have gained more weight then I would have liked. I'm about 235, I'm 6-6'1 and so I'm not terribly small. I've been trying to watch what I eat, and getting better, I've been going to the gym 2-3 times a week, however I feel like I don't have a routine, or one that's really not going to show results, I don't know what to do free weight style, or what exercises, I kind of just go and try a bit of everything (alot of machines), where or what can I do to look and see the order and exercises I should do to build muscle, tone, and stamina? I'm hurting for a routine but just completely clueless. Also, I know there are protein shakes, bars etc, are those good to use, and lastly and meals I should eat and ones I shouldn't. Obviously no fast food and sweets etc, I understand. I'm willing to do what it takes, I just don't know what to do. I'm going to start doing the gym 4x a week, so anything you can recommend, or videos and links you can provide I'd be very greatful.

Also if anyone else has advice, love to hear it!

Thank you.
 

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