Wednesday, April 09, 2014

The Verdict on the Shoulder

Well, swimming is going to have to go on the shelf for at least a month or so.  I saw an orthopedic PA this morning and he said it's most likely a torn or inflamed labrum.  I had no idea what that was until a couple of hours ago.  Apparently it's the tissue surrounding the shoulder socket.  According to the internets, tears are often caused by repetitive motions or a sudden pull, such as when lifting a heavy object. 

Which basically confirms to me that I hurt it when I took that surfing lesson last September.  It started hurting the next day.  The instructor gave me a GIANT surfboard and I vividly remember several times when my arms were jerked as the waves pulled the surfboard out of my arms.  Although I'm heavy, I'm not super tall and I think that board was too much for me to handle.  Ever since then I've just been exacerbating the problem when I went to the pool and swam laps.
I have a prescription for an anti-inflammatory and start physical therapy in a couple of weeks.  Hopefully I will have improved enough to not reinjure myself when I do the St. John swim at the end of May.  Because there's no way I'm skipping that.  However, this makes me really glad we decided to do the swim with fins.  I definitely know I can swim 1 1/4 miles with fins, even if I don't train between now and then.

My fingers are crossed that we can get this fixed and it won't hamper my swimming long-term.

Monday, April 07, 2014

Getting Fit Part 2

Well, I didn't win the entire March Knit and Get Fit challenge, but I did pretty well, and I won a prize (a fancy hank of yarn)!  Here's what I most liked about this challenge.  First, getting points for workouts means I actually made an effort to get to the gym and work out.  I started Masters swimming again, regularly attended the morning strength class at the Y, and even did some walking and strength circuits on my own.

It was kind of gratifying when Jason joined me in those circuits one day and after one set, when I announced "Only 3 more rounds!", he looked traumatized.  But he did them all with me.  He's doing really great, actually, and lost seven pounds in March!

Second, we got points for posting pictures of the healthy meals we were eating, which is incredible motivation for actually eating healthy meals.  March wasn't perfect, food-wise, but it was pretty darn good.

By the end of the month, I hadn't lost any weight, but I had lost an inch on my waist and hips, and a couple of inches on my chest.  I was hoping for more, but the challenge was a really good jumpstart for me.

Now here's the bad part - I'm having a really hard time with my shoulder.  Push ups and shoulder exercises in strength training class are bad.  Swimming is bad.  I went swimming on Saturday with Rebecca and even though we did half of the workout kicking, we did enough with our arms that by Saturday night my shoulder and head were hurting.  Yesterday I realized the right side of my neck hurt.  It's the end of the work day on Monday and my shoulder and the right sides of my neck and head are still hurting. 

So today I made an appointment with an orthopedist. 

I know I can do the 1.25-mile St. John swim right this second, and snorkeling doesn't really involve the arms, so no matter what, our vacation at the end of May is intact.  However, I've skipped the last 2 weeks of Master's swimming because I don't want to aggravate the shoulder anymore than I already have.

So I've been walking.  A lot.  Since I seem to be useless for much else right now, my goal is to walk 10,000 steps per day in April.  Saturday I got 7000 steps, but I swam, so I called it good.  Every other day in April so far, I've walked at least 10,000 steps. 

I have a feeling I'll also be adding physical therapy to the routine in the near future.