View Full Version : Gym after surgery

21st July 2005, 10:32 PM
Hi guys, hope you are all well.

I have a bit of a question which i hope some of you can give me some insight into.
Over the last 3 months i have built up quite a bit. I have been on a bit of a mission with protein and the gym. I can now lift a fair old bit of weight and like my muscles lots. (vain i know!)

Anyway, after surgery which is still pencilled for October, will it be possible after time for me to continue with weights and stuff? I am concerned about injuring myself but at the same time want to get back to the gym asap. Also, how much muscle am i going to loose? I know my priorities but I am loving my arms and shoulders right now.

Your wise words of wisdom are always great.

21st July 2005, 10:38 PM
I talked to my doctor about excersising with my scoliosis and he said to pretend that your body is in a tube...and not to move your arms outside the tube. So to basically lift up and down but not OUT...does that make any sense? Anyway, I'm sure your doctor will let you know if you ask him!

21st July 2005, 10:41 PM
Yeah, I spoke to my surgeon about this, he said you are OK to return when you feel ready. He gave me no further info. The fitness consultants at my gym will not touch me with a barge pole!

21st July 2005, 10:55 PM
I think it depends on the fusion you'll have and how well you take it. I'm one year post op and still making excuses why I shouldn't go to the gym :roll: that's just cause I'm lazy though.. And I'm still scared to damage my back, especially since I can feel two screws (doc says they're not loosening but I don't trust him). He gave me the same advise though, just do stuff when you think you're ready for it
I'm sorry to say this but you'll be surprised how fast muscles disappear. You should've seen my poor legs when I got out of the hospital.. So skinny. But then again, there wasn't much muscle to begin with so maybe it's not the same for everyone

22nd July 2005, 02:51 AM
I was told that I couldn't lift more than 5 pounds for six months or until the fusion is solid.

I do basically whatever I want now though as long as my back isn't really sore.

Amazed Jean
22nd July 2005, 08:29 AM
Here's an easy test our doctor told my husband after shoulder repair surgery. First exercise your mind and then use your head. Don't go too fast and don't think you can shoot right out of surgery and climb walls or paint walls either. Then you can try some little stuff - like tying your own shoes -if it hurts even a tiny bit stop immediately and Don't do that again! Pain is never a great thing. It is your body telling you to STOP.

22nd July 2005, 12:14 PM
I'd certainly avoid any lifting until your fusion is solid, minimun 6 months and it may take up to a year.bear in mind, your fused spine will have only a few discs at the bottom to bear your bodies weight instead of the original unfused column, so don't punish those discs too hard.

22nd July 2005, 02:25 PM
When I go in the fitness room at school I stay away from any machines that involve lifting weights because I'm just not confident enough about using them with my back I am very worried about hurting and straining (sp?) it.

But if you feel confident enough then go for it, but stick to fairly light weights at first until your fully fused.

22nd July 2005, 02:37 PM
Ahh, oh well. Looks like i am off for a while. I bicep curl around 15KG per arm. So yeah, maybe not a good idea.

How about cardio work? tread mills and cross trainers? what times we looking at there?

22nd July 2005, 08:47 PM
As soon as you can walk at a fast pace without too much discomfort, get going on the treadmill. I would guess 6-8 weeks.

22nd July 2005, 09:32 PM
hey phil
im now 7 weeks post up, and am not aloud to lift more than 1kg also i cant have a less than 90 degree angle between my back and my thighs, the only thing i am able to do to rework up muscle is walking and lots of it... i do about a mile twice a day.

my muscles withered quite badly in the two weeks or so i was stuck in bed but i wasnt very muscley to begin with ( i have a "swimmers build" toned but not bulging :-)"

hope that helped a little

23rd July 2005, 12:11 PM
Thanks all. What i expected but not what i wanted to hear. Hardly worth me continuing to build up for all of a few months for it all to go. I am surprised that muscle can disappear in a matter of weeks. :(

23rd July 2005, 12:30 PM
The more and stronger your muscles are when you go in the more you come out with i would imagine, and keeping your lungs and heart strong with exercise can only help

its your choice :)

23rd July 2005, 11:31 PM
That's true Lizzie. How long you've been on your back determines how weak you are afterwards though - I was considerably stronger (although still as weak as a kitten) after my revision, because I was only lying down for 6 days, and more weak after my original surgery (two stages, horizontal for about 11 days).

The majority of the weakness will have gone in a fortnight, though. It's a bit of a drag but it stops you damaging yourself.

24th July 2005, 12:39 AM
I would keep going Phil your going to need all your strength to aid your recovery

24th July 2005, 12:38 PM
ah you see this young lady is full of wisdom beond her years ;-) lol

Keep us updated phil, we're here to help :angel:

24th July 2005, 12:59 PM
Originally posted by mark@Jul 23 2005, 10:39 PM
I would keep going Phil your going to need all your strength to aid your recovery
I fully agree with Mark! Just aim to be as fit as possible before surgery, it has a significant impact on how fast you recover.
Beside the physical benefits, regular exercise promotes a positive mental attitude!
After surgery you should follow medical advice and, of course, what your body is telling you.

Good luck! :-)

25th July 2005, 03:40 AM
Hey Phil-

I am the same way about the gym! I'm 20 years old so my health is really important to me. For the last 2 years I have been regularly going to stay in shape and then January I decided to really focus on weight training so I could strenghten my whole body for surgery. Well I can't even tell you how much it has helped me out. I just had my surgery on July 11th and I was in ICU for 4 days and then I went home! All the dr's were amazed how quickly I recovered from my surgery. Tomorrow is 2 weeks post-op and I can tell how much weight lifting has helped me recover, I am up and walking around, climbing stairs, and even going out with my friends! So def keep going with your weight lifting because it will help you out more than you will realize!!

<3 Annie

25th July 2005, 10:16 AM
The more muscle you&#39;ve got to begin with, the more you&#39;ll still have after the recovery :-) I&#39;ve been trying to recall back, and I think it was at about the 6 month stage that I first started trying to do light weights again - I was just very, very careful of how it felt. Personally I wasn&#39;t able to stick with it, because I&#39;d been very run down physically before the surgery, because of the pain and so on, and I was slow to recover from the revision. Had it been as it was after my first surgery, back when I was about the same age as you will be, I&#39;d have been fine to keep it going and build slowly back up.

It&#39;s also easier to regain what you have had than to build new, so it&#39;s definitely worth keeping up with now. It&#39;ll come back far faster than you expect once you get back to the gym afterward :-) You should also find that you can keep at least some of your muscles in good order just by doing resistance training without weights during the early stages of your recovery - that&#39;ll keep your arms and abs in shape. Your legs will largely take care of themselves, especially as you&#39;ll be putting a lot more pressure on them just to get up and sit down, while you&#39;re learning your new body.