Tag Archives: Shoulder Surgery

New Year, New You, New Resolutions, New Blah

Lots of people have done a year in review but this year has been kinda dull and really slow, it has been eventful so I’m not so much going to do a year in review as I am going to point a few highlights out from 2017. 

L Plate

L Plate

Late last year my shoulder surgery was delayed for one reason or another so to fill the gap I booked a dozen or so driving lessons over the 4 weeks gap between cancelled surgery, after passing my driving theory test first time a few months before. In the theory test I scored pretty close to a perfect score. Only 1 question wrong in multiple choice which still haunts me as I know exactly which question it was. I was also a little slow on one or two hazard perceptions videos but still nearly perfect is good enough. I started my driving lessons towards the end of January. This meant I had driving lessons in the frost, in the fog, in the snow, in the rain and ice and all that’s in between giving me really good all around experience. The worst was stuck in rush hour traffic on a 1/4 mile hill, which moved a few cars at a time, and meant non-stop constant hill starts, which was about my 4th driving lesson so yeah that wasn’t fun. When I passed my test about 4-5 weeks later I had 3 minor faults so my Driving Instructor John Swan did a pretty good job, in a very short space of time and literally just a few days before my surgery. 

Shoulder Surgery

AC Joint Grades I to VI

AC Joint Grades I to VI

My shoulder surgery turned out considerably more complex than planned, originally it was a Rotator Cuff Repair, and AC Joint Repair, it changed something much more once my shoulder was opened. My shoulder healed record fast, I was discharged from physio in just over 2 months, out of a planned 5-6 months. The surgeon wanted to discharge my left shoulder at 4 months, as fully healed and fine, out of an expected 9-12 months. All in all the healing process, very quick for the amount of work I had no one expected it to be so quick.

My return to the gym hasn’t been so quick, the many areas bone was cut away, or ground down was raw and exposed and then left soft and gooey, waiting for the scar tissue and hardening has been a long slow process. It was expected to be 18-24 months before fully healed. I could put some moderate weights on it at 6-7 months, by some I mean about 40% my maximum, where as a month before surgery I could manage about 20% of my maximum. For example bench-press, my max as been around 115-120kg (including the bar), a month before my surgery I could barely move 30kg with bad form, now I can move 50kg for 8, so definite improvement but still long way to go. 

I have done my first actual shoulder work out, including farmers walks, waiter walks, shoulder press, shrugs and upright rows, my grip is screwed, not sure I’ll get that back due to a torn tendon in my forearm and damage to my hand, so maybe stuck using straps and hooks. It has however 100% improved from pre-surgery, however under load when the bones appear to be touching, OUCH!

I don’t think I’ll ever be able to squat again, the work on my glenohumeral has almost certainly left me with impingements meaning I can’t get my arms into position. Maybe some yoga or pilates will help, but I don’t know. 

Rich Piana Died

Rich Piana at Body Power 2017

Rich Piana at Body Power 2017

For all the controversy, hassle, and fanfare over the Rich Piana crazy train, the man was a decent guy and a powerful inspiration to many. I don’t agree with his Synthol or PMMA or whatever the hell he was injecting to get his crazy size but he loved his fans and had a lot of respect for them. Way way more respect then almost anyone I have ever seen I’ll never forget him apologising to fans waiting while he did press photo ops, or for the long wait to see him, or even when he took his lunch/drinks breaks. 

Not ONCE, did I notice him rush a fan, cut one short, he spoke to them for as long as they wanted, and had a laugh, happy posing with fans, by all accounts he was a rock solid guy. 

The only other person who was equally popular who was a chatterbox was Kai Greene, he was being told off all the time his people for taking too long with fans. 

 

My Year 

Most of my year has been waiting, recovering and planning. Now I’m I’d say 85-88% recovered and able to put some power down on the left shoulder, and I’m not sure I want the right shoulder done. 

I started training again between Christmas and New Year’s Eve, so that gives me 9 months out. I’ve lost about 1okg of muscle mass (rough estimate based on my monthly bio-impedance),  and gained about 6-7kg total weight, which is pretty diabolic. About 2 months of that was pretty no gym and comfort eating a lot. I’m getting back on the ball slowly now. 

Diet is horrific to reign back in to boring stuff again, I may need to just go for a crash and go meat, veg, sweet potato, and try reset it. 

A Manchester Based Photographer and Website Developer with interests in Strongman, Fitness and Geekery.

Shoulder Update May 2017

Man Shoulder Unsplash

Its been a while since I posted about my shoulder so I figured I’d post an update. Its officially been about 6 months since I last had a heavy lifting session in the gym, despite the surgery being about 10 weeks ago. My cardio endurance isn’t bouncing back, mostly I suspect due to the pain inhibiting me during the session. I’ve had significant loss in size, my traps are nearly normal, biceps and triceps shrunk, chest shrinking all the usual stuff which happens with 6 months no lifting, nearly 3 of them post operatively.

My physiotherapist is really impressed with my recovery rate, apparently mostly people by 3 months are just getting basic movement back, but I have a 90% movement, there are some extreme ends of movement I can’t quite do, hand behind my back is still a struggle some days for example. I have however been given the go-ahead to begin some gentle easing back into the gym, which is normally 7-8 months down the line.

There are some issues though, half of this is currently speculation. My fine motor control is shot to shit in my shoulder, my physio says the big muscles are always taking over not letting the smaller muscle work, which has reduced my fine control. My left shoulder blade isn’t moving normally its flaring out. I think this is because my shoulder has been tensed and held tense for stability for so long that the little muscles have been left out.

Complications

There is also significant weakness in the smaller muscles, the big muscles are still strong but over powering the lil ones. This big muscle thing has caused a few sprains at connection points, it seems my infraspinatus and one of the connection points on the top of my scapula are injured which is speculated because the big muscles are taking over.

I have also injured my right forearm, because I’ve been babying my left arm, the increased workload on my right arm has caused an injury not unlike tennis elbow, this is exacerbated by the existing injuries which affected my grip. Once I start using my left arm more and I can rest my right arm a little its suggested this will improve.

Because of the work done on my glenohumeral socket, when my arm moves to the extreme ranges of movement the humorous pushes against the raw exposed bone and/or scar tissue which means randomly movements are painful. This is getting better though. Once I start actually lifting I suspect the humorous pressing into the socket won’t be fun, I just hope the fibrous layer of scar tissue gets thick enough to with stand the pressures. 

The Future

I have to now work on a very basic and light workout plan. Its going to be hell not just stacking the plates out. I’m going to have to start benching with just the bar at 20kg, maybe even lighter, the upside is I can work on perfect form and correct previous mistakes. 

I’ve already planned shoulder work with internal and external rotations, and various rotator cuff exercises. Also been working on more stretching, I’m going to have to really baby the shoulder and work on it slowly. I’m still inhibited a little by the right shoulder being injured but I need to see how my left heals before I sort that one out.

I’m going to add some TRX, Cable Pod and some light machine work in over the next week or so, and see how that pans out. Not sure I’m ready for barbells and dumbbells quite yet. 

I’m also getting up to speed work wise, still have 100s of emails to reply to, because new emails come in daily, I reply to them and older ones get left. I reply to older ones an new ones get left, so no matter what I do its 10 steps forward, 2-3 steps backwards but I’m getting there.

Mans Back image by Unsplash.

A Manchester Based Photographer and Website Developer with interests in Strongman, Fitness and Geekery.

Unavailable Until Further Notice

20th March 2017 – Update

I’m going to start working through the backlog, catch up on forums, hit emails, etc. The breakthrough pain is still brutal but I need to get back on it. 

I’ll update more once I get some notes and stuff from the quack. 

17th March 2017 – Update

I had my follow up today. I have a more complete list of what they did, still a few unclear bits. It seems lots of this were “discovered” during the process so they fixed it “while they were there”. 

My shoulder socket were in a bit of a mess, lots of debris and osteophytes on the socket part. The ball part of he shoulder were in reasonably good condition, which is apparently a good thing. I’m not quite sure how the socket side can be ruined by the ball is fine.

The GHJ had some osteophytes removed and a “slither” of bone cut away. The AC Joint were removed, which is part of the scapula and collarbone cut away. I think they did something to the Bursa under the AC, but I didn’t understand what they meant. 

They did a subacromial decompression, but the ligament were apparently in good condition so they shaved it, sectioned it. Some other ligament were also cleaned up, one which is deep inside my shoulder. 

I really need to speak to the surgeon but I don’t have an appointment for ages, its all physio and shoulder clinic. I have requested a copy of the surgical notes so I can see it all and work out from there. 

8th March 2017 – Update

Well I’m still here, the pain isn’t even close to what I’m dealing with now. The muscle pain, cuts/scars aren’t too bad, I can touch them and they are tender but not bad. However where they have cut the bone away, holy poopy, that really hurts and the drugs don’t help much. 

I don’t have an exact list of what they did, the operation notes were like nearly a whole page and I didn’t understand all of them. The rotator cuff were fine, the shoulder capsule were fine, the GHJ (I assume glenohumeral joint) were arthritic and repaired, the AC Joint were re-sectioned (removed), and a Subacromial Decompression were performed. I can’t remember what else were there, I only got a brief look while the pain clinic were sorting my drugs out.

Finally Here

Well its finally here, I’m getting my shoulder surgery done, as a result I won’t be online much and I get the feeling the times I will be, I’ll probably be dribbling from the pain medications. 

I’ll try to keep on top of urgent messages, but mobile signal is shocking and half the hospital doesn’t have WiFi, so I can’t promise anything. 

I’ll see you on the flip side ๐Ÿ™‚

p.s. There are a few queued up posts which I already wrote, which may post after my surgery.

A Manchester Based Photographer and Website Developer with interests in Strongman, Fitness and Geekery.

Shoulder Surgery and Driving Test

Austin Powers 3 Point Turn

Austin Powers 3 Point Turn copyright of Warner Brothers.

January is turning in to somewhat of a monstrous month on the whole, and February is shaping up to be chock full of pain and misery. The first 3 weeks of 2017 have been monstrous, and the next month is shaping up to be equally horrific.

Welcome to 2017, its not exactly year I had in mind… in any way, shape or form. 

Shoulder Surgery

My Pre-Op and Surgery have clashed not once but twice with my driving, and now the surgery classes badly with some work related issues; same day to be exact. The surgery clashed with my Driving Test, and the hospitals waiting list manager were shall we say unsympathetic and unwilling to change the date. This may end up being a moot point as I’m getting ill, I have a sore throat, and shivers. I seem to be coming down with a cold or flu and less than 2 weeks til the surgery. Again the waiting list people don’t seem concerned even though all the NHS Documentation paints a very grim picture. 

Aside form that, there does seem to be a little discrepancy, the lady who also weren’t very sympathetic told me I were having slightly different surgery to what the surgeon / consultant told me. They did confirm the two biggies which are Subacromial Decompression and AC Joint Excision. I assume once they open it up they will do whatever else is needed which were debridement and clean up stuff. I’m still praying my Rotator Cuff and Glenohumeral something are in good condition and don’t require any intervention.

Driving Lessons and Test

I finally got around to sorting driving lessons, literally after 1 lesson I got the notice for surgery and it all clashes, so I’m not going to have time to fit it all in and get to 100% test standard. Since then 1 lesson were cancelled due to snow, and 2 needed to be cut a little short due to traffic. Better to bank the time than sit in traffic.

I’m struggling with two things, one of them is alluding me and its not getting easier, the other is procedure. Bizarrely the things most people struggle with (3 point, parallel and bay parking) I have nearly nailed. 3 point I have never once hit the curb.

Even when I had to go all Austin Powers (Spy who shagged me) and do a 10 point point in a narrow road. Seriously, The instructor actually compared the amount of turns to the above clip, and still didn’t hit the curb. Other more simple stuff but potentially more important isn’t coming easy. I need more time on the actual road, a longer gap between lessons to practice.

I think the added pressure from the surgery and other stuff has just left me not in the best mindset. I left it too late I fear to actually sort enough lessons or perhaps not enough time to practice due to the lemon car I purchased.

The Future

The pisser is I’m not sure I will have recovered in time for Body Power 2017, which I think will the first one I will have missed since it started ๐Ÿ™ This year its in the middle of May (19th-21st) at the NEC in Birmingham. A little bit sucky as I already things in place and moved work around so I can do the show again. Every year I end up getting a different bit of work and missing at least 1 day, this year I’ve planned it all bang on and now surgery is just a few months before the show.

On a side note, this post has left me really wanting to watch Austin Powers, I think I need to check if I its on Amazon Movies or order the boxset

Austin Powers video and still capture used for commentary and comedy purposes, I do not own copyright to either of them. I am using them under the fair use clause to parody an event which happened. If you are the rights owner (New Line / Warner Bros) and wish me to remove them, please use the contact form.

A Manchester Based Photographer and Website Developer with interests in Strongman, Fitness and Geekery.

Happy New Year for 2017

WARNING: WALL OF TEXT

Well its a new year, as per usual I have no real resolutions nor plans to create any. The lifestyle changes I made last year which could be considered resolutions. They just happen to start with a new year, or a new month in the case of reducing my sugar intake (July-ish)) and increasing my cardiorespiratory fitness (April-ish). 

I’ve been thinking about what I would like to achieve in 2017, and decided that again no resolutions but more some lifestyle changes and objectives. I debated posting or rather sharing them here since its such a clichรฉ to blog about them, and I’m not sure this blog is the place either.

1, Driving

Top of my list is finally sorting a driving license out. For someone who has owned multiple cars, many number plates and actually understands how a combustion engine works, I don’t actually drive. I’m hoping the fact I passed the theory test with a near perfect score of 49/50 on the Multiple Choice and 67/75 on the hazard perception, that it will be easy to learn the practical part. I have never had a single lesson and managed that. 

I’m so confident that I’ve already booked a practical test for less than a month away, and I still haven’t had a single driving lesson. I really should book some lessons, 2017 will be the year I pass. 

Confidence much.

2, Fun

I’ve been that busy sorting everything else out, I appear to have lost track of actually having fun in every sense of the term. I’m not quite sure how I shall interpret this, but I’m going to try work on it. 

I may actually try the whole date thing, so I have someone to Netflix and chill with. The only Netlix and chill I do, it more AmazonTV and chilled Wild Turkey and Ice Cubes. Amazon and Chill…ed Beverage as I call it.

I need to think of more fun things, not sure I remember how to do that. 

3, Health

Early on in the year I expect I’ll be having potentially major shoulder surgery will will knock out a large part of my health plans for the year. Mostly strength wise, certainly upper body work will be wiped out for many many months. During the rehabilitation I’ll be going back to basics, and hopefully correcting my bad form and enhancing my lifts. Over the years I’ve picked up bad habits “just get it up”, rather than maintain solid form. 

This also gives me an opportunity while working on my recovery and rehab unable to lift much, so I’ll be working on increasing my cardiorespiratory health. I’m going to work on hitting the 100km cycle ride this year (2017) as a target. Maybe aim for 100 miles next year, who knows. Keep the small achievable steps for now. Based on my current efforts that’s about 3 and 1/2 hours of riding with some short breaks added. 

4, Photography

I plan on making time in 2017 to actually do photo-shoots that I want to shoot. Its been a long time since I shot something I actually wanted. Around 5 yrs ago, I approached a friend of mine Beckie Armitt about doing a very dark and twisted Harley Quinn photoshoot. This is long before any dreams of suicide squad existed, had to be 2010 maybe 2011 and certainly before Halloween 2016 became Harleyween. It however got side tracked and things went another way, I recently mention it to her and she said “You should have explained more about what a Harley Quinn was” heh. I have loads of similar plans which could be unique. 

I’d also like to get back to shooting some stock images along side, in the fitness, health, and similar niches. I use about 200 pieces of stock a year, about half is free stock the rest paid for. I should be shooting my own again. 

5, Websites

I not too long ago (March) I consolidated all my blogging here into one blog. It still doesn’t feel right posting some things here, that goes for both private stuff and professional stuff. Some times code based posts feel wrong here, other times personal blogs feel out of place, as do rants and such so I’m curating and censoring myself, which can be sucky. I’m going to work on this. 

I am also changing my operating method, currently I have a few dozen website, I plan to cut this down to 2-3 bigger sites.

Bigger sites will take more work for less return in the short term but the long term potential and return is massively improved. 

The Summery

I don’t know what else to say here, were going to post a year summery but so much has been censored and removed from my blogging it will would look out of place. I also didnt’ get a complete year or blogging. I will post a summery next year, and see how my 5 points above pan out. 

A few days ago someone told me I need to message more when they don’t reply as they read messages when they are unable to reply then forget when they are free heheh, so I’m going to try to message people more without feeling stalker-ish or pushy. I figure this should be here too. 

P.S. I left this post without a picture or any pictures as I don’t really want any reading it ๐Ÿ˜› 

A Manchester Based Photographer and Website Developer with interests in Strongman, Fitness and Geekery.