Surgery Recovery: Starting Over

It’s been quite awhile since I’ve posted anything and for good reason too.  As some of you may know I have had a torn shoulder (labrum) since the beginning of 2012.  Having already signed up for a plethora of races I opted to simply push through and finish.  This year has been a real eye opener for me, I learned that no matter what the circumstances the mind is incredibly powerful.  It’s been quite the ride and I’ve met a lot of inspiring individuals, I’m beyond thankful for everything that has happened in 2012, from completing my Trifecta (Spartan Sprint, Super and Beast), to finishing the Death Race, running my first marathon and being one of the first to race in the Ultra Beast (the first ever marathon distance obstacle race).  The year has been filled with monumental achievements that have only amplified my desire to help others live a happy, healthy, adventurous lifestyle.

Shoulder Surgery Anthony Matesi

Pre-Surgery

Today I find myself starting over. November 30th I went into surgery to have my shoulder repaired by Dr. Mark Bowen.  When I first went to him to have my MRI results examined he was a bit shocked at how bad my shoulder was torn.  I remember him saying to me, “your shoulder is extremely bad for someone your age, no matter what you will need surgery eventually.” As the year progressed I was completely unable to do any standard chest or shoulder exercises. Yes, I chopped wood and climbed walls and competed until almost the very last month before surgery but I could feel my upper body becoming weaker by the day.  We decided together that it was better I have surgery sooner than later.

After surgery Dr. Bowen informed me that it was worse than he thought and just a scope wasn’t enough, he had to perform an full repair.  Thankfully the Doc has assured me that as long as I follow his instructions and care of myself throughout the recovery process I will be back to normal.

shoulder surgery torn labrum full repair

Post Surgery

The first two weeks were very challenging. I was restricted to always wearing a sling and since I’m left-handed I no longer had access to my dominant arm. Eating, drinking, brushing my teeth, taking a shower, everything became a challenge.  It’s amazing how our body allows us to adapt in these situations. After the first two weeks I went in for my follow-up appointment and everything checked out a-okay. Dr. Bowen gave me three to four more weeks of wearing the sling when I go outside and when I sleep, otherwise I just have to keep my elbow metaphorically Velcro’d to my side. Basically I’ve become a partial T-Rex.  It’s all good though every day I continue to do my extremely basic exercises and I can see improvement.

The past few weeks have taken their toll on me however. I’ve found myself feeling very tired, partially due to restless nights and uneventful days. I’ve been working from home which is convenient but very boring when you are by yourself 90% of the time.  I decided today that this lethargic state of being had to be put to rest. I got off my ass, out of my bed and off the couch, took it downstairs to my basement and hopped on the recumbent bike. I knocked out a nice 30 minutes on the bike and then continued on to a short ab and leg workout to get things back in motion.

Workout:

  • 30 Minutes Recumbent Bike
  • 100 Bosu Ball Air Squats
  • 100 Sit ups
  • 100 Leg Lifts
  • 100 Supermans (with frequent holds)

As expected my endurance is completely shot to hell, but our bodies have an amazing sense of memory. I am confident that with some consistency I will be back to my normal self in no time. The plan for now is to ride the bike often, work the abs, legs, and core as much as possible and start physical therapy in two to three weeks. It’s all about finding a happy medium. I’m feeling very excited that I’m back in action and can already tell that my body is responding very well to the exercise. I expect my energy levels should come back within a week.

This is just another obstacle in the game of life and I’m ready to jump, climb, and tackle it from every direction necessary.  I may be starting over, but that’s okay. It’ll all be worth it. This is just another beginning.

 

Leave a Reply