Hey guys, I think this is my first thread on the nation, so here it goes…
I was born with a heart condition called tetralogy of fallot. While it is a very rare disease, it is still one of the most common types of congenital heart disease. The important details of the condition are a hole between the two lower chambers of the heart (which was fixed through surgery at 9 months) and a faulty pulmonary valve (which was partially-repaired at the same time).
The result had been some leakage through this valve, which caused the right side of my heart to enlarge. This enlargement resulted in abnormal beats. It finally got to the point where surgery was optimal.
So last Tuesday I drive down to Philadelphia as the ass crack of dawn to get papa a brand new pair of shoes, and by shoes, I mean a new pulmonary valve created from the tissue surrounding a calf’s heart. The surgery went as fantastic as open-heart surgery can. They put in the new valve without incident and they did what’s called a maze procedure to fix the rhythm of my heart until my right side reduces in size.
I made it out of the hospital about as fast as any of the doctors had seen, although I had the advantage of being 21 years old and in otherwise great health. So This past Friday, I went home.
And now to my questions…
Leading up to the procedure, I was by all accounts tiny according to the standards of T-Muscle. I was 5’10" and a lean 162. This weight, however, was intentional since additional size would have put unnecessary strain on my heart. I was benching my body weight (well, 165) for reps (6 or so), squatting 225 for reps (12 or so), and I recently had set a deadlift PR of 305 for 1 rep.
Unfortunately, by the time I left the hospital, I had dropped 10 pounds, although some of this was water due to the lasix I had been on in the hospital. Since coming off of the lasix, my weight has rebounded to a steady 155.
Here is where my restrictions come in… I am not allowed to lift anything over 10 pounds for another 5 weeks for so. And I don’t mean to say that they are encouraging me to beast out some 10 lb db curls or some flat db presses w/ the 5’s. In fact, I am basically to avoid lifting stuff as much as possible while my sternum is healing. I also will not be able to jog or do anything beyond walking until about that same time too.
Once I am given the go for lifting, it will be a slow process. There will be much pain associated with lifting much more than 10 lbs at the start. All in all, they tell me it will take up to a year to reach my strength levels from pre-surgery, however I am optimistic, especially on leg lifts.
So this is my predicament. What suggestions do you guys have for my recovery? I am hoping to not lose all of the little bit of muscle that I had. I am also hoping not to gain a whole lot of weight while I’m not lifting. I assume food is my only weapon right now. I have been eating clean since returning from the hospital… protein shakes spiked w/ leucine and superfood, lots of eggs cooked in coconut oil, fish oil, meats, oatmeal, etc. Is there anything else I can be doing over the next 5 weeks or so until I can start looking to move some weights around? Does anyone have any suggestions on a program for easing myself back into lifting once I get cleared?
While it is frustrating not being able to do anything right now, I am certainly excited at the prospect of ditching the size M shirts in time.
Thanks, I appreciate your time in reading this novel. And yes, I ran some searches and couldn’t find the information I was looking for.
And just for reference, here is a list of my current supps:
Protein powder (milk protein isolate and rice protein blend is what I’ve been taking since the surgery, I also of course have whey available)
And things I have that I’m not currently taking:
creatine (had been on it for a while, needed a break, probably will restart in a week or two)