T Nation

Rebirth of the Juggernaut: Post Knee Reconstruction


#1

[quote]Clutch wrote:

I have suffered
For your sins
But now is when
My fun begins

If I hit you
Turn your cheek
You are righteous
But you are weak

Orgy-Porgy, Ford and fun
Kiss the girls and make them one
Boys at one with girls at peace
Orgy-Porgy gives release

American dream
Turns to dust
So give us a God
That does not rust

Points of light
Quickly fade
You are food
But you are saved

Juggernaut

[/quote]

If dramatics aren’t your thing, I apologize, but this log is as much for me as it is for you now. Going to be a lot more motivational stuff compared to my last one.

Background:

-Been competing in strongman since Sep 2013. On 10 Oct 2015, I ruptured my ACL and shredded my lateral meniscus performing a 775lb Yoke carry for 30’ (made it 29’, went for a quick pick up and the leg bent the wrong way).

-On 17 Nov, I got my ACL reconstructed from my hamstring and my meniscus trimmed out (it was too far gone to try to restitch, but I still got to keep most of it).

-In the weeks post op, I’ve just been sticking with dips and chins, but now I’m ready to return to training for real. This log will document that journey, all the way to successful recovery and competition.

I am not done.

Training plan:

4 days a week of resistance training, 1 day of events, grip training when possible.

-Training will be as such
–2 upper body days
–2 lower body days

-Upper body days will be as such
–Bench and seated overhead press with 5/3/1 progression (PR set and FSL). Assistance work as possible (right now, whatever I can get done without putting pressure on the healing leg. Lots of dips, chins, and super lightweight dumbbells).

-Lower body days will be as such
–Anything I can do with the good leg (single leg squats, leg curls, leg extensions, etc) and flexing the healing leg for an equal amount of reps. Will train core and neck on these days as well.

-Current events plan is to pull the prowler arm over arm until more possibilities open up

-Grip training will be whatever I can do (Captains of Crush for now).

Diet:

Prior to this point, I was being very restrictive in my nutrition, and was walking around at about 185 at 5’9. I was losing fat before the injury, and after the fact wanted to keep my bodyweight down to keep pressure off the injured leg.

I am taking the lessons I learned in nutrient quality from that experience, but I am sick of eating so little, so I will be gradually increasing food quantity, attempting to add some quality bodyweight to my frame. Goal is to not get fat but put on some muscle still.

I have not yet started official physical therapy, but in the meantime have been given some movements to perform at home. Once the real PT starts, I may document that as I go.

Thanks for following along. Stay tuned for more.


Rehabing ACL Reconstruction
How Can You Program Without Squats?
Knee Surgery Pending, Need Template Help
5/3/1 While Injured
Grip Training with Hand Grippers
Training After Meniscus Operation?
ACL Surgery - How Long Did You Wait?
Leg Work for Injured Knee
531 + Breathing Squats in ACL Reconstruction Rehab
T3hPwnisher's Log
#2

Definitely in.

Inspiring as always


#3

dagill: Always glad to have you along. Thanks for following.


So based on my screen name and the punisher skull tattoo on my arm, it’s probably no secret that I’m a marvel comics junkie. Probably going to be a lot of comic scans with this log.


Axle bench press
Bar x 10
75x10
115x10
165x10
205x5
255x8
205x13

Notes: I’m back. As per my normal “returning from injury” protocol, I’m using a slightly different movement so that I don’t get caught up in comparing PRs. Went axle over barbell, going to stick that way for a while yet. Didn’t have any 1rms to use for plotting out 5/3/1, so I’m going to call this my 5s week, use the numbers in a 1rm calculator, and use that to get my training max for the next few weeks. This was with zero leg drive, as I’m not able to brace my legs (nor would my surgeon want me to), and they were all pretty decent grinds.

Dips
5x15

Notes: Until more avenues for assistance work open up, I’m going to be doing a lot of dips. Plan is to use a more upright style on this day to emphasis the triceps, and a more forward style on my overhead day to emphasize the chest.

3 way shoulder raise giant set
3 rounds

NG Chins
15x10
1x30

Notes: The 15x10 is sets performed in between sets of everything else. The 1x30 was done at the end, cycling clusters of 5 reps with the various hand spacings on the swiss bar for 2 full rotations (wide, normal, close grip).

General notes: Weighed in at 184.4 this morning. First time weighing me in for 2 weeks. Weird to see such a low number, but now I have a place to grow from. Great to be training again for real.


#4

In - as always.

Loving the positive attitude, keep at it.

Have you any local hydrotherapy facilities nearby? Definately helped me with progression. Worst case youtube, a pool and a few different strength bands, kickboards, etc. I’d highly recommend this as part of your rehab. It will be sore after but you can really work hard in the water with the benefit of bouyancy the water gives.


#5

[quote]raven78 wrote:
In - as always.

Loving the positive attitude, keep at it.

Have you any local hydrotherapy facilities nearby? Definately helped me with progression. Worst case youtube, a pool and a few different strength bands, kickboards, etc. I’d highly recommend this as part of your rehab. It will be sore after but you can really work hard in the water with the benefit of bouyancy the water gives.[/quote]

Awesome idea, I’ll be sure to look into it. I definitely have access to a pool, and I’ll have to see what my physical therapist has in store for me.

Thanks for following along. Your contributions have been very helpful.


#6

Definitely back in. I look forward to seeing how fast you come back.

Also, that second picture is a Colossus-as-Juggernaut one, right? I’m behind on my comics due to time, but I know Colossus was the Juggernaut for a while. I’m up on my Marvel movies and Netflix, but comics take more time than I can devote…


#7

Copied.

[quote]dagill2 wrote:

[quote]T3hPwnisher wrote:
The surgery was a success, and I have a new ACL from my hamstring tendon. The general anesthesia kicked my ass, as it usually does to me, and I basically fasted 24 hours yesterday due to being queasy, but I have my appetite back now.

I’m not going to lie, the pain is pretty ridiculous. I have a pretty high pain tolerance, but this is just stuff I can’t fathom. It feels like my leg is both being squeezed in a vice and ripped in half. I am not shy taking my percocet, but I can tell exactly when it wears off.

Going to be taking the next day or so light. If worse comes to worse and I’m still laid out, I’m going to hit some band exercises while sitting on the couch.

On the plus side, I can actually already put weight on the leg. It’s weird: I’m healthy now, not hurt. I have to get that in my head.[/quote]
Great news man, expecting to see great things from you, as always.[/quote]
x2. I’ve stopped in here a bit over the past couple months, but this pretty much sums up how I feel.


#8

Im in without a doubt!


#9

I’m in no doubt about that!


#10

OTHSteve: Thanks for following along. Definitely hoping for a fast and effective recovery.

That scan is actually right after the story arc you mentioned. Colossus loses the Juggernaut powers and Cain Marko gets them back at a substantially higher amount, which is why his appearance is somewhat different than normal. The Colossus-Juggernaut thing was pretty cool too though (Colossus was my favorite good guy X-men, but still wasn’t quite as cool as the real Juggernaut, haha), and I’ll definitely be using a few of those scans as well, along with some traditional Punisher stuff too.

LoRez: Much appreciated dude, and glad to see you back on the forums. Always appreciate your knowledge of the history of the iron game.

FarmerOwen: Thanks for being here man. I know I can count on you for some motivational images, haha.

isdatnutty: Thanks man. Happy to have you here.


Woke up at 183.4 this morning. Really need to get my diet sorted out. It’s funny: when I was walking around at 203, my eating habits were very destructive and I needed to fix them. Now, my eating habits are STILL destructive, just in a different capacity. I’ve learned how to eat well, but not enough. It’s always a balancing act.

Plan is to get some grip work done in the afternoon and my lowerbody workout this evening.


#11

Just now catching up on your old log and sorry to hear about your knee!! Glad the surgery went well and looks like you are on a good road to recovery. Goes to show even if you have a major injury you can still train what is trainable and not make any excuses to get out of shape and lazy. Pretty inspiring stuff and looking forward to following as always! Keep up the good work


#12

I had the same surgery on Sept 22nd except I didn’t have any significant meniscus damage. I tore mine playing basketball. It sounds like I had a lot less pain than you did. I don’t know if that is because of the meniscus. I had a lot of soreness in the lower leg for several weeks when I got out of bed in the morning.

I started physical therapy the day after surgery. In that first appointment my extension was 0 degrees. My uninjured leg was a -3 degrees. I don’t remember what my flexion was but it was well past 90 degrees with assistance. The physical therapist was surprised by my range of motion. I don’t know why my range of motion was so good. I have been going to physical therapy twice a week.

In my 6 week follow up with the surgeon he was also surprised with my range of motion. I got the whole speech about the knee not being ready to start playing again. I think he was worried that my progress was going to make me do something stupid. The funny thing is I am considering retiring from pick up basketball.

Now using band assistance I can get my heel back to my glute. They are starting to work me towards some kind of running. They have had me on a hip sled for a few weeks. They have also had me doing lunges with 5 lb dumbbells. At home I use 10 lbs. I am also squating without weight. I am not quite hamstring to calf depth but I am getting there. I have also started pulling a light sled.

My advice would be to keep working on range of motion. Also bend and extend it as much as possible. I found that it helps improve the stiffness in the knee. Keep it elevated as much as you can. Try not to be on your feet for more than you have to.


#13

Okay, I don’t want to derail your log into a Marvel geek-fest, but one of my favorite one-off comic stories ever was a fight between Colossus and Juggernaut. It back in the 80’s when X-men was written/drawn by Chris Claremont/John Romita Jr (my hands-down favorite X-men era), right after the original secret wars. Colossus had just come back, and was a complete d-bag dumping Kitty Pride because he ‘fell in love’ with an alien chick who died in some of the worst writing in the secret wars.

Anyway, Wolverine took him out to get him drunk and kick some sense into him, but Colossus happened to bump into and get into a fight with civvie-clothes Cain Marko, who was just out looking to get laid. So, Wolverine just stood back and let Juggernaut kick the shit out of him! It was actually a pretty even-looking fight, until Cain dropped the remains of the bar on him. It was epic…


#14

Jblues: Thanks for stopping by again. We Jareds have to stick together, haha. I’m something of a nutcase when it comes to training, so I love to be an example of training what you can, when you can. My hope is that this log can motivate others in a similar situation, but maybe a little of my psychosis will spread too.

Bpeck: Really means a lot to me that you used one of your few posts since 2005 to comment on my log man. I appreciate everything you shared, and will hopefully follow a similar path (although I’m already behind the curve on getting my physical therapy going). I will take that advice to heart.

OTHSteve: I loved that comic! As a Punisher fan, the lack of fatalities was always something of a let down, but it was still an awesome brawl between two massive powerhouses. The backstory of Juggernaut having JUST gotten freed from being trapped in cement and just wanting to get a drink and laid was hilarious too. Made you kind of sympathetic to the villain.


Single leg squat (right leg)/Seated squat visualization and flex with left leg
5x10

Notes: Did the squats by standing on my wife’s plyo box (I think it’s 24") with my right leg and letting my left leg drape over the side. Can get pretty decent depth this way. For the latter movement, I sat on the bench, planted my left leg, visualized squatting and flexed my leg as hard as I could for reps. Willing to try anything.

Standing band leg curl/standing hamstring flex
4x10
1x16

Notes: Took a while to rig this up, but figured something out stealing parts from my blast straps. For the left leg, just squeezing the contraction as much as I can.

Seated band leg extension/quad flex
4x10
1x20

Blast strap fallouts
3x10

Neck harness
1x50

General notes: I actually had my right glute injury flare up yesterday, which compromised things a little bit, but this was more a workout to figure out what I could get away with. I found out I CAN do reverse hypers with the good side, but I also know that doing it with the glute injury is a bad idea. Might give it a try some other time. Gotta figure out a way to bring intensity to this workout in the future.


#15

I usually don’t post because I don’t have anything worth contributing.

For mobility my PT had we doing heel slide with strap assist.

For extension they had me put my heel on a foam roller and flex the quad to try to try to extend the leg more.

I started with a lot of leg lifts from all angles. Hamstring curls while laying on my front side. They also had me doing isometric extensions with the knee around 90 degrees.

Two things I remembered last night. First is my calf got really sore and tight after the surgery. I don’t know if the circulation was cut off by the brace or if it was a result of the swelling from the knee. It took a lot of stretching and calf raises to get rid of the soreness. Second is be careful with your hamstring when doing leg curls. The hamstring muscle will probably take the most work to get back. I was getting cramps from unweighted leg curls for a couple of weeks. Then I pulled it when they were testing the strength for my 6 week checkup. The doctor thinks it might have been scar tissue tearing. It took a couple of weeks for the soreness from the pull to go away. I am still taking it easy when they test my hamstring strength.


#16

Bpeck: That sounds about similar to what my surgeon gave me. Been doing tons of heal slides and knee extensions, just without any sort of assistance. Once I meet with the PT for real, I’m going to pester them to give me all the things I can possibly do to get moving on the right track. My biggest issue is to hold myself back from trying to self PT, as, knowing myself, I’ll push way too hard too fast and set back my recovery.

I noticed a little bit of calf soreness as well post surgery, but it thankfully went away. It was REAL bad after the initial injury. I’ll definitely make sure to watch out for the hamstring as well. I’ve been noticing little twinges here and there.


Captains of Crush grippers

#2
1x17
1x10
1x7

30 second hold

#1
1x35

Notes: Progress is really coming along on these. Forearms are blowing up quickly too. Really happy to have picked these back up after so long; gives me something new to focus on. I think once I can hit 20 reps with the 2, I’ll break out the 2.5 and see what I can do.

Woke up at 184.4 this morning. Just going to keep a concentrated effort to eat bit. Going to try out some seated pressing tonight.


#17

I don’t know if this is a taboo question, but is there anything you would have done differently to have limited/prevented the injury? Was it fatigue so the technique was off? Were you already at a point where something like this was basically “inevitable”, and it just happened to be then?

No problem if you don’t want to talk along those lines. Mostly just wondering what I/we can learn from this.

That said, I really like your outlook on all of this, since it really is just a temporary setback. Plus, gives a chance to focus on some other things for a bit.


#18

[quote]LoRez wrote:
I don’t know if this is a taboo question, but is there anything you would have done differently to have limited/prevented the injury? Was it fatigue so the technique was off? Were you already at a point where something like this was basically “inevitable”, and it just happened to be then?

No problem if you don’t want to talk along those lines. Mostly just wondering what I/we can learn from this.

That said, I really like your outlook on all of this, since it really is just a temporary setback. Plus, gives a chance to focus on some other things for a bit.[/quote]

Not taboo at all; I would love for this log to serve as a learning experience for others.

I have video of the injury, but don’t plan to upload it until after I am fully healed (and even then it’s a maybe). The community here is solid, but the internet is full of scumbags, and I know there would be at least one person that would want to delight in seeing me hurt, and it’s not something I need right at this second. That said, I will include a still of the injury when I get home so people know what it looked like.

I had to carry the yoke 30’. I dropped it like inches away from the finish line. This was what made things bad. Normally, when I pick up a heavy yoke, I plant my feet, get my shoulder blades nice and tight, breathe in deep, press slowly into the cross bar until there is no more “slack” in my body, and then stand up with it.

Since I was so close, I was a total idiot, and tried to just quickly pick up the yoke and shuffle it the few inches I needed to go. This meant that, instead of distributing the load through out my entire body, I was putting all of the force on my knees. Back was loose and slack, core had no air in it, the knee joint was the only thing that was “stable”, so it took ALL of the weight.

Now, there are some contributing factors at play here. Training for this contest, I had performed an 800lb yoke pick up with my yoke at home, so I got used to an even heavier weight. ADDITIONALLY, I think the weight at home may have been even more (never actually weighed my yoke, just took the creator’s word for the weight, but someone else I know with the same yoke said it was 40lbs heavier than I thought). The end result was that the comp yoke felt LIGHT. I was shocked at how easy it was to pick up. This meant I wasn’t respecting the weight. 775lbs may have felt light, but it was STILL 775lbs.

That in turn is endemic of my own issue of buying my own hype. Prior to the contest, I had a real bad glute injury which prevented me from walking without assistance, and over the span of the week, I rehabbed myself back to normal. I had been training hard for months and doing real well in strongman, and I just started believing I was indestructible. It’s cool to think it, but at some point you gotta face reality.

My wife said something to me that really crushed me to hear, but also pointed out how bad this had gotten: “The yoke finally proved to me that you actually ARE human.” She had been watching me deadlift cars and pull semis and flip 700lb tires and all sorts of other crazy things and didn’t think I had any limits either. I’m still going to strive for greatness, but I’m also going to respect the challenges.

AND on top of all that, it dawns on me that I’ve been having some trauma in that knee for a while now. I’d experience moments where it would lock up or feel like it was going to slip out of place after a hard training session. I usually just blew it off as a sign of poor mobility, but in retrospect, it was hurting. This gives me a little solace in that the ACL blowing out was a more a question of when versus if, and I was happy I at least did it in a competition versus in training.

Phew, long response, haha. I’ve had a lot of time to think about this though. And yeah, in the long run, this is nothing to get upset about. I’ve seen people lose legs, get cancer, pass away, etc etc, and the biggest issue I have is that I can’t train 100% the way I would like to train to pursue a hobby I have. I try to keep the big picture whenever possible, and know that time heals all wounds.


#19

So there is the photo of the injury. It doesn’t look too gruesome, but if you look at the direction my left foot is pointed and compare it to the direction my left knee is bending, you understand what happened. You can also see how my hips are way behind me, my upper back is rounded forward, the whole thing is a mess.


Seated axle press
bar x 10
75x10
115x5
165x8
115x12

Notes: Once again, no reference for 1rm, so just picked a reasonable weight and will calculate from there. Right rotator cuff was a little pissed off from this, something to watch for. I’m suspending the axle from chains at the bottom of the movement to make it easier to get under.

Dips
4x20
1x40

Notes: Amazing the difference the forward lean makes on these.

Axle curls
1x100

Notes: Found a way to lean slightly against my bench so that I can standing while performing these without putting any weight on my left leg. Really happy about that, because these are awesome to have in the program.

Seated light band pushdowns
2x50

Band pull aparts
1x100

Wide grip cable rows 90lbs
14x10
1x15

Notes: Performed these in between sets of everything else, with the set of 15 at the end. For those just joining me, my cable station is some old school Weider home gym plate loadable thing, so it doesn’t take much weight to really get it to get heavy. My time spent bodybuilding seemed to pay off, because I really felt this in my mid back.

General notes: Got to take the last bit of tape off my left leg today. I can officially shower without taping a bag to my stitches. It’s the little things really.


#20

Couple of random thoughts

-Woke up at 184.6. Seems to be about my baseline right now.

-Both of my legs are sore, so the lower body training at least had some degree of intensity to it.

-I need to account for the fact that I am burning more calories moving around these days since I am crutching everywhere. Getting to and from my car in the parking lot at work is a workout.

-Still battling with my insurance provider for PT. Just a lot of red tape.