My Decision Has Been Made For Me

I said I would take the weekend to decide how to proceed after getting my diagnosis about my hip and leg. First, I will lay out what the final outcome is when I met with my orthopedic specialist on Thursday.

He basically backed up the original diagnosis that I received from my client's father last Monday. I have partial ruptures of the gluteus medius and maximus and because it is not a complete rupture (of which I was happy about), I will not need endoscopy surgery to repair and reattach either muscle. I guess that's a positive in all of this.  The hematoma in my quad is not much of an issue because it is decreasing in size and the quad pain has subsided, considerably, within the last week of not training legs (more like 2 weeks but the pain was still there for a week before dissipating this last week).  If the pain was a  9 on a scale of 1-10, two weeks ago, it is less than a 1 at this point. Again, this was promising and had me starting to believe that I could still push to Masters Nationals as the last big dance of the year for me in the masters 50 division.

I ANTICIPATE that my quad will be good to go in as early as a week or two. It's the hip that is the issue for recovery.

My hip has improved but not at the rate of the quad, of course. I know this seems obvious due to my hip having 2 partial ruptures, but I would be lying if I said that I wasn't hoping for more improvement than has happened so far. I'm impatient, but more importantly I still can't believe that this happened after such an incredibly successful prep phase. I mean, shit, if shows weren't cancelled and pushed to later dates due to covid, the injury happened July 3rd (I was in the ER that night), only 1 week before what would have been the Southern States and then another 2 weeks to Masters Nationals and I would have been done. Yes, the injury may well still have happened, but I would have had the option of competing with a bad hip and not have had to not train legs for weeks on end. I think I could have still held size quite well for a couple of weeks of not training legs and still been able to be on stage with great condition and present a package I was proud of.

Here is where I am now:

I really believed that if I could recover from this hip issue enough by not training for another 4 weeks, I could train legs the last 6 weeks before masters nationals and likely have been able to pull off still competing at one of the two big shows that I targeted for the last 2 years. Coming into this weekend, I see now that this is not just a long shot, but incredibly unlikely.

Even if everything worked out and the hip allowed me to train legs hard for the last 6 weeks before masters nationals, it is very unlikely that this show will even take place. Restrictions on the number of people who can gather in a crowd in Pennsylvania right now has been restricted last week to only 25 people, due to covid numbers being on the rise. With 10 weeks still to go to the show date, yes, that restriction COULD be lifted at some point before the show, but it would be lifted and go back to a maximum of 250 people who could gather in a crowd. We all know that Masters nationals in conjunction with collegiate and teen nationals, would draw at least 1000 competitors, alone, even if it was an off year. So, even without a crowd to sit in the seats, the competitor numbers would make it impossible to have the show. 

This means if I were to gamble with the hip and have no issues training, I would likely be doing it all for naught, as the governor's restrictions would not allow the show to happen.

Though I am devastated and came into the weekend thinking I would do everything I could to get to this show, it just isn't logical. One of the things I have done over the last couple of years is I have learned to be smarter and not drive myself to the point of causing issues for myself that have sidetracked prep phases in the last couple of years. I have successfully done this and this is a large part of the reason that I have made so much progress and have been able to get into condition with much less effort than in the past. I mean, not doing cardio has been a game changer for me, and I haven't been in an overtrained state at all for this entire prep phase. To go and push myself to the point of potentially making the injuries worse (possibly total ruptures) for a show that is unlikely to happen is just not being smart. There are a few other variables that have come to light in the last couple of days that I would rather not get into that are playing into it, as well. 

I am in a different place this year, and over the last couple of years, where I have been back to enjoying my training and the process of changing my physique for the better. Where it used to be a chore, the process has been incredibly enjoyable again for the first time in years. It is really hard to admit that this decision is the best move and to wait for the 2021 season to get on stage again.  However, I know this is the best decision given the circumstances.

I didn't do anything "wrong" or make a bad decision that cost me this injury. It was more like a "perfect storm" for everything to come together to have caused this situation. I am certain that I will get a few people who will chide me for not being able to finish this prep, but that's just something I accept and will have to deal with. I pushed through when covid shut down all of the gyms and was still training at 2am in Miami through the entire shutdown. I had not missed a meal or a training session until this happened with my hip, and I STILL trained and tried to push through not just with training legs, but even when the meds were making me sick and lethargic. I just cannot "push through" this obstacle without risking extreme injury for a show that will probably not be able to take place.

There is nothing I want more than to be on stage, and I was excited coming into this weekend thinking I would be able to push through, after all. With everything going on, though, this just isn't the best move. I have other things that are out of my control that I also have to deal with in the coming months, and 2021 will have most of us in a better position in our personal lives, as well -- including me. The issues I have dealt with haven't been a reason to not prep, but they have certainly been obstacles that will likely be resolved by the start of 2021, anyway, allowing me an even clearer focus on what I want to accomplish. We all deal with shit, so my situation isn't any different for that, but it is still worth noting.

The plan moving forward is to keep condition pretty tight and try to make improvements in my legs (they still need more size due to not being able to train them very hard for almost 5 years while dealing with back injuries), and just refining my physique to continue to try bringing up weak points. Basically, just doing what all of us are doing as we all try to improve and put our best package on stage. 

I know I am running out of time in that I am clear I have far more healthy days behind me than in front of me to improve my physique. Still, I will put that aside and continue to train and progress as if I am not in my 50s. It has worked well for me the last 2.5 years and I feel that I can still continue to improve. How long I can do this is the only question, but I will continue until I just cannot do it, anymore. #teamDNR

Pardon me while I go eat a cookie or two.

 

 

 

 

 

The recovery time is questionable and differs for everyone.

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