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Old 02-17-22, 12:32 PM  
bfit
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
How long to lose fitness from no exercise?

I haven't been able to exercise for 2 1/2 weeks. I had a bad reaction to a shingles shot that exacerbated a skin condition which is very painful. Most of the irritation is on my rear end so I can't sit or walk without discomfort. At this point it looks like there is no end in sight. I am getting increasingly anxious about missing workouts. Every day goes by, and I think "maybe tomorrow", and then it's just not possible. How long can someone go without exercise until they are totally unfit? I have not missed over two weeks of exercise in literally 40 years, and it's taking a mental toll on me too.
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Old 02-17-22, 02:03 PM  
Terry
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Texas
Cardio fitness levels drop faster than strength per my experience.

IMO, the most important thing is this: Be ready to re-start HAPPILY at whatever level you are at once this issue is resolved. Don’t play the game of “I used to be able to”. Instead, play the game of “How fun to do a re-start at a lower level. I haven’t done these kind of workouts in a lot of years.” Also, maybe you have a friend who needs to start working out, will be at or below your level, and can use the motivation you bring to the table if you work out with him/her.

In the meantime, maybe you can try some new healthy recipes, focus on healthy meal planning, cut Calories a tiny bit if you have any fat you’d like to lose, do workout video reviews, etc.
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Old 02-17-22, 03:19 PM  
Erica H.
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Quote:
Originally Posted by bfit View Post
. I had a bad reaction to a shingles shot that exacerbated a skin condition which is very painful. Most of the irritation is on my rear end so I can't sit or walk without discomfort. At this point it looks like there is no end in sight. I am getting increasingly anxious about missing workouts. Every day goes by, and I think "maybe tomorrow", and then it's just not possible. How long can someone go without exercise until they are totally unfit? I have not missed over two weeks of exercise in literally 40 years, and it's taking a mental toll on me too.
First, big hugs to you. I'm so sorry about the bad reaction and the pain you are going through!

Unfortunately, I've had to go through many long periods of time when I couldn't exercise due to injury or illness. In fact, right now I am ten weeks post-op from reconstructive foot surgery and six weeks since I got a concussion. The first 7 weeks after my surgery, I was 100% non weight bearing and couldn't even take one step and had to ice/elevate all the time. I'm in a walking boot now. It's extremely tough mentally to be forced to give up our workouts and lose our hard-earned fitness.

The muscles in my operated leg are completely atrophied now due to not being used. I showed my DH the difference in my calf muscles between my good leg and my bad one and he blurted out, "that's cool!" when he felt my one calf muscle that disappeared and I burst into tears.

Even with all of my previous injuries and surgeries, I was able to do *something* for exercise but not this time. It's been very difficult and depressing. but I know I've been through this before and am always surprised and pleased at how quickly my fitness levels return. Muscle memory is a real thing! And it is really satisfying to see the quick progress when it happens.

Hang in there and take care of yourself now. Your workouts will be ready for you when you are able to get to them. Two and a half weeks is a very short time and I'm sure you're fine now but try not to get too discouraged if it's much longer. I need to tell myself the same thing because I get very depressed.

I hope you feel better soon.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Terry View Post
Instead, play the game of “How fun to do a re-start at a lower level. I haven’t done these kind of workouts in a lot of years.”
What I find fun after a long time of forced rest is to see how quickly my fitness level returns. It's really amazing. When we're already fit, the gains are so slow and we plateau frequently but it feels like the gains are huge and fast when coming back after time off. it is definitely humbling when first coming back though when you've lost so much strength and endurance.

Erica
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Old 02-17-22, 03:47 PM  
prettyinpink
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
I’ve heard that studies show a couple of weeks before strength begins to decline. But it can be faster to build it back up then it was to build it the first time. The muscles “remember”.
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Old 02-17-22, 03:58 PM  
Scorpio6
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: St. Louis MO
Erica

I think your DH response to your atrophied calf muscle is that men don't like obvious muscles on women. He probably thought the smaller size was more attractive.
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Old 02-17-22, 04:06 PM  
Erica H.
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
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Originally Posted by Scorpio6 View Post
I think your DH response to your atrophied calf muscle is that men don't like obvious muscles on women. He probably thought the smaller size was more attractive.
Oh no, that wasn't it at all. He just couldn't believe the difference between the two calf muscles - it was a significant difference that he didn't expect. And I don't think anyone would find a shriveled up lower leg attractive - the muscle isn't a "smaller size" but actually gone.

Erica
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Old 02-17-22, 05:45 PM  
JackieB
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Join Date: May 2005
Location: Minnesota
Quote:
Originally Posted by bfit View Post
I haven't been able to exercise for 2 1/2 weeks. I had a bad reaction to a shingles shot that exacerbated a skin condition which is very painful. Most of the irritation is on my rear end so I can't sit or walk without discomfort. At this point it looks like there is no end in sight. I am getting increasingly anxious about missing workouts. Every day goes by, and I think "maybe tomorrow", and then it's just not possible. How long can someone go without exercise until they are totally unfit? I have not missed over two weeks of exercise in literally 40 years, and it's taking a mental toll on me too.
I'm so sorry you're dealing with this.
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Old 02-17-22, 10:58 PM  
ChelePA
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Quote:
Originally Posted by Erica H. View Post
Oh no, that wasn't it at all. He just couldn't believe the difference between the two calf muscles - it was a significant difference that he didn't expect. And I don't think anyone would find a shriveled up lower leg attractive - the muscle isn't a "smaller size" but actually gone.

Erica
I completely relate to what you are saying. I didn’t start moving or walking after my accident for almost 5 months. My leg muscles especially in my injured leg were completely atrophied. Core muscles as well. It was difficult for me to look at my leg and see how much it changed in appearance. I was probably in the best shape of my life before this happened. My muscles are still recovering. It’s been about four months since I was given the all clear and I have a long road ahead of me. Hoping you bounce back quickly!
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Old 02-17-22, 11:15 PM  
prettyinpink
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by Terry View Post

IMO, the most important thing is this: Be ready to re-start HAPPILY at whatever level you are at once this issue is resolved. Don’t play the game of “I used to be able to”. Instead, play the game of “How fun to do a re-start at a lower level. I haven’t done these kind of workouts in a lot of years.” .
What good advice!

2lazyforthegym has blogged about having to build back up after going through some medical things.
https://2lazy4gym.com/about/
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Old 02-18-22, 04:10 AM  
Erica H.
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChelePA View Post
I completely relate to what you are saying. I didn’t start moving or walking after my accident for almost 5 months. My leg muscles especially in my injured leg were completely atrophied. Core muscles as well. It was difficult for me to look at my leg and see how much it changed in appearance. I was probably in the best shape of my life before this happened. My muscles are still recovering. It’s been about four months since I was given the all clear and I have a long road ahead of me. Hoping you bounce back quickly!
Thank you. I think of you often since you've been through so much more than I have.


Quote:
Originally Posted by prettyinpink View Post
What good advice!

2lazyforthegym has blogged about having to build back up after going through some medical things.
https://2lazy4gym.com/about/
Thank you! She's been through a lot, too.

Erica
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