The Three Ways Hip Surgery Has Changed My Approach To Fitness

The other day I decided since it’s March and March is technically spring that it can’t be cold anymore.  So I packed away all of my winter clothes just to make it really official.  Unfortunately the weather didn’t get the memo and last night, as it snowed, I found myself buried under two blankets, wearing knee-high socks, and surrounded by a pillow fort that I built, because I’m five.   I was also pretty much dressed like this:

Rosey Rebecca snow

Except imagine me with short hair and inside on the couch surrounded by a pillow fort.  I would have taken a  picture but I was too cold. So instead you get this glorious picture of me from six years ago. You’re welcome.

This is the exact opposite of how I felt Thursday morning at spin class, where I was dripping in sweat, with my hair tied back with a headband because I forgot a hair tie (don’t do that).  If you follow me on Twitter you might have seen this tweet:

Luckily I was in the back row and no one had to see my butt.

Speaking of spinning, I promised a post about my workouts lately and how they differ now that I’ve had hip surgery.  So enough talking about how I mooned everyone in spin class and let’s get to it, shall we?  (But first, if you haven’t seen this Flash Mob Spin Class Wedding Proposal, you need to get on that ASAP)

The Chocolate Moose, Greenville, SC

I’ve learned a lot about my body since it first started acting up in March  2014.  Up until then, I’d had my fair share of sports injuries but nothing compared to what I went through with my hip. I’ve been pretty active since I started my blog in 2009 and I’ve tried a lot of workouts: spinning, body pump, yoga, pilates, road biking, running, crossfit.  So I was beside myself when the right side of my body just stopped working all of the sudden.  What made it worse was that the doctors couldn’t figure out what was wrong with me for so long.  Working out is my outlet, my stress relief.  I’ve always struggled with anxiety and not being able to work out and not knowing how to fix it was really hard on me.

On top of that, the weight that I had worked so hard to lose when I started this blog in 2009 had crept back on and I felt like I couldn’t control it at all.  By the time my doctor realized I needed hip surgery it had been seven months and I could barely walk, let alone work out.  I was really mad at my body. I felt betrayed by it  and as though I was being punished.  I thought it was unfair that I was stuck in my predicament despite the fact that I tried to do all the right things to take care of my body. Even though these weren’t rational thoughts, it’s how I felt and I couldn’t control it.

Physical therapy after surgery was very humbling.  Three times a week for three months I learned how to use my lower body again. I felt my hip get stronger with every session. I felt almost back to normal.  I celebrated tiny accomplishments like I’d completed a marathon.  Fitness goals for me then were SO different from what they were before I injured my hip.  All I wanted was to feel normal again, like my body wasn’t working against me.   So a year out from surgery, the way I think about workouts is very different.  My main goals now are to lose the weight again, but also to prevent hurting my hip again (and other injuries) and to feel strong enough to do normal, everyday things, like bending down to pick up a box or walking for even half a mile.

There are three very important ways in which I work toward these goals and I want to share them with you because I feel like they’re helpful even if you haven’t had hip surgery.

The Three Ways Hip Surgery Has Changed My Approach To Fitness- roseyrebecca.com

I LISTEN TO MY BODY AND UNDERSTAND ITS LIMITS

If I didn’t understand this before, I definitely do now.  My body is much more sensitive post-surgery; It speaks to me and lets me know when I’m pushing too hard or if its had enough. I struggled a lot with this before I hurt my hip.  Part of this is accepting that there are some things my body just isn’t ready for or straight up can’t do anymore.  For example, my hip completely rebelled last month when I was doing BodyPump a few times a week, so I stopped going.  As much as I love BodyPump, my body just isn’t there yet. I’ve also accepted that there are some yoga poses my hip just doesn’t like anymore. Spinning is OK for me because I can control the resistance on the bike and take breaks when I need them.  Jillian Michael’s 30 Day Shred is OK some days and not others.  My hip LIVES for rest days. and, as a whole, my body ALWAYS feels better when I listen to it.  Listening to my body has made not care as much about what other people are doing in the gym. I know what is working for my  body and that’s all that matters.

I ASK FOR HELP WHEN I NEED IT

Part of the reason I love group fitness classes so much is that most of the time I have no idea what I’m doing.  I absolutely adore my yoga and spin instructors at Gold’s Gym. They all know about my hip surgery (my spin instructor has even had both of her hips replaced) and they are so open to helping me find modifications and making sure I am doing things correctly. As I said above, a key part of healing for me is knowing when to stop if something doesn’t feel right and all of my instructors are so in tune to this. It really makes me feel supported and like I’m taking extra care of my body.  Just the other day I mentioned to my yoga instructor that my hip had been acting up during one of the poses. She not only took the time after class to show me modifications but also referred me to a physical therapist  that specializes in therapeutic yoga. Now I have an appointment with her and one more person on my team to support me. You will never regret reaching out and asking for a support system when you’re having a tough time with something- this goes for anything in life- not just fitness.

I AM MORE PATIENT AND GRATEFUL FOR WHAT MY BODY DOES FOR ME

This might be the biggest part of how my approach to fitness has changed since hip surgery. I am not a patient person and I get discouraged pretty easily, especially when it comes to fitness gains.  I am very much an all or nothing type of person. But when trying to snap back from such a huge setback, I’ve learned that time and patience is the only thing that will really help me heal. It took me THREE months post surgery to be able to walk a mile without pain. Instead of getting frustrated I focused on being thankful that my body was working with me, not against me. I am grateful for each day I wake up and my hip doesn’t hurt, that I can hike a mile or more, that I can take a spinning class with no pain.  It’s really true that you don’t know what you have until it’s gone and for me, it took a major injury and surgery to appreciate my body. I’m not mad at it anymore for breaking. If anything, I am so grateful for the lessons its taught me throughout this whole process.  As I mentioned above, I celebrate tiny victories. Three squats is better than no squats and I know with time and patience my body will reward me with strength and perseverance.

Robert Frost Quote

So there you have it. The three ways my approach to fitness has changed since hip surgery. I think that what I’ve talked about can apply to anyone in any fitness situation. Of course I am not a doctor or a personal trainer. This post is about my experience and what has worked for me. I sincerely hope that is has helped or inspired you in some way.

Your Turn: What fitness mantras do you like to follow? Do you listen to your body? How has your approach to fitness changed over the years?

Have a great weekend! <3

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Roasted Cauliflower and Brussels Sprouts Pasta

Hiya!

How’s your Friday going so far? Mine started off with a couple texts from my mom.

Mom: Feeling better?

Me: Yeah- just stuffy and it sounds like there are rice krispies in my ears.

Mom: Are they organic?

Totally normal conversation. Also, you guys know what I mean when I say it sounds like there are rice krispies in my ears, right? Or am I insane?

Anyway, thanks to lots of tea and rest, I’m finally feeling a bit better.

tea and honey

At the beginning of the week I went grocery shopping and bought a head of cauliflower and a pound of brussels sprouts with grand plans to make delicious recipes like these Crispy Sriracha-Lime Cauliflower Tacos and every brussels sprouts recipe ever pinned on Pinterest.

But then I got sick and the cauliflower and brussels sprouts just sat at the bottom of the fridge while I devoured nothing but soup and tea for two days.

Last night, because I was feeling a bit better and because I had the sudden urge to make my whole apartment reek of cruciferous vegetables, I decided that roasting my neglected groceries was the way to go.

Roasted Cauliflower and Brussels Sprouts Pasta

Obviously.

But seriously, if you decide to make this recipe, open some windows or light a candle or something because boy, is it smelly! Delicious! But smelly.

I could have eaten this whole pan by itself.

Roasted Cauliflower and Brussels Sprouts Pasta

But instead, I grabbed some whole wheat rigatoni from my pantry, added some olive oil, shredded parmesan and asiago cheese and went to town.

Roasted Cauliflower and Brussels Sprouts Pasta

Guys, I’m not even exaggerating, this is one of the best pasta dishes I’ve had in a long time! And it was so, so easy!

Roasted Cauliflower and Brussels Sprouts Pasta

All you need to do is preheat your oven to 400 degrees F and get to work chopping your veggies. And when I say chopping, I mean flinging cauliflower all over your kitchen.

Roasted Cauliflower and Brussels Sprouts Pasta

After you’ve chopped your cauliflower and brussels sprouts and minced your garlic, throw everything in a bowl with a couple tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil and some salt and pepper. Mix well and then transfer to a baking sheet. Pop that baby in the oven for 30-35 minutes, depending on how crispy you like your veggies.

Side Note:  One time my mom and I were eating at an Italian café and mentioned to the waiter that we really liked the olive oil and asked what kind it was. His response: “Extra!” I kid you not. We almost died laughing after he walked away.

Moving on…

Roasted Cauliflower and Brussels Sprouts Pasta

While your veggies are roasting, prepare your pasta according to the package directions. When it’s done, drain and toss with some EXTRA virgin olive oil. Toss in the roasted veggies when they’re done and top with shredded parmesan and asiago cheese.  And tada! A delicious, easy dinner is served!

Roasted Cauliflower and Brussels Sprouts Pasta

You could easily do this with gluten free pasta or rice if pasta isn’t your thing. You can also leave out the cheese if you’re vegan. It’s just as delicious!

I really loved this dish and I hope you will too!

Roasted Cauliflower and Brussels Sprouts Pasta

Serves 4-6

Prep time: 5- 10 minutes

Cook time: 30-35 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 small head of cauliflower, stemmed and chopped into florets
  • 1 lb Brussels Sprouts, stemmed and halved
  • 4 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 4 TBSPs Extra Virgin Olive Oil, divided
  • Salt and Pepper, to taste
  • 1 lb Whole Wheat Rigatoni, or other tube-like pasta.
  • Shredded Parmesan and Asiago Cheeses, for topping (optional)

Directions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F and start chopping your veggies.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, toss the cauliflower, brussels sprouts and garlic with around 2 TBSPs of olive oil and salt and pepper, to taste.
  3. Spread the mixture onto a baking sheet and roast in the oven for 30-35 minutes. (I like my veggies extra crispy so I did 35 minutes)
  4. While the veggies are roasting, cook your pasta according to the package directions. Drain and toss with the remaining two TBSPs of olive oil.
  5. Divide the pasta into bowls and top with the roasted veggies and shredded parmesan and asiago cheese (if you want).
  6. Enjoy!

Hope you guys have a great weekend! <3

I’m linking up with Deborah and Sarah for Meatless Monday!

Meatless Monday

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