Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Pre-Surgery Musings

Before I begin with this short little post, I want to remind you all to (if you haven't already) check out my previous entry. It was a more-than-appropriate "final" event before my upcoming competitive hiatus - a sort of peak before I plateau for a bit.

In a few hours, I'll check-in to have surgery to have a deviated septum and some mangled bones and cartilage in my nose fixed. As I've noted here before, I've been virtually unable to breathe through my nose for a few months. (And before that, I was getting sinus infections way too often, and before that my nose would bleed when someone blew in my general direction from down the block - point being, who knows how long this has been getting more and more messed up.) With a slight lull in the upcoming bout schedule, no airplane flights scheduled for over a month and the holidays behind me, I figured now was as good of a time as any to get it fixed.

Recovery time seems to vary. I'm supposed to go 2 weeks (I'm going to use business weeks) without "working out," including not lifting anything over 25 lbs. or bending over at the waist. I'm supposed to stay out of the cold, dry air as much as possible too.

I foresee two "problems." First, no one is saying "absolutely do nothing physical." They're saying "you'll risk a nosebleed" or "well, if you're going to run, I'd recommend you do it inside." I'm all about doing this the right way and healing without any complications, but at the same time, well, I'm a workout-aholic. I think everything will be more clear based on how I'm feeling early next week - then I'll decide whether I want to start small on the exercise bike or with 5 lb. dumbbells or something to keep my heart rate and blood pressure low (and most importantly, my aching nose happy.) But no matter what, I need to make sure I absolutely don't do too much too soon and have any setbacks.

The other problem is that this is resulting in an indefinite absence from the competitive side of boxing. I'm by no means hanging up my gloves - it's only 2 weeks before I'll be starting to work back up to full speed again. The problem is that it will likely be, well, who knows how long before I feel comfortable enough to put the headgear on and step back into the ring. Even though I'm going to order one of those models of headgear that have the bar across your nose/mouth that the pros use when sparring in training camp, I don't ever want to have to battle a mental block fearing that my nose could again gradually be getting messed up over time. Besides, you can't do anything extra to truly protect your face in a sanctioned bout.

The bottom line: I am not finished boxing - not even this month. But I do not want to (and God willing will not have to) have surgery again.

I had considered drafting some prose here that outlined all the things I'll miss about the ring. But then I realized that not only is that a bit melodramatic and even cliche...but unnecessary. I'm not going anywhere. I'll be back, and perhaps much sooner rather than later.

The road to recovery starts tomorrow. And in the context of all the other challenges I've had to overcome during my amateur boxing career, this road doesn't seem so bad.

Keep swingin'. Talk to y'all in a few days.


Paul Kelly said...

Good luck with the surgery and recovery, man. You'll be back in the gym and ring before you know it.

Nerd Of Steel's Boxing Tips said...

As I get older I'm learning how to avoid the all or nothing approach to training. One can just go to the gym and do less frequent casual workouts.

That kind of training can be very rewarding but in completely different ways. I find it easier to make major changes to my game, almost a "rebuilding." Or to work on different styles of boxing, or skills I didn't necessarily use with my previous style.

This kind of schedule gives me the time to figure out what I'm going to do while still adding skills. Although now I'm finding it hard to switch from laid back to hard training...

Steve Imparl said...

Hey Jonathan,

I hope your surgery went well and your recovery from it is going even better. May you be back in the gym and back in the ring when the time is right to return.

Stay strong and you'll be back in action soon. Remember, you need that nose for the rest of your life, so give it the time it deserves to heal properly and completely!

M said...

Hope the recovery is coming along nicely. A headgear with a nose-bar is the way forward!

Enjoy the downtime and recharge.