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Today Was A Wonderful Day :-)

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davebugg

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2017)
Camino Frances (2018)
Camino Ingles (2019)
Today was a great day. :) A totally great day!!!!

Today I was finally able to complete my regular training hike circuit. This circuit is 6.8 miles (11 kms) long, and gains 2300 feet (701) meters within the first 2 miles. The trail/path goes up and then back into the Cascade Foothills, and then back down to the parking area. I had put a video on YouTube via John Sikora which shows an abbreviated version of that regular training hike circuit.

My time was still 26 minutes longer than before, but it just felt extraordinary to walk that trail once again. My knees and ankles are back into shape and handled all that downhill grade brilliantly. Then again, they’ve been working at it for a while now.

I’ve got to say I really had doubts that I would ever get back to this point, much less to pre-illness fitness levels. Now, I am thinking that my body will be able to fully recover :)

The following bit was written to help me recall the chain of events, and to put into perspective, why today is such a big deal for me. I wanted to share the big positive improvement of today. Reading the summary below is optional :)

********************************************************************************************************************

For a 9-month period during 2018 (which included the time on my 2nd Camino last September and October) severely problematic hydroceles had been developing. The prevailing theory as to ‘why’ this began, was that it was a side effect from inguinal hernia repair surgery performed in the fall of 2017.

After arriving home last October from the Camino, symptoms became more severe. In December, severe pain and a high fever set in, along with other signs of systemic infection. My consulting physician referred me immediately from his office to the hospital’s emergency room in order to be immediately admitted and have various diagnostic imaging performed.

That night, December 07, 2018, the first surgery was performed. Fournier’s Gangrene was diagnosed after lab testing of debrided tissues also revealed a variety of nasty bacterial bugs. Heavy-duty I.V. antibiotics were keep flowing for the next 6 days.

December 8. I was again taken to surgery in order to have a more complete exploration and more infected tissue debridement. The hydroceles were repaired at that time. I was so out of it during this whole time I barely was cognizant of much of anything. . .which was probably a blessing. :)

December 9. I was taken for a third surgery to determine why fever and other symptoms were not subsiding significantly. Another area of infection was discovered, and significant tissue debridement was done. A revision of the cystocele repair was also done on one side. Infection control specialists were consulted from several medical centers over real time video conferencing. I remember thinking what a lousy television program it was. A Hospitalist (yes, that is a specialty) was brought in to deal with all care regarding the systemic infections.

December 10. Another surgery was performed in the early AM. The surgical nurses and I are apparently on a first name basis; although I was fuzzy about just who is who. I do remember that one nurse had spectacularly gorgeous eyes, which is all that I could really see with the surgical masks and garb on.

This time as I was waking up in the recovery room, just barely regaining consciousness, my recovery bed was being rapidly pushed back into an operating room. Apparently, I was hemorrhaging quite severely, and the surgeon needed to quickly find and plug the leak.

All I remember was not really caring or being cognizant of what was going on around me.

When I woke up again, I was back in my hospital room with two bags of blood dangling on one I.V pole; a second, I.V pole was dangling a couple of other bags of clear fluids, which included my I.V. antibiotics. I had I.V tubing inserted in both arms, and an oxygen mask covering my nose and mouth.

I was too fuzzy headed to care much about anything at that time. I do remember being asked Soooo Many Questions by a lot of people. . . or what seemed like a lot of people. I also remember feeling incredibly irritable, even angry, for no real reason.

December 11. Significant progress has occurred with resolving the infections. My body temperature is almost at normal levels. My oxygenation levels have stabilized and are back to normal. Now the primary concern is the surgical recovery with all the dressings and packings and stuff.

December 12. I.V. antibiotics are discontinued in favor of oral antibiotics. All I.V.s are now gone, and my arms are free of tubing. I am still having blood drawn for testing twice a day, though. My arms are full of needle tracks and bruises.

December 13 to 16. Recovery progress continues until the hospital discharge. Various tightly wound dressings are discontinued, and I can do some walking down the hallway if I have a wheeled walker with me. I feel horrendous, but a normal horrendous.

I noticed an elderly gentleman in a room a few doors down. I never saw visitors, and an Aide confirmed he had no family. I would spend some time sitting with him. We chatted when he was alert enough. He had suffered a broken pelvis from a fall at the Senior Facility he lived and was in bad shape. Al passed away before I was discharged.

December 17. Discharged. I still felt like a wall fell on me, but I was happy to be able to deal with the aches and pains from my own recliner, which also served as my bed for a while :) At this point, I don’t think I realized just how badly my body was traumatized. Nor how far removed from my normal fitness levels I was. Nor how much of a challenge it was going to be to get back to ‘normal’.

I think back to the middle of December until today, and I am grateful for today’s small victory. It is a Blessing. My wife, Jill, has reminded me that I still do not understand how close to passing away I was on 2 occasions during the hospitalization and surgeries, so that I need to keep expectations in perspective :)
 

Caligal

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF April 4- May 12, 2018
CP April 2019
Today was a great day. :) A totally great day!!!!

Today I was finally able to complete my regular training hike circuit. This circuit is 6.8 miles (11 kms) long, and gains 2300 feet (701) meters within the first 2 miles. The trail/path goes up and then back into the Cascade Foothills, and then back down to the parking area. I had put a video on YouTube via John Sikora which shows an abbreviated version of that regular training hike circuit.

My time was still 26 minutes longer than before, but it just felt extraordinary to walk that trail once again. My knees and ankles are back into shape and handled all that downhill grade brilliantly. Then again, they’ve been working at it for a while now.

I’ve got to say I really had doubts that I would ever get back to this point, much less to pre-illness fitness levels. Now, I am thinking that my body will be able to fully recover :)

The following bit was written to help me recall the chain of events, and to put into perspective, why today is such a big deal for me. I wanted to share the big positive improvement of today. Reading the summary below is optional :)

********************************************************************************************************************

For a 9-month period during 2018 (which included the time on my 2nd Camino last September and October) severely problematic hydroceles had been developing. The prevailing theory as to ‘why’ this began, was that it was a side effect from inguinal hernia repair surgery performed in the fall of 2017.

After arriving home last October from the Camino, symptoms became more severe. In December, severe pain and a high fever set in, along with other signs of systemic infection. My consulting physician referred me immediately from his office to the hospital’s emergency room in order to be immediately admitted and have various diagnostic imaging performed.

That night, December 07, 2018, the first surgery was performed. Fournier’s Gangrene was diagnosed after lab testing of debrided tissues also revealed a variety of nasty bacterial bugs. Heavy-duty I.V. antibiotics were keep flowing for the next 6 days.

December 8. I was again taken to surgery in order to have a more complete exploration and more infected tissue debridement. The hydroceles were repaired at that time. I was so out of it during this whole time I barely was cognizant of much of anything. . .which was probably a blessing. :)

December 9. I was taken for a third surgery to determine why fever and other symptoms were not subsiding significantly. Another area of infection was discovered, and significant tissue debridement was done. A revision of the cystocele repair was also done on one side. Infection control specialists were consulted from several medical centers over real time video conferencing. I remember thinking what a lousy television program it was. A Hospitalist (yes, that is a specialty) was brought in to deal with all care regarding the systemic infections.

December 10. Another surgery was performed in the early AM. The surgical nurses and I are apparently on a first name basis; although I was fuzzy about just who is who. I do remember that one nurse had spectacularly gorgeous eyes, which is all that I could really see with the surgical masks and garb on.

This time as I was waking up in the recovery room, just barely regaining consciousness, my recovery bed was being rapidly pushed back into an operating room. Apparently, I was hemorrhaging quite severely, and the surgeon needed to quickly find and plug the leak.

All I remember was not really caring or being cognizant of what was going on around me.

When I woke up again, I was back in my hospital room with two bags of blood dangling on one I.V pole; a second, I.V pole was dangling a couple of other bags of clear fluids, which included my I.V. antibiotics. I had I.V tubing inserted in both arms, and an oxygen mask covering my nose and mouth.

I was too fuzzy headed to care much about anything at that time. I do remember being asked Soooo Many Questions by a lot of people. . . or what seemed like a lot of people. I also remember feeling incredibly irritable, even angry, for no real reason.

December 11. Significant progress has occurred with resolving the infections. My body temperature is almost at normal levels. My oxygenation levels have stabilized and are back to normal. Now the primary concern is the surgical recovery with all the dressings and packings and stuff.

December 12. I.V. antibiotics are discontinued in favor of oral antibiotics. All I.V.s are now gone, and my arms are free of tubing. I am still having blood drawn for testing twice a day, though. My arms are full of needle tracks and bruises.

December 13 to 16. Recovery progress continues until the hospital discharge. Various tightly wound dressings are discontinued, and I can do some walking down the hallway if I have a wheeled walker with me. I feel horrendous, but a normal horrendous.

I noticed an elderly gentleman in a room a few doors down. I never saw visitors, and an Aide confirmed he had no family. I would spend some time sitting with him. We chatted when he was alert enough. He had suffered a broken pelvis from a fall at the Senior Facility he lived and was in bad shape. Al passed away before I was discharged.

December 17. Discharged. I still felt like a wall fell on me, but I was happy to be able to deal with the aches and pains from my own recliner, which also served as my bed for a while :) At this point, I don’t think I realized just how badly my body was traumatized. Nor how far removed from my normal fitness levels I was. Nor how much of a challenge it was going to be to get back to ‘normal’.

I think back to the middle of December until today, and I am grateful for today’s small victory. It is a Blessing. My wife, Jill, has reminded me that I still do not understand how close to passing away I was on 2 occasions during the hospitalization and surgeries, so that I need to keep expectations in perspective :)
Stellar comeback! Congratulations, so when is your next Camino? Lol
 

Hilarious

Hilarious
Camino(s) past & future
Planning stage Camino Frances from SJPdP (Sept. 2019)
Today was a great day. :) A totally great day!!!!

Today I was finally able to complete my regular training hike circuit. This circuit is 6.8 miles (11 kms) long, and gains 2300 feet (701) meters within the first 2 miles. The trail/path goes up and then back into the Cascade Foothills, and then back down to the parking area. I had put a video on YouTube via John Sikora which shows an abbreviated version of that regular training hike circuit.

My time was still 26 minutes longer than before, but it just felt extraordinary to walk that trail once again. My knees and ankles are back into shape and handled all that downhill grade brilliantly. Then again, they’ve been working at it for a while now.

I’ve got to say I really had doubts that I would ever get back to this point, much less to pre-illness fitness levels. Now, I am thinking that my body will be able to fully recover :)

The following bit was written to help me recall the chain of events, and to put into perspective, why today is such a big deal for me. I wanted to share the big positive improvement of today. Reading the summary below is optional :)

********************************************************************************************************************

For a 9-month period during 2018 (which included the time on my 2nd Camino last September and October) severely problematic hydroceles had been developing. The prevailing theory as to ‘why’ this began, was that it was a side effect from inguinal hernia repair surgery performed in the fall of 2017.

After arriving home last October from the Camino, symptoms became more severe. In December, severe pain and a high fever set in, along with other signs of systemic infection. My consulting physician referred me immediately from his office to the hospital’s emergency room in order to be immediately admitted and have various diagnostic imaging performed.

That night, December 07, 2018, the first surgery was performed. Fournier’s Gangrene was diagnosed after lab testing of debrided tissues also revealed a variety of nasty bacterial bugs. Heavy-duty I.V. antibiotics were keep flowing for the next 6 days.

December 8. I was again taken to surgery in order to have a more complete exploration and more infected tissue debridement. The hydroceles were repaired at that time. I was so out of it during this whole time I barely was cognizant of much of anything. . .which was probably a blessing. :)

December 9. I was taken for a third surgery to determine why fever and other symptoms were not subsiding significantly. Another area of infection was discovered, and significant tissue debridement was done. A revision of the cystocele repair was also done on one side. Infection control specialists were consulted from several medical centers over real time video conferencing. I remember thinking what a lousy television program it was. A Hospitalist (yes, that is a specialty) was brought in to deal with all care regarding the systemic infections.

December 10. Another surgery was performed in the early AM. The surgical nurses and I are apparently on a first name basis; although I was fuzzy about just who is who. I do remember that one nurse had spectacularly gorgeous eyes, which is all that I could really see with the surgical masks and garb on.

This time as I was waking up in the recovery room, just barely regaining consciousness, my recovery bed was being rapidly pushed back into an operating room. Apparently, I was hemorrhaging quite severely, and the surgeon needed to quickly find and plug the leak.

All I remember was not really caring or being cognizant of what was going on around me.

When I woke up again, I was back in my hospital room with two bags of blood dangling on one I.V pole; a second, I.V pole was dangling a couple of other bags of clear fluids, which included my I.V. antibiotics. I had I.V tubing inserted in both arms, and an oxygen mask covering my nose and mouth.

I was too fuzzy headed to care much about anything at that time. I do remember being asked Soooo Many Questions by a lot of people. . . or what seemed like a lot of people. I also remember feeling incredibly irritable, even angry, for no real reason.

December 11. Significant progress has occurred with resolving the infections. My body temperature is almost at normal levels. My oxygenation levels have stabilized and are back to normal. Now the primary concern is the surgical recovery with all the dressings and packings and stuff.

December 12. I.V. antibiotics are discontinued in favor of oral antibiotics. All I.V.s are now gone, and my arms are free of tubing. I am still having blood drawn for testing twice a day, though. My arms are full of needle tracks and bruises.

December 13 to 16. Recovery progress continues until the hospital discharge. Various tightly wound dressings are discontinued, and I can do some walking down the hallway if I have a wheeled walker with me. I feel horrendous, but a normal horrendous.

I noticed an elderly gentleman in a room a few doors down. I never saw visitors, and an Aide confirmed he had no family. I would spend some time sitting with him. We chatted when he was alert enough. He had suffered a broken pelvis from a fall at the Senior Facility he lived and was in bad shape. Al passed away before I was discharged.

December 17. Discharged. I still felt like a wall fell on me, but I was happy to be able to deal with the aches and pains from my own recliner, which also served as my bed for a while :) At this point, I don’t think I realized just how badly my body was traumatized. Nor how far removed from my normal fitness levels I was. Nor how much of a challenge it was going to be to get back to ‘normal’.

I think back to the middle of December until today, and I am grateful for today’s small victory. It is a Blessing. My wife, Jill, has reminded me that I still do not understand how close to passing away I was on 2 occasions during the hospitalization and surgeries, so that I need to keep expectations in perspective :)
Sooo happy for you Dave!
 

davebugg

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2017)
Camino Frances (2018)
Camino Ingles (2019)
You are marvellous. Our bodies truly are "fearfully and wonderfully made." So glad this dark period continues to show you the wonders of your body, and how fitness really can be regained... sometimes!
Thank you, Rebekah. You are so right; when so many struggle with crippling illness and injury from which recovery is not likely, I feel so thankful for my blessings.
 

Ivan_Prada

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Francés-(septiembre 2018)
Portugués-(en planes 2021)
Today was a great day. :) A totally great day!!!!

Today I was finally able to complete my regular training hike circuit. This circuit is 6.8 miles (11 kms) long, and gains 2300 feet (701) meters within the first 2 miles. The trail/path goes up and then back into the Cascade Foothills, and then back down to the parking area. I had put a video on YouTube via John Sikora which shows an abbreviated version of that regular training hike circuit.

My time was still 26 minutes longer than before, but it just felt extraordinary to walk that trail once again. My knees and ankles are back into shape and handled all that downhill grade brilliantly. Then again, they’ve been working at it for a while now.

I’ve got to say I really had doubts that I would ever get back to this point, much less to pre-illness fitness levels. Now, I am thinking that my body will be able to fully recover :)

The following bit was written to help me recall the chain of events, and to put into perspective, why today is such a big deal for me. I wanted to share the big positive improvement of today. Reading the summary below is optional :)

********************************************************************************************************************

For a 9-month period during 2018 (which included the time on my 2nd Camino last September and October) severely problematic hydroceles had been developing. The prevailing theory as to ‘why’ this began, was that it was a side effect from inguinal hernia repair surgery performed in the fall of 2017.

After arriving home last October from the Camino, symptoms became more severe. In December, severe pain and a high fever set in, along with other signs of systemic infection. My consulting physician referred me immediately from his office to the hospital’s emergency room in order to be immediately admitted and have various diagnostic imaging performed.

That night, December 07, 2018, the first surgery was performed. Fournier’s Gangrene was diagnosed after lab testing of debrided tissues also revealed a variety of nasty bacterial bugs. Heavy-duty I.V. antibiotics were keep flowing for the next 6 days.

December 8. I was again taken to surgery in order to have a more complete exploration and more infected tissue debridement. The hydroceles were repaired at that time. I was so out of it during this whole time I barely was cognizant of much of anything. . .which was probably a blessing. :)

December 9. I was taken for a third surgery to determine why fever and other symptoms were not subsiding significantly. Another area of infection was discovered, and significant tissue debridement was done. A revision of the cystocele repair was also done on one side. Infection control specialists were consulted from several medical centers over real time video conferencing. I remember thinking what a lousy television program it was. A Hospitalist (yes, that is a specialty) was brought in to deal with all care regarding the systemic infections.

December 10. Another surgery was performed in the early AM. The surgical nurses and I are apparently on a first name basis; although I was fuzzy about just who is who. I do remember that one nurse had spectacularly gorgeous eyes, which is all that I could really see with the surgical masks and garb on.

This time as I was waking up in the recovery room, just barely regaining consciousness, my recovery bed was being rapidly pushed back into an operating room. Apparently, I was hemorrhaging quite severely, and the surgeon needed to quickly find and plug the leak.

All I remember was not really caring or being cognizant of what was going on around me.

When I woke up again, I was back in my hospital room with two bags of blood dangling on one I.V pole; a second, I.V pole was dangling a couple of other bags of clear fluids, which included my I.V. antibiotics. I had I.V tubing inserted in both arms, and an oxygen mask covering my nose and mouth.

I was too fuzzy headed to care much about anything at that time. I do remember being asked Soooo Many Questions by a lot of people. . . or what seemed like a lot of people. I also remember feeling incredibly irritable, even angry, for no real reason.

December 11. Significant progress has occurred with resolving the infections. My body temperature is almost at normal levels. My oxygenation levels have stabilized and are back to normal. Now the primary concern is the surgical recovery with all the dressings and packings and stuff.

December 12. I.V. antibiotics are discontinued in favor of oral antibiotics. All I.V.s are now gone, and my arms are free of tubing. I am still having blood drawn for testing twice a day, though. My arms are full of needle tracks and bruises.

December 13 to 16. Recovery progress continues until the hospital discharge. Various tightly wound dressings are discontinued, and I can do some walking down the hallway if I have a wheeled walker with me. I feel horrendous, but a normal horrendous.

I noticed an elderly gentleman in a room a few doors down. I never saw visitors, and an Aide confirmed he had no family. I would spend some time sitting with him. We chatted when he was alert enough. He had suffered a broken pelvis from a fall at the Senior Facility he lived and was in bad shape. Al passed away before I was discharged.

December 17. Discharged. I still felt like a wall fell on me, but I was happy to be able to deal with the aches and pains from my own recliner, which also served as my bed for a while :) At this point, I don’t think I realized just how badly my body was traumatized. Nor how far removed from my normal fitness levels I was. Nor how much of a challenge it was going to be to get back to ‘normal’.

I think back to the middle of December until today, and I am grateful for today’s small victory. It is a Blessing. My wife, Jill, has reminded me that I still do not understand how close to passing away I was on 2 occasions during the hospitalization and surgeries, so that I need to keep expectations in perspective :)
Wow!, Davebugg. Glad to read about your ordeal. My prayers for a prompt recovery and a fruitful Camino Pilgrimage with loved ones.
 

nycwalking

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF: (2001, 2002, 2004, 2014). Hospitalera: 2002, Ponferrada. 2004, Rabanal del Camino.
Davebugg,

Thanks for posting your journey through and mighty return from illness land.

It is very, very inspirational.

When next on camino in October please give us Live on Camino posts.

Buen camino to you and wife and Caleb.

Peace!
 

davebugg

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2017)
Camino Frances (2018)
Camino Ingles (2019)
It puts a touch of tendinitis into perspective!
Incredible recovery. I would be interested to know something of your get fit regime.
Hi, Magwood. . I may be able to help a bit with your tendonitis issue; so send me a PM if you wish.

Fitness regimen . . . I'll repost something I had written previously on the topic below.

Let me say that, as big as the hill was that I faced with this medical stuff, I am in awe of those who face the mountains of significant disease processes like cancer and MS and Parkinson's, etc, and yet never give up.

The main issue for the post-recovery was fighting through the mental fog of defeatism, and my wallowing in how much was lost. I just hated the thought of having to start all over to get into shape; I knew what needed to be done, but the weight of "I don't want to do it" was like a two hundred pound Gorilla sitting on my shoulders. My gosh, the lack of motivation was so palpable that I felt like I could build a garden shed from it. But then THAT would require motivation as well :)

When I was cleared to start getting back into shape, I had to fight through those lack of motivation issues and just choose to do it. In the beginning when I was using my treadmill to re-start cardio conditioning, I would change into my workout shorts and shoes while actually hollering "Why am I doing this. I hate this. I just can't do it. etc" I would tell myself that I was only going to do the treadmill for 5 minutes (knowing that I needed to do 20 minutes). I whined and grumbled at the dog; whined and grumbled at it being too hot or too cold; whined and grumbled at the fact that my clothes were a bit snugger because of gaining some weight; you name it and I grumbled about it on the way to the treadmill.

The funny thing was that, because I have a slightly competitive nature, once I started on that treadmill, I simply could not bring myself to stop until I exceeded the 20 minute goal I set. I never did stop at 5 minutes :) Then over the next many weeks, the 20 minutes increased to 30 then 40 then an hour. At that point, I simply did away with timed goals, and went for distance goals while hiking up and down the foothills.

I also want to thank John Sikora for his Camino series of Day-By-Day videos on YouTube. I would watch them as a helpful diversion while I was struggling on the treadmill. They also gave me the motivation to keep walking just a little farther than I had planned :)

And of course this Forum. . . it would help keep my spirits lifted as I would read through the different threads each day. Thank you all so very, very much 👍👍🙏🙏🙏

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I can share with you the quick basics I follow when I train, that way each person can apply the principals for their individual needs, physical conditions, and limitations.

[NOTE: Before undertaking any change in activity level or exercise, be sure to check with your medical provider first. Even a quick phone call informing him/her of your plans will allow your provider to give you any guidance that is deemed important.]

There are two parts to how I train:

1. Cardiovascular fitness.
2. Muscle strengthening.

With both parts to an exercise plan, it is far better to go slower and be more deliberate and committed to your fitness time, than to overdo it by rushing the exercises and risking overuse injuries and becoming discouraged. Using THR zones, you will always make progress even though you take more time to reach your goal.

Cardiovascular fitness is the ability for the heart and lungs to supply oxygenated blood to your muscles during exercise while under load, and your muscles ability to use that oxygen efficiently so they can produce energy.

A valuable and important tool that is easy and good to follow for developing cardio capacity is the concept of Target Heart Rate zones (THR). It doesn't matter what your fitness level is, THZ will allow each person to develop at their own speed and point of fitness.

Exercises should be used which will allow you to hit a target heart rate (THR) zone, over a set period of time during exercising, which provides the needed aerobic effort for conditioning. This is a website which will help you calculate what your target heart rate zones will be.

https://www.lifespanfitness.com/fitness/resources/target-heart-rate-calculator

Treadmills at incline, running, walking at a faster than normal pace, walking up hills, using rowing machines, HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) workouts, riding a bicycle at a faster than normal pace, swimming, etc. are all examples of effective aerobic exercises when used to achieve target heart rates.

Keep in mind that as your fitness level improves, it will take a more sustained effort to hit the same heart rate zones. That is why using THR zones is so effective. They don't change relative to one's fitness level. Someone extremely out of shape who cannot exercise as hard and as long as someone who is extremely fit, will still reach the exact same THR during their exercise sessions. It takes more intensity in training for the person who has a great fitness level to reach 140 heart beats per minute (BPM). An out-of-fitness individual will reach that same 140 BPM in a far shorter amount of time and with far less intensity to the exercise.

As you gain fitness, it will take a longer period of exercise and a harder effort at the exercise to keep reaching 140 BPM. It is this THR phenomenon which allows a person to use their own fitness levels as a guide to steady progress rather than relying on some formula laid out by someone who doesn't know you from a hill of beans.

This is what I do for Cardio. It is based on MY current fitness level as an example of how to use what you have around you as an exercise resource. You do not need a gym membership.

During most of the year, I alternate days of effort and length during the week. Every other day I do a Long Loop Trail which is about 7.5 miles in length and gains a total of 2800 feet in elevation. During the other two or three days, I do the Short Loop Trail, which is 3.8 miles in length and only gains 1215 feet of elevation. When I am up backpacking, that will, of course, serve as a daily workout.

For really crummy weather days --- and lately over the last four weeks when smoke from wildfires made the air hazardous for outdoor activity --- I use a treadmill that can achieve a 30 degree incline, and which I spent a bit of time carefully calibrating to make sure it is reasonably accurate for both speed and incline settings. If I didn't have a treadmill, I could jump rope, stair step, run in place, etc. A lot of times the local high school will let the folks in the district use their facilities.

I decided that I would save money by using a treadmill at home -- not to mention the convenience -- rather than paying a gym membership to use THEIR treadmill. It wasn't cheap, but I now have over 7100 miles on it over the course of several years. I learned how to maintain it and keep it accurate in it's measurements. Having the treadmill at home actually decreases the amount of time spent exercising by eliminating the 'getting to and coming back' from a gym.


Muscle strength is a function of how much maximum force your muscles can exert against resistance. Exercises for strength will also provide a temporary aerobic cardio-vascular workout and effect, but the main goal is to increase your capability to function while under resistance.

Think about having to lift the weight of your body, with a pack, with each step going up the Pyrenees. Or being able to lift and carry a load. Or the constant resistance of your body weight and pack to your shoulders and to the 'core' muscles in your back and abdomen.

Some basic strengthening exercises for home include:
1. push-ups
2. lunges
3. squats
4. planks.

Rather than try and describe the steps involved in properly doing each exercise, do a google search to show you the way to do these exercises.

Again, make steady progress NOT quick progress. The goal is to keep you injury free while you are getting stronger.

This is what I do for strength training and core conditioning. Again, take it easy and build gradually.

In addition to the exercises I listed, I use two pieces of equipment:

1. A cheap set of dumb bells
2. A TRX strap system.

Again, Google will provide and describe and show the basic exercises for this type of equipment. The TRX system is an offshoot of what several folks used in the military while in combat zones where there is no weight lifting equipment. Back then, it was cargo webbing straps. From that, someone made a gazillion dollars with a nicer, more modern iteration all nicely packaged up and all professional looking :)

Why didn't I think of doing that? o_O

Other conditioning issues involve things like ankles, feet, and flexibility. Do a search on this forum for posts I have made about exercises to help prevent shin splints and to help prevent plantars fasciitis.

Regardless of which exercises you are doing, include frequent walks. Not workouts ... just walk at a comfortable pace and for a comfortable period of time. Use this opportunity to try out footwear for Camino. Look for the beginning niggling of potential problems with your feet and joints so that you have plenty of time to have them looked at by a provider and deal with any treatment plan.

After you've been involved in your fitness regimen for about three months, put on the clothing and footwear you will be using on Camino, load up your pack, and for several days in a row walk for a 3 to 4 hour period. See how you feel and at what pace you are able to best sustain yourself. That will give you a baseline estimate to calculate logistical issues surrounding the question of how far can I comfortably walk within a given amount of time. If you feel you need more time with conditioning before doing that type of walking, then wait for another month or two.

Yes, things and conditions can be different once you are on Camino as the unexpected arises, but those walks will help not only give you some insight and guidance, but also help build your confidence.

It will also let you know how your feet, knees, back and shoulders are doing.

More than anything else, enjoy the entire process of getting ready for Camino. Keep thinking about your personal goals for doing Camino and what type of experience you are hoping for. Also, think about what you can contribute, as a pilgrim, to the spirit and nature of the Camino when you begin your first steps toward Santiago.
 

ElnaJune

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2020)
Dave: Congratulations! You have been so generous with your time and wise counsel on this forum—Thank you for all that you have contributed. You are an inspiration to me as I train for my first Camino Frances while working with a couple of chronic diseases. Good fortune in continuing your return to health and fitness. ElnaJune
 

Camino Chrissy

Take one step forward...then keep on walking.
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2015;
Norte/Primitivo 2016;
Frances 2017;
Le Puy 2018;
Portuguese/FishermanTr. 2019
Dave, I add my well wishes to all the other expressions of kindness you have received. You are seeming to bounce back full steam ahead...great news! How nice that your wife, Jill, is to be able to join you on the Ingles this time around!
 

Dorpie

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Santiago to Finisterre to Muxia 2013
Camino Frances May 2015, July 2017, October 2019
Wow @davebugg you've really been through the wringer, delighted that you made it out the other side.

Just a quick word on the inexplicable anger and irritability you experienced. The combination of infection and a general anaesthetic can do strange things to the mind, I certainly wouldn't worry about it.

All the best,

Rob.
 

Mattnlucy

Mattnlucy
Camino(s) past & future
Flights booked from Edinburgh for May 2018 planning walking from Sarria to Santiago
OMG Dave, you have been through the mill. Thank you for sharing your experience, and your grit to get back to physical strength. Love your training programme.

Best wishes
Lucy
 

Bala

Veteran member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances: SJPdP-Burgos, (2015); Burgos-Sarria (2018); Sarria-Santiago (2018).
Frances (2020)
Wonderful! I wish you all the best. May the rest of your recovery be speedy and completely. Buen Camino!!
 

Meggins

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances - One complete St.J.P.P to Santiago plus twice more for 500km each time.
Today was a great day. :) A totally great day!!!!

Today I was finally able to complete my regular training hike circuit. This circuit is 6.8 miles (11 kms) long, and gains 2300 feet (701) meters within the first 2 miles. The trail/path goes up and then back into the Cascade Foothills, and then back down to the parking area. I had put a video on YouTube via John Sikora which shows an abbreviated version of that regular training hike circuit.

My time was still 26 minutes longer than before, but it just felt extraordinary to walk that trail once again. My knees and ankles are back into shape and handled all that downhill grade brilliantly. Then again, they’ve been working at it for a while now.

I’ve got to say I really had doubts that I would ever get back to this point, much less to pre-illness fitness levels. Now, I am thinking that my body will be able to fully recover :)

The following bit was written to help me recall the chain of events, and to put into perspective, why today is such a big deal for me. I wanted to share the big positive improvement of today. Reading the summary below is optional :)

********************************************************************************************************************

For a 9-month period during 2018 (which included the time on my 2nd Camino last September and October) severely problematic hydroceles had been developing. The prevailing theory as to ‘why’ this began, was that it was a side effect from inguinal hernia repair surgery performed in the fall of 2017.

After arriving home last October from the Camino, symptoms became more severe. In December, severe pain and a high fever set in, along with other signs of systemic infection. My consulting physician referred me immediately from his office to the hospital’s emergency room in order to be immediately admitted and have various diagnostic imaging performed.

That night, December 07, 2018, the first surgery was performed. Fournier’s Gangrene was diagnosed after lab testing of debrided tissues also revealed a variety of nasty bacterial bugs. Heavy-duty I.V. antibiotics were keep flowing for the next 6 days.

December 8. I was again taken to surgery in order to have a more complete exploration and more infected tissue debridement. The hydroceles were repaired at that time. I was so out of it during this whole time I barely was cognizant of much of anything. . .which was probably a blessing. :)

December 9. I was taken for a third surgery to determine why fever and other symptoms were not subsiding significantly. Another area of infection was discovered, and significant tissue debridement was done. A revision of the cystocele repair was also done on one side. Infection control specialists were consulted from several medical centers over real time video conferencing. I remember thinking what a lousy television program it was. A Hospitalist (yes, that is a specialty) was brought in to deal with all care regarding the systemic infections.

December 10. Another surgery was performed in the early AM. The surgical nurses and I are apparently on a first name basis; although I was fuzzy about just who is who. I do remember that one nurse had spectacularly gorgeous eyes, which is all that I could really see with the surgical masks and garb on.

This time as I was waking up in the recovery room, just barely regaining consciousness, my recovery bed was being rapidly pushed back into an operating room. Apparently, I was hemorrhaging quite severely, and the surgeon needed to quickly find and plug the leak.

All I remember was not really caring or being cognizant of what was going on around me.

When I woke up again, I was back in my hospital room with two bags of blood dangling on one I.V pole; a second, I.V pole was dangling a couple of other bags of clear fluids, which included my I.V. antibiotics. I had I.V tubing inserted in both arms, and an oxygen mask covering my nose and mouth.

I was too fuzzy headed to care much about anything at that time. I do remember being asked Soooo Many Questions by a lot of people. . . or what seemed like a lot of people. I also remember feeling incredibly irritable, even angry, for no real reason.

December 11. Significant progress has occurred with resolving the infections. My body temperature is almost at normal levels. My oxygenation levels have stabilized and are back to normal. Now the primary concern is the surgical recovery with all the dressings and packings and stuff.

December 12. I.V. antibiotics are discontinued in favor of oral antibiotics. All I.V.s are now gone, and my arms are free of tubing. I am still having blood drawn for testing twice a day, though. My arms are full of needle tracks and bruises.

December 13 to 16. Recovery progress continues until the hospital discharge. Various tightly wound dressings are discontinued, and I can do some walking down the hallway if I have a wheeled walker with me. I feel horrendous, but a normal horrendous.

I noticed an elderly gentleman in a room a few doors down. I never saw visitors, and an Aide confirmed he had no family. I would spend some time sitting with him. We chatted when he was alert enough. He had suffered a broken pelvis from a fall at the Senior Facility he lived and was in bad shape. Al passed away before I was discharged.

December 17. Discharged. I still felt like a wall fell on me, but I was happy to be able to deal with the aches and pains from my own recliner, which also served as my bed for a while :) At this point, I don’t think I realized just how badly my body was traumatized. Nor how far removed from my normal fitness levels I was. Nor how much of a challenge it was going to be to get back to ‘normal’.

I think back to the middle of December until today, and I am grateful for today’s small victory. It is a Blessing. My wife, Jill, has reminded me that I still do not understand how close to passing away I was on 2 occasions during the hospitalization and surgeries, so that I need to keep expectations in perspective :)
Bravo! Bravo! Dave......what a comeback!!!
I will be hobbling along the Camino this Fall - hope you will also be back soon!
Buen Camino ---)
 

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF2012,Le Puy/CF 2015 Portugues 2017 Norte 2018, CF 2019
Thanks. This October 18 Jill and I are on Camino Ingles. I am awaiting Caleb's decision about Camino Aragones for this October 9, ahead of when Jill would arrive in Madrid. :)
Amazing story of fortitude and strength my friend. I never knew about your struggles and so glad you are ready to go! After you finish the Inglis scoot over to SJPP for a October 29 start to SDC! Hope your son walks with you. It would be a dream come true if one of my girls would (right now because of their jobs could) walk with me. You have been on quite a Camino without leaving home pal!!!
 

Elle Bieling

Elle Bieling, PilgrimageTraveler
Camino(s) past & future
Inglés, '14 '17 Finisterre, '14 '17 '18 Primitivo, '15 '18 Portuguese, '17, '18 San Salvador, '18
As a holistic nurse and yoga instructor, I'd say your recovery was quite phenomenal. And you are more than a "little" competitive, even if it is only with yourself. As my dear, late father used to say, "It takes one to know one!" Congratulations my friend, and thank-you for sharing your journey. May it be an inspiration to many. And may you have no future medical emergencies, only emergency Caminos! Happy trails to you! 😊
 

thistleamy

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Portuguese (2019)
Today was a great day. :) A totally great day!!!!

Today I was finally able to complete my regular training hike circuit. This circuit is 6.8 miles (11 kms) long, and gains 2300 feet (701) meters within the first 2 miles. The trail/path goes up and then back into the Cascade Foothills, and then back down to the parking area. I had put a video on YouTube via John Sikora which shows an abbreviated version of that regular training hike circuit.

My time was still 26 minutes longer than before, but it just felt extraordinary to walk that trail once again. My knees and ankles are back into shape and handled all that downhill grade brilliantly. Then again, they’ve been working at it for a while now.

I’ve got to say I really had doubts that I would ever get back to this point, much less to pre-illness fitness levels. Now, I am thinking that my body will be able to fully recover :)

The following bit was written to help me recall the chain of events, and to put into perspective, why today is such a big deal for me. I wanted to share the big positive improvement of today. Reading the summary below is optional :)

********************************************************************************************************************

For a 9-month period during 2018 (which included the time on my 2nd Camino last September and October) severely problematic hydroceles had been developing. The prevailing theory as to ‘why’ this began, was that it was a side effect from inguinal hernia repair surgery performed in the fall of 2017.

After arriving home last October from the Camino, symptoms became more severe. In December, severe pain and a high fever set in, along with other signs of systemic infection. My consulting physician referred me immediately from his office to the hospital’s emergency room in order to be immediately admitted and have various diagnostic imaging performed.

That night, December 07, 2018, the first surgery was performed. Fournier’s Gangrene was diagnosed after lab testing of debrided tissues also revealed a variety of nasty bacterial bugs. Heavy-duty I.V. antibiotics were keep flowing for the next 6 days.

December 8. I was again taken to surgery in order to have a more complete exploration and more infected tissue debridement. The hydroceles were repaired at that time. I was so out of it during this whole time I barely was cognizant of much of anything. . .which was probably a blessing. :)

December 9. I was taken for a third surgery to determine why fever and other symptoms were not subsiding significantly. Another area of infection was discovered, and significant tissue debridement was done. A revision of the cystocele repair was also done on one side. Infection control specialists were consulted from several medical centers over real time video conferencing. I remember thinking what a lousy television program it was. A Hospitalist (yes, that is a specialty) was brought in to deal with all care regarding the systemic infections.

December 10. Another surgery was performed in the early AM. The surgical nurses and I are apparently on a first name basis; although I was fuzzy about just who is who. I do remember that one nurse had spectacularly gorgeous eyes, which is all that I could really see with the surgical masks and garb on.

This time as I was waking up in the recovery room, just barely regaining consciousness, my recovery bed was being rapidly pushed back into an operating room. Apparently, I was hemorrhaging quite severely, and the surgeon needed to quickly find and plug the leak.

All I remember was not really caring or being cognizant of what was going on around me.

When I woke up again, I was back in my hospital room with two bags of blood dangling on one I.V pole; a second, I.V pole was dangling a couple of other bags of clear fluids, which included my I.V. antibiotics. I had I.V tubing inserted in both arms, and an oxygen mask covering my nose and mouth.

I was too fuzzy headed to care much about anything at that time. I do remember being asked Soooo Many Questions by a lot of people. . . or what seemed like a lot of people. I also remember feeling incredibly irritable, even angry, for no real reason.

December 11. Significant progress has occurred with resolving the infections. My body temperature is almost at normal levels. My oxygenation levels have stabilized and are back to normal. Now the primary concern is the surgical recovery with all the dressings and packings and stuff.

December 12. I.V. antibiotics are discontinued in favor of oral antibiotics. All I.V.s are now gone, and my arms are free of tubing. I am still having blood drawn for testing twice a day, though. My arms are full of needle tracks and bruises.

December 13 to 16. Recovery progress continues until the hospital discharge. Various tightly wound dressings are discontinued, and I can do some walking down the hallway if I have a wheeled walker with me. I feel horrendous, but a normal horrendous.

I noticed an elderly gentleman in a room a few doors down. I never saw visitors, and an Aide confirmed he had no family. I would spend some time sitting with him. We chatted when he was alert enough. He had suffered a broken pelvis from a fall at the Senior Facility he lived and was in bad shape. Al passed away before I was discharged.

December 17. Discharged. I still felt like a wall fell on me, but I was happy to be able to deal with the aches and pains from my own recliner, which also served as my bed for a while :) At this point, I don’t think I realized just how badly my body was traumatized. Nor how far removed from my normal fitness levels I was. Nor how much of a challenge it was going to be to get back to ‘normal’.

I think back to the middle of December until today, and I am grateful for today’s small victory. It is a Blessing. My wife, Jill, has reminded me that I still do not understand how close to passing away I was on 2 occasions during the hospitalization and surgeries, so that I need to keep expectations in perspective :)
Dave

I wish you all the best in your journey back to the Camino. You are such a wonderful resource, contributor and supporter - I never imagined you were going through this health setback. Continued well wishes for a safe and fruitful training season as you prepare for your next Camino...

Much gratitude
Amy
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances 2019
Today was a great day. :) A totally great day!!!!

Today I was finally able to complete my regular training hike circuit. This circuit is 6.8 miles (11 kms) long, and gains 2300 feet (701) meters within the first 2 miles. The trail/path goes up and then back into the Cascade Foothills, and then back down to the parking area. I had put a video on YouTube via John Sikora which shows an abbreviated version of that regular training hike circuit.

My time was still 26 minutes longer than before, but it just felt extraordinary to walk that trail once again. My knees and ankles are back into shape and handled all that downhill grade brilliantly. Then again, they’ve been working at it for a while now.

I’ve got to say I really had doubts that I would ever get back to this point, much less to pre-illness fitness levels. Now, I am thinking that my body will be able to fully recover :)

The following bit was written to help me recall the chain of events, and to put into perspective, why today is such a big deal for me. I wanted to share the big positive improvement of today. Reading the summary below is optional :)

********************************************************************************************************************

For a 9-month period during 2018 (which included the time on my 2nd Camino last September and October) severely problematic hydroceles had been developing. The prevailing theory as to ‘why’ this began, was that it was a side effect from inguinal hernia repair surgery performed in the fall of 2017.

After arriving home last October from the Camino, symptoms became more severe. In December, severe pain and a high fever set in, along with other signs of systemic infection. My consulting physician referred me immediately from his office to the hospital’s emergency room in order to be immediately admitted and have various diagnostic imaging performed.

That night, December 07, 2018, the first surgery was performed. Fournier’s Gangrene was diagnosed after lab testing of debrided tissues also revealed a variety of nasty bacterial bugs. Heavy-duty I.V. antibiotics were keep flowing for the next 6 days.

December 8. I was again taken to surgery in order to have a more complete exploration and more infected tissue debridement. The hydroceles were repaired at that time. I was so out of it during this whole time I barely was cognizant of much of anything. . .which was probably a blessing. :)

December 9. I was taken for a third surgery to determine why fever and other symptoms were not subsiding significantly. Another area of infection was discovered, and significant tissue debridement was done. A revision of the cystocele repair was also done on one side. Infection control specialists were consulted from several medical centers over real time video conferencing. I remember thinking what a lousy television program it was. A Hospitalist (yes, that is a specialty) was brought in to deal with all care regarding the systemic infections.

December 10. Another surgery was performed in the early AM. The surgical nurses and I are apparently on a first name basis; although I was fuzzy about just who is who. I do remember that one nurse had spectacularly gorgeous eyes, which is all that I could really see with the surgical masks and garb on.

This time as I was waking up in the recovery room, just barely regaining consciousness, my recovery bed was being rapidly pushed back into an operating room. Apparently, I was hemorrhaging quite severely, and the surgeon needed to quickly find and plug the leak.

All I remember was not really caring or being cognizant of what was going on around me.

When I woke up again, I was back in my hospital room with two bags of blood dangling on one I.V pole; a second, I.V pole was dangling a couple of other bags of clear fluids, which included my I.V. antibiotics. I had I.V tubing inserted in both arms, and an oxygen mask covering my nose and mouth.

I was too fuzzy headed to care much about anything at that time. I do remember being asked Soooo Many Questions by a lot of people. . . or what seemed like a lot of people. I also remember feeling incredibly irritable, even angry, for no real reason.

December 11. Significant progress has occurred with resolving the infections. My body temperature is almost at normal levels. My oxygenation levels have stabilized and are back to normal. Now the primary concern is the surgical recovery with all the dressings and packings and stuff.

December 12. I.V. antibiotics are discontinued in favor of oral antibiotics. All I.V.s are now gone, and my arms are free of tubing. I am still having blood drawn for testing twice a day, though. My arms are full of needle tracks and bruises.

December 13 to 16. Recovery progress continues until the hospital discharge. Various tightly wound dressings are discontinued, and I can do some walking down the hallway if I have a wheeled walker with me. I feel horrendous, but a normal horrendous.

I noticed an elderly gentleman in a room a few doors down. I never saw visitors, and an Aide confirmed he had no family. I would spend some time sitting with him. We chatted when he was alert enough. He had suffered a broken pelvis from a fall at the Senior Facility he lived and was in bad shape. Al passed away before I was discharged.

December 17. Discharged. I still felt like a wall fell on me, but I was happy to be able to deal with the aches and pains from my own recliner, which also served as my bed for a while :) At this point, I don’t think I realized just how badly my body was traumatized. Nor how far removed from my normal fitness levels I was. Nor how much of a challenge it was going to be to get back to ‘normal’.

I think back to the middle of December until today, and I am grateful for today’s small victory. It is a Blessing. My wife, Jill, has reminded me that I still do not understand how close to passing away I was on 2 occasions during the hospitalization and surgeries, so that I need to keep expectations in perspective :)
Thanks, Dave. I am so happy for you and I’m glad you brought all your Camino friends up to date on what you have been through and your spectacular, blessed recovery. I just completed the CF at age 74, slow and steady. Your advice and guidance on the how’s and why’s of the Camino were with me every step of the way. I thought of you often as I walked, grateful to you for your generosity and kindness in sharing your knowledge and experience with pilgrims who are getting ready for their long walk across Spain. Congratulations! You’re back!
 

JillGat

la tierra encantada
Camino(s) past & future
C. Frances
SJPP - Finisterre - Muxia, May 2016
C. Frances, Sept 2017
Camino Portugues, June 2019
Dave, Thanks for posting this here and reminding us that often all is not lost. It's very discouraging to be injured, especially when it threatens to stop you from doing what you love to do. And such a serious, out-of-the-blue, unusual condition you developed. I'm so glad to hear you are getting so much better!
 

AndreaCT

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Fall 2016 Camino Frances to Leon
Fall 2017 Camino Frances to Finisterre
May 2019 Portuguese
Dave, I had no idea of the trials and stressors that you have gone through lately. Thanks again for posting something to motivate people. I am so thrilled that you and your wife are heading off on a walk this fall. I'd love to go on a walk with my husband, but he'd by cycling - so it wouldn't "wheely" be a walk.
 

davebugg

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2017)
Camino Frances (2018)
Camino Ingles (2019)
Thanks, Dave. I am so happy for you and I’m glad you brought all your Camino friends up to date on what you have been through and your spectacular, blessed recovery. I just completed the CF at age 74, slow and steady. Your advice and guidance on the how’s and why’s of the Camino were with me every step of the way. I thought of you often as I walked, grateful to you for your generosity and kindness in sharing your knowledge and experience with pilgrims who are getting ready for their long walk across Spain. Congratulations! You’re back!
That is so very kind of you to say; thank you. :)
 

davebugg

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2017)
Camino Frances (2018)
Camino Ingles (2019)
Amazing story of fortitude and strength my friend. I never knew about your struggles and so glad you are ready to go! After you finish the Inglis scoot over to SJPP for a October 29 start to SDC! Hope your son walks with you. It would be a dream come true if one of my girls would (right now because of their jobs could) walk with me. You have been on quite a Camino without leaving home pal!!!
Doing a third Camino Frances would be terrific; Jill would not appreciate me abandoning her, though. After the Ingles, we are renting a car and doing a 14 day Euro Road Trip before departing out of Frankfurt to home on November 9.

But since the ERT (Euro Road Trip) is an open and flexible itinerary, we could head to SJPdP for a day, walk up to Orrison and the Virge de Orrison, and then take the shuttle back down to SJPdP for the night. Who knows, Jill might enjoy getting a flavor of a pilgrim walk on the Napoleon :)
 

davebugg

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2017)
Camino Frances (2018)
Camino Ingles (2019)
Glad it's better. You owe yourself a lot of credit to be back in training mode. Best of luck on the upcoming Caminos.
I blame your videos, John; they helped to keep me on the treadmill :) Besides, I was hoping that maybe we could partner up on doing a Camino Ingles series, so I had little choice but to keep going :)
 

willydp

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
CI June 2019
Thanks for sharing your struggle to get where you are now.
Quite an achievement 👍
Respect 😉
And thanks for continuing helping us here at the forum😎
We learn a lot from your wise advices.
Carpe Diem and Buen Camino 👣
 

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF2012,Le Puy/CF 2015 Portugues 2017 Norte 2018, CF 2019
Doing a third Camino Frances would be terrific; Jill would not appreciate me abandoning her, though. After the Ingles, we are renting a car and doing a 14 day Euro Road Trip before departing out of Frankfurt to home on November 9.

But since the ERT (Euro Road Trip) is an open and flexible itinerary, we could head to SJPdP for a day, walk up to Orrison and the Virge de Orrison, and then take the shuttle back down to SJPdP for the night. Who knows, Jill might enjoy getting a flavor of a pilgrim walk on the Napoleon :)
Perfect hike because if she likes it you can tell her that's about the hardest part of the Camino. Come with me the rest is a piece of cake!!!!:)
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Portugues May 2019
Dear Dave, Please give you wife, Jill, my best and a warm hug. I think I can say for all of us, that our fondness and appreciation of you extends to her also. This community also holds her in our hearts and in our prayers. I'm sure, without you needing to say anything, that her steadfast love and support was essential to your great recovery. It must have been very scary for her to see her wonderful husband be so sick and several times near death. Im sure she is just as thrilled at your recovery as you are, and looking forward to the travel plans you both have.
 

davebugg

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2017)
Camino Frances (2018)
Camino Ingles (2019)
Dear Dave, Please give you wife, Jill, my best and a warm hug. I think I can say for all of us, that our fondness and appreciation of you extends to her also. This community also holds her in our hearts and in our prayers. I'm sure, without you needing to say anything, that her steadfast love and support was essential to your great recovery. It must have been very scary for her to see her wonderful husband be so sick and several times near death. Im sure she is just as thrilled at your recovery as you are, and looking forward to the travel plans you both have.
I will be sure and pass on your wonderful message to Jill. Thank your your kind thoughts and words. :)
 

davebugg

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2017)
Camino Frances (2018)
Camino Ingles (2019)
Dave, I had no idea of the trials and stressors that you have gone through lately. Thanks again for posting something to motivate people. I am so thrilled that you and your wife are heading off on a walk this fall. I'd love to go on a walk with my husband, but he'd by cycling - so it wouldn't "wheely" be a walk.
I sincerely appreciate your thoughts. It would be wonderful if my post was able to be of help in motivating someone else struggling to meet their goals.
 

Robo

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF SJPdP to SdC
(May 2015)
CF Sarria to SdC
(May 2016)
CF SJPDP-SdC
(Apr/May 2018)
VdlP (2020)
Hi, Magwood. . I may be able to help a bit with your tendonitis issue; so send me a PM if you wish.

Fitness regimen . . . I'll repost something I had written previously on the topic below.

Let me say that, as big as the hill was that I faced with this medical stuff, I am in awe of those who face the mountains of significant disease processes like cancer and MS and Parkinson's, etc, and yet never give up.

The main issue for the post-recovery was fighting through the mental fog of defeatism, and my wallowing in how much was lost. I just hated the thought of having to start all over to get into shape; I knew what needed to be done, but the weight of "I don't want to do it" was like a two hundred pound Gorilla sitting on my shoulders. My gosh, the lack of motivation was so palpable that I felt like I could build a garden shed from it. But then THAT would require motivation as well :)

When I was cleared to start getting back into shape, I had to fight through those lack of motivation issues and just choose to do it. In the beginning when I was using my treadmill to re-start cardio conditioning, I would change into my workout shorts and shoes while actually hollering "Why am I doing this. I hate this. I just can't do it. etc" I would tell myself that I was only going to do the treadmill for 5 minutes (knowing that I needed to do 20 minutes). I whined and grumbled at the dog; whined and grumbled at it being too hot or too cold; whined and grumbled at the fact that my clothes were a bit snugger because of gaining some weight; you name it and I grumbled about it on the way to the treadmill.

The funny thing was that, because I have a slightly competitive nature, once I started on that treadmill, I simply could not bring myself to stop until I exceeded the 20 minute goal I set. I never did stop at 5 minutes :) Then over the next many weeks, the 20 minutes increased to 30 then 40 then an hour. At that point, I simply did away with timed goals, and went for distance goals while hiking up and down the foothills.

I also want to thank John Sikora for his Camino series of Day-By-Day videos on YouTube. I would watch them as a helpful diversion while I was struggling on the treadmill. They also gave me the motivation to keep walking just a little farther than I had planned :)

And of course this Forum. . . it would help keep my spirits lifted as I would read through the different threads each day. Thank you all so very, very much 👍👍🙏🙏🙏

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I can share with you the quick basics I follow when I train, that way each person can apply the principals for their individual needs, physical conditions, and limitations.

[NOTE: Before undertaking any change in activity level or exercise, be sure to check with your medical provider first. Even a quick phone call informing him/her of your plans will allow your provider to give you any guidance that is deemed important.]

There are two parts to how I train:

1. Cardiovascular fitness.
2. Muscle strengthening.

With both parts to an exercise plan, it is far better to go slower and be more deliberate and committed to your fitness time, than to overdo it by rushing the exercises and risking overuse injuries and becoming discouraged. Using THR zones, you will always make progress even though you take more time to reach your goal.

Cardiovascular fitness is the ability for the heart and lungs to supply oxygenated blood to your muscles during exercise while under load, and your muscles ability to use that oxygen efficiently so they can produce energy.

A valuable and important tool that is easy and good to follow for developing cardio capacity is the concept of Target Heart Rate zones (THR). It doesn't matter what your fitness level is, THZ will allow each person to develop at their own speed and point of fitness.

Exercises should be used which will allow you to hit a target heart rate (THR) zone, over a set period of time during exercising, which provides the needed aerobic effort for conditioning. This is a website which will help you calculate what your target heart rate zones will be.

https://www.lifespanfitness.com/fitness/resources/target-heart-rate-calculator

Treadmills at incline, running, walking at a faster than normal pace, walking up hills, using rowing machines, HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) workouts, riding a bicycle at a faster than normal pace, swimming, etc. are all examples of effective aerobic exercises when used to achieve target heart rates.

Keep in mind that as your fitness level improves, it will take a more sustained effort to hit the same heart rate zones. That is why using THR zones is so effective. They don't change relative to one's fitness level. Someone extremely out of shape who cannot exercise as hard and as long as someone who is extremely fit, will still reach the exact same THR during their exercise sessions. It takes more intensity in training for the person who has a great fitness level to reach 140 heart beats per minute (BPM). An out-of-fitness individual will reach that same 140 BPM in a far shorter amount of time and with far less intensity to the exercise.

As you gain fitness, it will take a longer period of exercise and a harder effort at the exercise to keep reaching 140 BPM. It is this THR phenomenon which allows a person to use their own fitness levels as a guide to steady progress rather than relying on some formula laid out by someone who doesn't know you from a hill of beans.

This is what I do for Cardio. It is based on MY current fitness level as an example of how to use what you have around you as an exercise resource. You do not need a gym membership.

During most of the year, I alternate days of effort and length during the week. Every other day I do a Long Loop Trail which is about 7.5 miles in length and gains a total of 2800 feet in elevation. During the other two or three days, I do the Short Loop Trail, which is 3.8 miles in length and only gains 1215 feet of elevation. When I am up backpacking, that will, of course, serve as a daily workout.

For really crummy weather days --- and lately over the last four weeks when smoke from wildfires made the air hazardous for outdoor activity --- I use a treadmill that can achieve a 30 degree incline, and which I spent a bit of time carefully calibrating to make sure it is reasonably accurate for both speed and incline settings. If I didn't have a treadmill, I could jump rope, stair step, run in place, etc. A lot of times the local high school will let the folks in the district use their facilities.

I decided that I would save money by using a treadmill at home -- not to mention the convenience -- rather than paying a gym membership to use THEIR treadmill. It wasn't cheap, but I now have over 7100 miles on it over the course of several years. I learned how to maintain it and keep it accurate in it's measurements. Having the treadmill at home actually decreases the amount of time spent exercising by eliminating the 'getting to and coming back' from a gym.


Muscle strength is a function of how much maximum force your muscles can exert against resistance. Exercises for strength will also provide a temporary aerobic cardio-vascular workout and effect, but the main goal is to increase your capability to function while under resistance.

Think about having to lift the weight of your body, with a pack, with each step going up the Pyrenees. Or being able to lift and carry a load. Or the constant resistance of your body weight and pack to your shoulders and to the 'core' muscles in your back and abdomen.

Some basic strengthening exercises for home include:
1. push-ups
2. lunges
3. squats
4. planks.

Rather than try and describe the steps involved in properly doing each exercise, do a google search to show you the way to do these exercises.

Again, make steady progress NOT quick progress. The goal is to keep you injury free while you are getting stronger.

This is what I do for strength training and core conditioning. Again, take it easy and build gradually.

In addition to the exercises I listed, I use two pieces of equipment:

1. A cheap set of dumb bells
2. A TRX strap system.

Again, Google will provide and describe and show the basic exercises for this type of equipment. The TRX system is an offshoot of what several folks used in the military while in combat zones where there is no weight lifting equipment. Back then, it was cargo webbing straps. From that, someone made a gazillion dollars with a nicer, more modern iteration all nicely packaged up and all professional looking :)

Why didn't I think of doing that? o_O

Other conditioning issues involve things like ankles, feet, and flexibility. Do a search on this forum for posts I have made about exercises to help prevent shin splints and to help prevent plantars fasciitis.

Regardless of which exercises you are doing, include frequent walks. Not workouts ... just walk at a comfortable pace and for a comfortable period of time. Use this opportunity to try out footwear for Camino. Look for the beginning niggling of potential problems with your feet and joints so that you have plenty of time to have them looked at by a provider and deal with any treatment plan.

After you've been involved in your fitness regimen for about three months, put on the clothing and footwear you will be using on Camino, load up your pack, and for several days in a row walk for a 3 to 4 hour period. See how you feel and at what pace you are able to best sustain yourself. That will give you a baseline estimate to calculate logistical issues surrounding the question of how far can I comfortably walk within a given amount of time. If you feel you need more time with conditioning before doing that type of walking, then wait for another month or two.

Yes, things and conditions can be different once you are on Camino as the unexpected arises, but those walks will help not only give you some insight and guidance, but also help build your confidence.

It will also let you know how your feet, knees, back and shoulders are doing.

More than anything else, enjoy the entire process of getting ready for Camino. Keep thinking about your personal goals for doing Camino and what type of experience you are hoping for. Also, think about what you can contribute, as a pilgrim, to the spirit and nature of the Camino when you begin your first steps toward Santiago.
Great result and great post @davebugg .

I'm struggling with motivation, weight and fitness myself.
I'll be going through this post in detail when I get back home tonight!
 

davebugg

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2017)
Camino Frances (2018)
Camino Ingles (2019)
Great result and great post @davebugg .

I'm struggling with motivation, weight and fitness myself.
I'll be going through this post in detail when I get back home tonight!
My youngest son, who was very athletic in high school, has since had weight problems and he is struggling to stay motivated. He is losing weight, and doing it by hiking and walking along with being aware of his food intake. But, it hasn't been a smooth process and there have been temporary relapses with re-gaining some weight and then losing it plus more. It goes in cycles for him.

What he sees is not the overall picture that he weighs less than a year ago, he gets focused on the 2 or 3 pounds he might gain over a week. I am at the point where I can tell when he is in a funk about it. I just remind him that it is the long term result that counts, and that if he has a temporary increase in weight, not to look at it as a failure, but as a just another challenge that. Don't get upset; turn it into determination.
 

Stivandrer

Perambulating & Curious. Rep stravaiging offender
Camino(s) past & future
I´ve got Camino plans until 2042,
- or till I fall flat on my face, whichever comes first !!
- And you are more than a "little" competitive, even if it is only with yourself.
That is the only real competition I myself would like to enter into...

A very good recovery to you David, enjoy...
 
Camino(s) past & future
May 2020
Today was a great day. :) A totally great day!!!!

Today I was finally able to complete my regular training hike circuit. This circuit is 6.8 miles (11 kms) long, and gains 2300 feet (701) meters within the first 2 miles. The trail/path goes up and then back into the Cascade Foothills, and then back down to the parking area. I had put a video on YouTube via John Sikora which shows an abbreviated version of that regular training hike circuit.

My time was still 26 minutes longer than before, but it just felt extraordinary to walk that trail once again. My knees and ankles are back into shape and handled all that downhill grade brilliantly. Then again, they’ve been working at it for a while now.

I’ve got to say I really had doubts that I would ever get back to this point, much less to pre-illness fitness levels. Now, I am thinking that my body will be able to fully recover :)

The following bit was written to help me recall the chain of events, and to put into perspective, why today is such a big deal for me. I wanted to share the big positive improvement of today. Reading the summary below is optional :)

********************************************************************************************************************

For a 9-month period during 2018 (which included the time on my 2nd Camino last September and October) severely problematic hydroceles had been developing. The prevailing theory as to ‘why’ this began, was that it was a side effect from inguinal hernia repair surgery performed in the fall of 2017.

After arriving home last October from the Camino, symptoms became more severe. In December, severe pain and a high fever set in, along with other signs of systemic infection. My consulting physician referred me immediately from his office to the hospital’s emergency room in order to be immediately admitted and have various diagnostic imaging performed.

That night, December 07, 2018, the first surgery was performed. Fournier’s Gangrene was diagnosed after lab testing of debrided tissues also revealed a variety of nasty bacterial bugs. Heavy-duty I.V. antibiotics were keep flowing for the next 6 days.

December 8. I was again taken to surgery in order to have a more complete exploration and more infected tissue debridement. The hydroceles were repaired at that time. I was so out of it during this whole time I barely was cognizant of much of anything. . .which was probably a blessing. :)

December 9. I was taken for a third surgery to determine why fever and other symptoms were not subsiding significantly. Another area of infection was discovered, and significant tissue debridement was done. A revision of the cystocele repair was also done on one side. Infection control specialists were consulted from several medical centers over real time video conferencing. I remember thinking what a lousy television program it was. A Hospitalist (yes, that is a specialty) was brought in to deal with all care regarding the systemic infections.

December 10. Another surgery was performed in the early AM. The surgical nurses and I are apparently on a first name basis; although I was fuzzy about just who is who. I do remember that one nurse had spectacularly gorgeous eyes, which is all that I could really see with the surgical masks and garb on.

This time as I was waking up in the recovery room, just barely regaining consciousness, my recovery bed was being rapidly pushed back into an operating room. Apparently, I was hemorrhaging quite severely, and the surgeon needed to quickly find and plug the leak.

All I remember was not really caring or being cognizant of what was going on around me.

When I woke up again, I was back in my hospital room with two bags of blood dangling on one I.V pole; a second, I.V pole was dangling a couple of other bags of clear fluids, which included my I.V. antibiotics. I had I.V tubing inserted in both arms, and an oxygen mask covering my nose and mouth.

I was too fuzzy headed to care much about anything at that time. I do remember being asked Soooo Many Questions by a lot of people. . . or what seemed like a lot of people. I also remember feeling incredibly irritable, even angry, for no real reason.

December 11. Significant progress has occurred with resolving the infections. My body temperature is almost at normal levels. My oxygenation levels have stabilized and are back to normal. Now the primary concern is the surgical recovery with all the dressings and packings and stuff.

December 12. I.V. antibiotics are discontinued in favor of oral antibiotics. All I.V.s are now gone, and my arms are free of tubing. I am still having blood drawn for testing twice a day, though. My arms are full of needle tracks and bruises.

December 13 to 16. Recovery progress continues until the hospital discharge. Various tightly wound dressings are discontinued, and I can do some walking down the hallway if I have a wheeled walker with me. I feel horrendous, but a normal horrendous.

I noticed an elderly gentleman in a room a few doors down. I never saw visitors, and an Aide confirmed he had no family. I would spend some time sitting with him. We chatted when he was alert enough. He had suffered a broken pelvis from a fall at the Senior Facility he lived and was in bad shape. Al passed away before I was discharged.

December 17. Discharged. I still felt like a wall fell on me, but I was happy to be able to deal with the aches and pains from my own recliner, which also served as my bed for a while :) At this point, I don’t think I realized just how badly my body was traumatized. Nor how far removed from my normal fitness levels I was. Nor how much of a challenge it was going to be to get back to ‘normal’.

I think back to the middle of December until today, and I am grateful for today’s small victory. It is a Blessing. My wife, Jill, has reminded me that I still do not understand how close to passing away I was on 2 occasions during the hospitalization and surgeries, so that I need to keep expectations in perspective :)
So glad you are back on the trail Dave. Now you just need to keep the competitiveness down to a level your body can handle, while you get ready for your Camino. Best of luck with the return to full fitness and health.
 

auburnfive

Active Member
Hello Dave
A few years ago, a friend needed a benign cyst behind his knee removed, and decided to wait until after his Camino. After the surgery, he developed a life threatening septicaemia, the family was called in. After several touch and go days he slowly began to recover. His Dr feels that great shape he was in after his walk made the difference. My friend was very heavy set and had done lots of training, he tells people the Camino saved his life. And perhaps it helped to save yours too.
 

Karen Cap

Member
Camino(s) past & future
September2016
Today was a great day. :) A totally great day!!!!

Today I was finally able to complete my regular training hike circuit. This circuit is 6.8 miles (11 kms) long, and gains 2300 feet (701) meters within the first 2 miles. The trail/path goes up and then back into the Cascade Foothills, and then back down to the parking area. I had put a video on YouTube via John Sikora which shows an abbreviated version of that regular training hike circuit.

My time was still 26 minutes longer than before, but it just felt extraordinary to walk that trail once again. My knees and ankles are back into shape and handled all that downhill grade brilliantly. Then again, they’ve been working at it for a while now.

I’ve got to say I really had doubts that I would ever get back to this point, much less to pre-illness fitness levels. Now, I am thinking that my body will be able to fully recover :)

The following bit was written to help me recall the chain of events, and to put into perspective, why today is such a big deal for me. I wanted to share the big positive improvement of today. Reading the summary below is optional :)

********************************************************************************************************************

For a 9-month period during 2018 (which included the time on my 2nd Camino last September and October) severely problematic hydroceles had been developing. The prevailing theory as to ‘why’ this began, was that it was a side effect from inguinal hernia repair surgery performed in the fall of 2017.

After arriving home last October from the Camino, symptoms became more severe. In December, severe pain and a high fever set in, along with other signs of systemic infection. My consulting physician referred me immediately from his office to the hospital’s emergency room in order to be immediately admitted and have various diagnostic imaging performed.

That night, December 07, 2018, the first surgery was performed. Fournier’s Gangrene was diagnosed after lab testing of debrided tissues also revealed a variety of nasty bacterial bugs. Heavy-duty I.V. antibiotics were keep flowing for the next 6 days.

December 8. I was again taken to surgery in order to have a more complete exploration and more infected tissue debridement. The hydroceles were repaired at that time. I was so out of it during this whole time I barely was cognizant of much of anything. . .which was probably a blessing. :)

December 9. I was taken for a third surgery to determine why fever and other symptoms were not subsiding significantly. Another area of infection was discovered, and significant tissue debridement was done. A revision of the cystocele repair was also done on one side. Infection control specialists were consulted from several medical centers over real time video conferencing. I remember thinking what a lousy television program it was. A Hospitalist (yes, that is a specialty) was brought in to deal with all care regarding the systemic infections.

December 10. Another surgery was performed in the early AM. The surgical nurses and I are apparently on a first name basis; although I was fuzzy about just who is who. I do remember that one nurse had spectacularly gorgeous eyes, which is all that I could really see with the surgical masks and garb on.

This time as I was waking up in the recovery room, just barely regaining consciousness, my recovery bed was being rapidly pushed back into an operating room. Apparently, I was hemorrhaging quite severely, and the surgeon needed to quickly find and plug the leak.

All I remember was not really caring or being cognizant of what was going on around me.

When I woke up again, I was back in my hospital room with two bags of blood dangling on one I.V pole; a second, I.V pole was dangling a couple of other bags of clear fluids, which included my I.V. antibiotics. I had I.V tubing inserted in both arms, and an oxygen mask covering my nose and mouth.

I was too fuzzy headed to care much about anything at that time. I do remember being asked Soooo Many Questions by a lot of people. . . or what seemed like a lot of people. I also remember feeling incredibly irritable, even angry, for no real reason.

December 11. Significant progress has occurred with resolving the infections. My body temperature is almost at normal levels. My oxygenation levels have stabilized and are back to normal. Now the primary concern is the surgical recovery with all the dressings and packings and stuff.

December 12. I.V. antibiotics are discontinued in favor of oral antibiotics. All I.V.s are now gone, and my arms are free of tubing. I am still having blood drawn for testing twice a day, though. My arms are full of needle tracks and bruises.

December 13 to 16. Recovery progress continues until the hospital discharge. Various tightly wound dressings are discontinued, and I can do some walking down the hallway if I have a wheeled walker with me. I feel horrendous, but a normal horrendous.

I noticed an elderly gentleman in a room a few doors down. I never saw visitors, and an Aide confirmed he had no family. I would spend some time sitting with him. We chatted when he was alert enough. He had suffered a broken pelvis from a fall at the Senior Facility he lived and was in bad shape. Al passed away before I was discharged.

December 17. Discharged. I still felt like a wall fell on me, but I was happy to be able to deal with the aches and pains from my own recliner, which also served as my bed for a while :) At this point, I don’t think I realized just how badly my body was traumatized. Nor how far removed from my normal fitness levels I was. Nor how much of a challenge it was going to be to get back to ‘normal’.

I think back to the middle of December until today, and I am grateful for today’s small victory. It is a Blessing. My wife, Jill, has reminded me that I still do not understand how close to passing away I was on 2 occasions during the hospitalization and surgeries, so that I need to keep expectations in perspective :)
Congratulations for having a great day! After all you've Been through I guess you appreciate every moment now.
When are you planning to walk the Camino again? Wishing you the best with the hope of a Camino soon on the horizon.
 

davebugg

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2017)
Camino Frances (2018)
Camino Ingles (2019)
Congratulations for having a great day! After all you've Been through I guess you appreciate every moment now.
When are you planning to walk the Camino again? Wishing you the best with the hope of a Camino soon on the horizon.
Date certain for starting the Camino Ingles is October 17. Still to be determined is when - between the last week of September to October 9 - to start the Camino Aragones.

Once the Camino Aragones is completed, I will join Jill when she arrives on October 16 at the Madrid airport. We fly out that same day in the early afternoon to A Coruna. Then either grab a bus or taxi to Ferrol, where we will check-in to our lodging room.

The rest of the afternoon we'll:
  • relax a bit
  • walk around Ferrol
  • eat
  • visit the Ferrol Pilgrim/Tourist Office and/or one of the chapels or churches for our first sello(s)
  • purchase snacks for the next day's walk
  • organize our backpacks so they are ready to grab for the next morning's walk
  • relax
  • eat dinner
  • sight-see and people watch
  • eat some Gelato, pastries, desserts, etc.
  • relax and grab some sleep
You get the drift :)

Early the next morning, it's off to Pontedeume, stopping for breakfast along the way.
 

katie@camino

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF, SJPDP-Finisterre 2016; CPort (Central) from Porto 2017;
CPort (Coastal) from Porto 2018.
Hi Dave, my mum let me know that you'd been in the wars. Sorry that this all happened to you and I can't believe you were recovering from such enormous physical trauma while you were being so helpful towards my parents and me! I really hope your health continues to improve and hope to meet you on the Camino one day. 😊
 

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