5,000 Seconds


That is approximately how long it would take me to do every single exercise that my therapist has assigned me per day. Well, that’s how long it would take to do each exercise for 12 reps, holding for 10 seconds, with a 5 minute buffer in between categories, and a 30 second buffer between exercises. But that seems like a long time, right? That’s why I wrote it in seconds. 83 minutes isn’t actually all that impressive sounding. And yes, I really did do the math. If you didn’t know I was at least a little geeky by now, you haven’t been paying attention! Don’t believe me? Take a look:

Disclaimer: Yes, the following exercises all have technical names and were not simply invented by me. That said, I am not interested enough in being correct to go find the papers containing the titles. Plus my names probably give a better mental picture than “Shoulder Flexion (Assistive)” anyway.

Foam Noodle Fun (that surprisingly doesn’t involve hitting someone with said noodle, OR a pool…le sigh)

  • Climb the Rope
  • Shifty Arm Box – make a box with your arms, while laying on a noodle, and shift the box left and right. What would you call it?
  • Swing the Arm Triangle – same thing, only a triangle this time!
  • Rolling Pin Arm Desensitizer

Stretching with a Stick (again with the no hitting)

  • Lay flat, raise stick overhead – simple, right?
  • Lying Bicep Curl – oh, oh, I should have said “supine” like other people should know what that means!
  • Use stick to push arm out to the side. Cry.

Pulley Exercises – yes, a real pulley is currently hooked to my front door

  • Generic alternating arm pull up – just like you do at the gym, only with zero weights involved.
  • Same thing, but out to the side
  • Freakish stretch arm behind your back and up between shoulder blades (aka oooow)

Everyone’s Favorite Stretchy “Not-Level-Zero” Rubber-band

  • Try to pull the arm straight – stand on the end of the rubber-band and let gravity (and some force) do the work. Apparently they aren’t working hard enough yet.
  • Side Pull downs
  • Standing Squeeze the shoulders together
  • Rotator Cuff stretch (front)
  • Rotator Cuff stretch (back)

No Cool Gadget to offset the pain for these Exercises (if you consider a pool noodle cool)

  • Quadraped Weight Shift – get on all fours and put your weight on your bad arm. HA!
  • Glenohemural Joint Greasing – drop your elbow to keep your shoulder lubricated (don’t ask me, I just follow directions)
  • Lift the soup can to the front – ok, technically this is “Lift the 1lb weight to the front” but I don’t own 1lb weights, so a soup can will have to suffice
  • Lift the soup can to the side (see above)
  • Lift the soup can behind you (you get the idea)

All told?
20 exercises x 12 reps x 10 seconds per exercise = 2400 seconds

20 exercises x 30 second break between types = 600 seconds

5 categories x 300 second break between categories for setup and “travel” time = 1500 seconds

Inevitable falling off of noodle at least once due to dog interference and therefore necessary “beat the dogs and reset” time = 240 seconds

Grand Total: 4740 seconds daily!

Add to this estimate “time stopped to fast-forward TiVo”, “spacing out while watching tv”, and “randomly necessary Charles interruptions” and you’re over 5k seconds in no time. Throw in a weekly 45 minute long therapist visit, and I’m not really sure that I have time to eat or sleep. I tried using therapy as an excuse to get out of work, but that hasn’t gone over well…yet. So, in case you were considering it, don’t break your collarbone and elbow unless you have a spare 5,000 seconds each day to dedicate to boring, and painful exercises.

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What do we have here?

An often sarcastic, occasionally humorous journal of my training adventures in preparation for the Livestrong century ride. I took up cycling back in '07 in hopes of meeting new people, and, with the help of Team in Training, making my small positive difference in the world -- and haven't stopped spinning since. Follow along as my Trek road bike and I try and hash out our differences, hopefully with me upright and in the saddle.

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