Last week I wrote about the temporary nuisance of the common cold. I was, at the time, frustrated about having to suspend my workouts for a couple of days. It was an annoyance, but a minor one. I was already working my way back into my normal routine when I wrote last week’s post.

Then life said, “Oh yeah?” As I resumed my normal workout, I started to have problems with my vision. It started with a couple of specks, floaters, in my right eye. A couple of days later a much larger dark spot appeared, more like a blind spot. Two days and a visit to the eye doctor later, I was being rushed to surgery for a detached retina.

All of a sudden, those few days off seemed like nothing compared to what I had ahead of me post surgery. Not only could I not lift anything beyond a water glass, I am also restricted to two basic positions. Either I can sit with my nose pointing to the floor or I can lie on my left side.

So, at this time, movement is at a minimum. No reading, no computer (my husband is taking dictation) and no exercise. Basically the activities that make up the core of my life have suddenly been taken away. Don’t get me wrong, I am grateful that the doctors caught this in time and my vision should return to normal. I know the alternative ending could have been much worse.

That doesn’t change the fact that for the next few weeks my life will be radically different. I am grateful it is temporary but recognize that there is a new and significant challenge before me.

It also reminds me, as life does when you forget something important, there are parts of over our lives we will not have control over.  Usually the control we think we have is much less than the control we actually have. The key to being successful and happy is to worry about the things we can control and don’t waste precious energy on those things we can’t.

During this time period I can’t change what happened or control the conditions of my recovery. What I can control is my attitude, determination and commitment to a healthy and fit life.

So this challenge isn’t an obstacle; it’s a test. When life happens, can I stay focused and committed? Can you? I believe the answer is yes to both questions.

So here is my plan:

  • Follow my doctor’s orders. Rest and recovery is the most important thing right now.
  • Eat right. My body needs nutritious foods to properly heal.
  • Eat less. No exercise means the extra fuel isn’t needed. 5-6 meals per day are still important, just less per meal.
  • Recharge. I have the opportunity to step back, look at my goals and regroup. This is an opportunity we don’t often get. I intend to take advantage of it.

See Also Maintaining Fitness After Surgery Part 2

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