Normally these goal posts are meant to congratulate members on achieving their goals. But it would be weird if I congratulated myself lol. Instead, I wanted to give you a little background about why achieving these most recent goals was so important to me and exciting for me to achieve.
I was a gymnast for most of my childhood, not a very good one, but I loved it. However, I was plagued by frequent ankle sprains, specifically my right ankle. Even after I quit gymnasts I would roll my ankle doing the most every day things: walking on the sidewalk and stepping on a crack, turning right while standing at the grocery store… you know, super dangerous activities.
It was around November of 2016 that things went from annoying to ridiculous. I started rolling my ankle 3-4 times a week and any type of weight training would make my ankle swell into a softball. So, I took my stubborn gymnast self to the podiatrist to get Xrays and MRIs. Turns out I had an overly curved heel bone (the reason that I would roll it all the time) and I had completely obliterated my anterior and lateral ligaments in my ankle to the point that there was no hope of reconstruction (the result of rolling my ankle all the time). SO! They scheduled me for surgery… in February of 2017.
Between November 2016 and February 2017 my only “gym goal” was to stay in the best shape I could without making my ankle worse. So…. lots of airdyne and rowing. Which if you don’t know, I really hate both of those! For those 3 months I lost almost all motivation to come to the gym, and when I did come I was a pouty brat (just ask Sean, I was awful). Not having a goal to work towards made going to the gym feel like an obligation… like cleaning the bathroom or doing laundry. You have to do it but, good lord you don’t want to and would be much happier being able to pay someone else to do it for you lol.
On February 1, 2017 , I had my surgery. My magical surgeon scoped out/cleaned out the inside of my ankle joint, replaced my torn ligaments with cadaver ligaments, broke my heel and removed a cheese wedge of bone out of my heel to straighten it, and drilled a screw through the bottom of my heel so it would heal properly (I know, I’m a zombie robot and she’s a badass surgeon!).
I was back in the gym within 4 days of my surgery. My passion to be in the gym was renewed because suddenly I had a goal: heal as fast as possible! I did one legged rowing, one legged skiing, and arms only airdyne. Staying active meant I was only in my cast for 5 weeks instead of 8 weeks.
As soon as that cast came off I started practicing walking everyday (yea, I had to relearn how to walk), because my new goal was to be able to walk like a normal human. Then, I started stretching my ankle out on the slant board everyday, because my next goal was to be able to squat (being in a cast for weeks and having brand new ligaments meant I lost all of my already minimal ankle mobility). By mid March, I was goblet squatting on the slant board and deadlifting with weight.
Six weeks ago I was finally able to start a full powerlifting cycle, squats and all. Being able to lift and set actual lifting goals lit a fire in my heart. I’m a weightlifter, not a powerlifter, so being excited to go bench press at 6am was a really foreign feeling for me lol.
Before November 2016, my powerlifting maxes were: 175lb Back Squat, 130lb Bench Press, and 310lb Deadlift.
I tested my maxes this week, and my post surgery maxes are: 195lb Back Squat (20lb heavier than before my surgery!), 145lb Bench Press, and 295lb Deadlift.
As you can see by the picture, I checked a ton of “Frank” (aka Frankenfoot) and I’s goals off of our goal list. So, I’ll be updating that with new numbers. My next big goal is to compete in a powerlifting meet sometime this winter. And, my ultimate goal is to be able to Olympic lift again by January 1, 2018.
I guess the point of this whole rant is to remind everyone how important setting goals is when it comes to not just progress in the gym, but the motivation to even show up and try. To put it simply, you can’t achieve something until you clearly define what that “something” is. That’s why we have the goal board at the gym, to give you an opportunity to set goals for yourself, and to give your gym family the opportunity to cheer you on.
If you haven’t done so already, take the time to write down some goals for yourself and post them on our goal board. I wrote a blog post a million years back about SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and timed) goals. You can also sit down with one of the coaches to help you set some goals if you don’t know where to start. And, as a special treat, everytime I see a new goal checked off someone’s list, I give them their moment to shine here on the Cap City Strength Blog. So, go set some goals for yourself, and relight that fire in your heart!