So, I Broke My Foot :(

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There I was, just 15 lbs from my goal weight on Saturday morning, rushing to get out of the house to my workout. And. I slipped off of my front stair and broke my foot :(:(:(

This is actually my 2nd time breaking this foot (different place but same side of the foot), and the last time I gained SO MUCH WEIGHT before I was able to workout again. I want this time to be completely different, and maybe even LOSE. So, my plan is to stick very very closely to my 1300 calorie daily goal and hope to see the scale continue to move down, even if it's just a little bit.

Does anyone else have any experience with losing weight while being unable to exercise?
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Replies

  • spring913
    spring913 Posts: 158 Member
    edited October 2016
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    I just broke my big toe 2 weeks ago (I slipped on the stairs too!), couple that with a lung and sinus infection. My toe is obviously not as serious as a broken foot but I'm not allowed to exercise until my doctor clears my toe and lungs. Can't see her until Oct 21, ffs. I am going to start swimming again next week as I personally feel my lungs are ready. I'm so scared I'm going to gain weight. But it's been okay so far. I have a heck of a lot still to loose so it's easier for me than you. Can you focus on maintenance until you're allowed back on it? Give yourself a little break from calorie cutting while your body heals?
  • Spliner1969
    Spliner1969 Posts: 3,233 Member
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    I injured three discs in my back last year twice. Had to have steroid shots both times (actually 4 times total) in my spine to heal it, and was down on my back for weeks. I did not gain weight but I didn't really lose any. I simply logged what I ate, drank LOTS of water (which sucked but was necessary for many reasons - pain killers - and to keep digestion happy while sedimentary) and stayed in my calorie goals (at or near maintenance, yes I added calories back, but tried to keep it to vegetables/good foods). Once I was on my feet again about 4 weeks later I still had to take it easy but logging the entire time and weighing everything helped keep me in check.

    If you broke it you may be down as long if not longer than I was so be diligent, but do consider eating at maintenance or close to it. It might seem like you will gain a little weight but it won't actually be permanent. Eating at maintenance will also help you heal faster. Just a thought. Healthy long-term weight loss is not a quick thing, it's the long game we're playing so keep that in mind when healing. If you stay in a deficit make it a slight one while healing.
  • GauchoMark
    GauchoMark Posts: 1,804 Member
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    I broke my leg a while back in a motorcycle wreck. Had to have 2 surgeries to fix it so I was pretty much sedentary for about 18 months. I still went to the gym and did upper body a couple times a week, but my goal was simply to retain muscle mass. You DO, however, get a lot of sympathy/pity while hobbling around at the gym! Working out on crutches and a cast absolutely sucks.

    I managed to maintain. I ate my RMR while I was completely down. Once I got more active, I ate a couple hundred calories more, but that's about it. It is easy to feel sorry for yourself or make excuses about the crutches being more difficult so you need to eat more, but the bottom line is you are way less active and using smaller muscles (even though you might feel exhausted doing simple things). I made sure I was eating plenty of protein as well.

    I won't lie, it sucked for me. I hope you have an easier time, but I was bored, sitting still, and really just wanted to stress eat! Even once I was physically able, the mental part was tough. It took me a long while to really re-commit back to the gym and eating right.

    Hopefully you won't be affected for very long and can get back into your routine quickly. For now, just eat light, get some protein, hit the gym and do what you can, and sit back and heal.

    Good luck!
  • nowine4me
    nowine4me Posts: 3,985 Member
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    As much as it sucks that you broke your foot, it makes for a nifty experiment. Can you indeed lose weight and feel comfortable by calorie counting alone? I mean, I know people do it all the time, but can YOU? I've never tried it, but I often wonder if I would be satisfied on 1200 per day if I wasn't burning 600 thru running. Please report back. It seems like you would able be able to still lift weights too, so maybe some extra energy toward getting stronger? Sorry.
  • upoffthemat
    upoffthemat Posts: 679 Member
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    Sounds like you have a good plan. Maybe look into some seated exercises?
  • Shana67
    Shana67 Posts: 680 Member
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    Everyone, thank you - this is so super helpful! I was able to stick to around 1250 calories yesterday without much issue, and that was even including watching football (my weakness for eating/drinking too much)! Keep those helpful comments coming :)
  • ryry_
    ryry_ Posts: 4,966 Member
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    I broke and sprained my ankle back in March. The key was not going into pity party mode (which I've done plenty of times before).

    I had to focus on diet and cut back on some of the excess calories I could enjoy from Cardio. I also readjusted my expectations. Instead of 1 lb a week, i was fine with a 1/2 pound. I was even fine with maintenance if I had a couple of higher calorie days. The key was no gaining, no surplus. No IDGAF days where I just ate my feelings.

    I still stayed in the gym and worked out upper body three times a week. I would also do leg extensions and leg curls since they didn't put put weight on my foot. I also used my gyms arm ergometer which didn't burn nearly as many calories but was better than nothing. Once it felt okay I started doing light cycling and then progressed to walking which I did a ton of once my ankle was healed.

    I ended losing about 5 pounds over the 2 months I was injured so it is possible.

    Good luck!
  • aylajane
    aylajane Posts: 979 Member
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    I tore my AC in my shoulder in a motorcycle wreck, and still made it to the gym within a week with arm in sling LOL - not that I *should* have, but by Golly I was not giving up my muscle! I adapted exercises, worked unrelated muscles, etc. It was slower, but I healed way faster - I used my "warm up" time on the treadmill walking to do the Physical Therapy range of motion exercises prescribed, so I was much more diligent and consistent than most of their patients!

    So dont look at this as "no" exercise until you heal - there are a TON of "sitting" workouts for people in wheelchairs, and you can do the thigh and calf machines with a little adjustment until you can work back up to squats etc. dont hurt yourself, but no need to be a couch potato either :)
  • RoxieDawn
    RoxieDawn Posts: 15,488 Member
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    Shana67 wrote: »
    Everyone, thank you - this is so super helpful! I was able to stick to around 1250 calories yesterday without much issue, and that was even including watching football (my weakness for eating/drinking too much)! Keep those helpful comments coming :)

    I think I lost in spite of the exercise. perhaps I needed the downtime when it happened to me, so with rest and sticking to the deficit and not having to play scale games with muscle repair, day to day fluctuations etc.. the trend stayed down during recovery..

    but at least my exercise did not change to hand to mouth!

    You got this, you will be back up and going in no time, and probably rested and stronger than ever!
  • lightenup2016
    lightenup2016 Posts: 1,055 Member
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    nowine4me wrote: »
    As much as it sucks that you broke your foot, it makes for a nifty experiment. Can you indeed lose weight and feel comfortable by calorie counting alone? I mean, I know people do it all the time, but can YOU? I've never tried it, but I often wonder if I would be satisfied on 1200 per day if I wasn't burning 600 thru running. Please report back. It seems like you would able be able to still lift weights too, so maybe some extra energy toward getting stronger? Sorry.

    I agree! I got tendonitis in my foot from overuse, and expected to be down for several weeks. But instead of panicking, I decided to use this as a learning experience. I know life happens and situations are going to come up that prevent workouts from happening, or derail my calorie goal. I plan on keeping this weight off for life once it's gone, so I've gotta know how to roll with it! So anyway, I cut back my calories to offset the lack of exercise, and it was pretty easy to stick to my calorie goal. Also, in one week I actually wound up losing two lbs after having been in a stall for two weeks! It was likely water, but it made me feel better! My foot is actually feeling better after about 10 days of rest, but it has been a good, reaffirming experience to see that I can deal with lack of exercise when the need comes up. Now I'm slowly adding in easy workouts again.

    Which brings me to what you can do in the meantime. These are some things that I did: strength training upper body exercises, floor yoga/stretching exercises, "air bicycle"--this is tiring!, arm cycle (I have an under the desk stationary bike that can be used for arms as well--Desk Cycle--but some gyms apparently have arm crank machines. After a while you can ask your doctor if stationary bike/spinning are okay.

    Good luck, and I hope your foot recovers soon!
  • cwolfman13
    cwolfman13 Posts: 41,874 Member
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    I've been on IR for about 12 weeks without being able to do much...haven't lost, but I'm pretty satisfied with only having put on about 3 actual pounds.
  • mph323
    mph323 Posts: 3,565 Member
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    Shana67 wrote: »
    There I was, just 15 lbs from my goal weight on Saturday morning, rushing to get out of the house to my workout. And. I slipped off of my front stair and broke my foot :(:(:(

    This is actually my 2nd time breaking this foot (different place but same side of the foot), and the last time I gained SO MUCH WEIGHT before I was able to workout again. I want this time to be completely different, and maybe even LOSE. So, my plan is to stick very very closely to my 1300 calorie daily goal and hope to see the scale continue to move down, even if it's just a little bit.

    Does anyone else have any experience with losing weight while being unable to exercise?

    I'm so sorry you broke your foot again, Shana - and oh boy timing! I crashed my bike on Sat. and broke my elbow! About 12 lbs to go.

    I broke my foot 18 months ago and did the same as you, ate my way back to a larger size. You can absolutely lose weight while you're inactive. Stick with your calorie goal, and for motivation think about starting back to your workouts a lb or 2 lighter. You sound like you've put thought into managing your recovery this time, and I know you've got this. You worked your way back before and I know you can do it again :smiley:

    Apologies in advance for typos one handed hunt and pec
  • veggie16mfp
    veggie16mfp Posts: 114 Member
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    I broke my foot 3 years ago. I had to have surgery and was in a wheelchair for about 2 months. I did weights at home in the chair. Best of luck with your recovery. Its such a pain in the *kitten* (foot).
  • snowflake930
    snowflake930 Posts: 2,188 Member
    edited October 2016
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    Honestly, it was easier for me losing weight without exercising. I lost 100# before I even began walking more. Of course I had a lot to lose, but I can honestly state that I was not as hungry as I am now when I go to the gym everyday. There are things you can do with weights for upper body that you could sit and do, so no weight on your broken foot
    I hope you mend quickly! Best of luck!

    BTW, I know more people that lost weight doing no exercise at all, than I know people who lost weight and exercised. Losing weight is all about eating less calories than you burn. It is personal preference how you arrive at weight loss, but no matter how you get there, you lose weight by eating less calories than you burn. Fact.
  • jdhcm2006
    jdhcm2006 Posts: 2,254 Member
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    I sprained my ankle back in March and had to sit out of exercising for a little while. I just made sure to stay committed to my calorie counting and taking the rest that my body needed. There was no sense in trying to overdo it and making the injury worst, thereby guaranteeing that I would be down longer.

    Luckily for me my favorite form of exercise is pole which is very low impact for the ankle and foot. So I only missed 2 weeks of classes, and then when I did come back I was able to modify things to insure that I didn't involve my ankle. So I wasn't down long enough to get out of the mindset of working out. That's the hardest part, keeping your mind focused on your task. I was sick last year for a few months (not dying sick) and while I kept up with pole after I recovered, I fell out of sticking to my calorie goal and my other forms of working out. It took me about 6 months to get back into the mindset to do things properly and by then I had gained 20 of the 25 pounds that I had lost back.

    Just stick with your calorie goal, and possible try to do some upper body exercises.
  • cross2bear
    cross2bear Posts: 1,106 Member
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    I have lost 110lbs since October last year and have not purposefully exercised at all. I have increased my activity since then, but largely as a result of not carrying around so much weight, not as a result of being motivated to work out.

    I have bad knees and my mobility is limited. I just found out today i am going to have knee surgery on November 7th - with a 6-8 week recovery period, I too am worried about putting on pounds, but since I have been successful up to now with just watching my diet, I think I can manage.
  • jo_nz
    jo_nz Posts: 548 Member
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    When I broke my ankle, the time I put on weight was when the cast was off and I was into the rehab stage...more active than the previous sitting on the couch, but added too many cals to my diet.
    So my tip would be when you start to become more active again, increase those calorie goals quite slowly.
    For me the rehab sure felt like really hard work, but it wasn't burning loads of energy.
  • Red_Pill
    Red_Pill Posts: 300 Member
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    Hang in there. You always learn something on the road to recovery at least I have ever time I injure myself. I always come back smarted and 10x more focused yo smash my goals. You got this.
  • SCoil123
    SCoil123 Posts: 2,108 Member
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    Salespeople has a seated cardio routine you can find free online. I used it when I tore my meniscus and couldnt walk.
  • ronjsteele1
    ronjsteele1 Posts: 1,064 Member
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    I had a very bad leg break and tore all of the tendons and ligaments in my ankle at the same time. Nine months of literally not being able to walk (was mostly on the couch), surgery, and still eating normal, I lost 20#'s without actually trying. A nurse friend told me it was because it takes a lot of calories to heal the kind of injury I had. I do not recall that I ate any less then usual. If anything, I tend towards stress eating so probably ate a bit more. Anyways, maintaining can certainly be done and losing can be, I think, if you're thoughtful about what you're eating. I often wonder how much more I would have lost if I'd actually put effort into creating a deficit back then. :p