Small changes add up to make a big difference. SciFi movies teach us changing even the smallest sliver of the past can radically affect our future, and yet, do we truly live as if we believe that to be true?

Friday I injured myself are playing basketball with my family. What was supposed to be just a fun 2v2 tournament left me with scrapes on both arms and my right calf as well as a jammed up right finger.

When attempting to start my workout week, I realize I was going to have to make some changes. My finger is still not at 100%, despite the swelling going down and a significant increase in my range of motion. I still can’t completely bend my middle finger and I certainly can’t pick up a set of dumbbells.


Perhaps taking the week off would have felt more like an option, had I not recently had a putt-putt injury. You read that right. For weeks, I had to do upper body specific workouts as my big toe healed from an encounter with landscaping rocks on a mini-golf course. The injury even prevented me from wearing any shoes in closet, and had to borrow old lady shoes from my mom. Just this past week, I got back to my favorite sandals, only injure a different digit.

Encouraged by my standing workout date on Mondays and Wednesdays with a friend, I decided to suck it up and make do. Early Monday I researched alternative moves that would allow me to get my workout in without putting too much stress on my injured middle finger. My biggest weakness is hanging and grip strength,which isn’t something I can work on at the moment. I can, however, keep at my strengthen routine, getting creative with the moves I choose.

Workout 1 included step ups with a medicine ball to target my lower body. Cradling the weight with my arms, I kept my finger free off stress. I attempted elevated pushups, but my form suffered when I tried to lift my fingers off the bench I leaned up against.

I intended on using the chest press machine, the variety in my gym with the flat pad pushed with forearms rather than a handle to grip. Instead, I sat backwards on the adjustable chest press machine, and turned it into a back press exercise. While this move won’t help my grip strength, it will build my back muscles. In my quest to be able to do one single pull-up, my upper body can use any help I give it.


Still, I didn’t view building an alternate plan a win. Most of Monday had been craptastic, and I only saw the parts of the day which fit into that view. To celebrate the end of a hard day, I changed into my pajamas immediately upon arriving home from work and crashed on the couch with a bag of chips. I queued up last week’s ninja warrior on my DVR, because nothing says fitness like binge eating junk food and dreaming of being able to achieve crazy and possible things.

As I powered through the bag, I watch Drew Drechsel’s run.The “Real Life Ninja” is my favorite, and I accidentally saw his end result on Twitter. While I wasn’t totally shocked to watch him fall on one of the later obstacles, his attitude afterward caused me to sit up and take notice. More specifically, he cause me to put the chip clip on the bag and put the bag back in the drawer.

In his post run interview, he talked about how falling wasn’t plan, but he was still on the road to victory. Ultimate victory was still within his grasp.

Total light-bulb moment

A month of alternate workouts for a broken toe won’t prevent me from reaching my goal. A week or so babying my middle finger won’t delay my pull-up progress dramatically. Giving up, feeling sorry for myself, or choosing inaction, however, just might derail me for the long haul.

Keep plugging. Don’t throw in the towel. Just because you’ve eaten almost half a bag of potato chips without reckless abandon doesn’t mean that you should finish the bag. And while you’re at it, don’t regret the ball game in which you got your injury. After all, the whole point of being fit is to enjoy playing with your family.