Monday, August 3, 2009

Attack of the Anti-Ass!

Because of the atrophy on my left side, I have long possessed what I call the "anti-ass." The anti-ass is concave instead of convex and has always left me lop-sided, which resulted in pressure sores on my sits bones when I played wheelchair basketball and pants that flapped in the breeze on one side. (You can insert your own "doing everything half-assed" jokes here, if you'd like).

So, six months before the surgery, I decided I was going to re-grow my ass. Thanks to a fitness program I cobbled together from physiotherapist recommendations and episodes of "The Biggest Loser," (more the latter than the former, truth be told), I succeeded in conquering my anti-ass and grew just enough curve that my backside no longer looked like that of an old man. Since the surgery, I've been doing even more exercises to maximize my glutes, so I thought that the days of my ass-related problems were long over. I was wrong.

Last week, one of my physiotherapists allowed me to try to stationary bicycle. This was a great breakthrough for me because a) the cardio junkie in me could work up a sweat and b) I haven't ridden a bicycle since I was injured, not counting the time last summer when I tried to ride my friend's bike, which involved him holding on both to me and to the bike and running alongside me like human training wheels.

My great uncle was nice enough to lend me his stationary bike and I worked my way up from 10 minutes to 25 minutes in just a week. (Unfortunately, I also managed to break the timer, the resistance knob and one foot strap -- sorry Uncle Hugh!). Yesterday, I was riding like the wind, sweating all over my bedroom, and bopping around to a bizarre playlist consisting of Echo and the Bunnymen, "Eye of the Tiger," John Cale's "Paris 1919" and part of the soundtrack of "The Phantom of the Opera," when I realized that sitting had become not quite so comfortable. A check in the bathroom mirror confirmed it: the anti-ass was back. Not only was my ass black and blue, but I'd rubbed all the skin off my tailbone.

I'm assuming that those of you out there in able-bodied land have a reasonable solution for this problem and I would be interested in hearing it. All those professional cyclists look like they could use a sandwich and they don't seem to be complaining about bruised asses (though perhaps the bovine growth hormones they're injecting into themselves makes them somehow immune to this problem?). I don't see any Average Joe commuters having trouble sitting through business meetings. Until I develop the appropriate ass calluses, I'm sitting on two pillows, and this doesn't seem to be helping the problem. Does ass bruising come with the stationary-bike territory? Suggestions ?

1 comment:

  1. Try a pair of cycling shorts. Form fitting and spandex (with a padded ass area), they are not the most attractive items of clothing, but they do keep you more comfortable.