A good week altogether

Summer has came back to Ireland! After a very wet July and a very unstable August, we certainly needed some sunshine and 20+ degrees again. Most of this weekend has been spent outdoors. Not bad for September!

I’m continuing my fitness journey and my way back to normal after the foot injury. During the week, I’ve been enjoying the weather, good lifting sessions in the gym, continued foot rehab, better walking, feeling more confident with the heel raises, making travel plans, and more. A good week altogether.


This Monday didn’t offer anything unusual – so it was all about physiotherapy, work and the gym.

After a few weeks of heavier lifting, now I’m going into a period of endurance training which means more of a full body program with slightly lighter weights and 3 x 10 reps.

  • Single leg press with resistance band
  • Leg raises – haven’t done these for a while and it feels like I’ve become a lot stronger with them!
  • Side leg lifts with resistance band
  • Barbell chest press, 27,5 kgs
  • Flyes, 9 kg dumbbells
  • Tricep pullovers, 9 kg dumbbells
  • Lateral raise, 5 kg dumbbells, left knee on bench

Let’s say that my physio is keeping me on my toes! 😀


I meant to hop on the bike but didn’t. On Tuesday I need to get up very early to get it done, and… it didn’t happen. I’m simply disorganised with my cycling but I love starting the day on the bike, and Tuesdays and Thursdays are the most suitable days. I need to get my ***** together, create the routine and prep the day before so I can just get out of bed and onto the bike. That’s it.

In the afternoon I went to a beach restaurant with a friend for coffee and chat. The weather was much better than expected! Ironically, she’s my friend from the camera club, but I didn’t take any photos. We normally go for photoshoots but have of course come out of that habit when I’ve been hobbling around with the boot. I brought the camera just in case (I always do) but didn’t even take it out of the bag, despite going to a fantastic location. Bummer.


It was gym day! My knee lift walking exercise works quite a lot on my hip flexors and I’ve been seriously sore the last few days. When I went to the gym today I thought to myself “please let him NOT give me leg lifts over dumbbells today!” Guess what one of my first exercise was?

  • Warmup with wall slides and leg raises from dip machine
  • Leg lifts over a dumbbell – oh yay, or not. But it went much better than expected!
  • Side leg lifts with bent knees, resistance band above knees
  • Dumbbell chest press, 10 kg dumbbells
  • Flyes, 9 kg dumbbells
  • Barbell row, 30 kgs
  • Parachutes
  • Seated shoulder press, 6 kg dumbbells
  • Seated bent-over raise, 5 kg dumbbells


Today I finally got on the bike. I used the Kinomap app again and went 11 km along a gravel road in Tuscany. I chickened out at the end because of some very steep inclines, I’m simply not there yet with my leg strength.


I started the day on the bike again, this time about 10 km. Then physiotherapy as usual. Everything is going well.
The weather was fabulous and there was no wind either so I actually took a stroll in the garden with the camera – it’s been a while. I’m beginning to feel comfortable enough walking around on the grass and other uneven areas (but not saying it’s straightforward!). I enjoyed myself trying to photograph bumblebees before work.

Later it was time for the gym. I had a great session today, with some challenging stuff!

  • Warmup with flutter kicks and something else I can’t remember
  • Leg raises with a dumbbell between the feet
  • Single leg glute bridge
  • Barbell chest press, 27,5 kgs
  • Dumbbell row, 15 kg dumbbell
  • Renegade row, 6 kg dumbbells – yay!
  • Swimmers
  • Upright row, barbell 17,5 kgs
  • Forward raise, 5 kg dumbbells

The leg raises with dumbbell – OMG this was much more difficult than I thought. I had to go down to 2 kgs. I managed 8 reps with quite poor form in the first set and in the last set I started to maybe get the hang of it and managed to do 10 – probably not great form but at least better. I hope he won’t give up on me doing these, it’s excellent core work and if something is extra challenging then I want to try again until I can do it. You may remember my Bulgarian split squats!

So how did that Renegade row go, with my toe & foot issue? I’ve had some very stiff and sore big toe joints lately, on both feet, and all exercises from push-up/plank position have been almost impossible. But it’s been improving recently and I decided to give it a try, from full push-up position, using both feet. It actually went quite well. This was a milestone in my injury recovery and made my day! Overall this was a very good session and with some good, important conversations too. I’m in and out (mostly out, fortunately) of worrying about my bone condition, and sometimes I just need some extra pep talk.


This was a wonderful day! I woke up with some truly serious DOMS, and decided against a bike ride. But later I went for a short walk in town. This is another post-injury milestone, strolling in town like normal people! I’m not sure how normal that was though – simple walking anywhere else than inside or around the house is still quite challenging but this is why I need to do it more often. And a week makes a big difference, I feel much more confident walking now than I did a week ago. I’ll get there!

This was the day when I took myself down to the wooden deck for the FIRST TIME this summer. It looked like total ***** since I haven’t been able to do any cleaning or weeding or anything. In addition, storms have torn our small greenhouse to pieces so everything was a mess. My husband cleaned up the greenhouse debris and I did some overall tidying so now finally we have a nice spot there again to enjoy what we have left of outdoors weather. What joy!


My husband never got to the gym on Thursday so he went this morning… and I decided to join him to see what his gym is about. I loved it – definitely my kind of hardcore, no-nonsense gym, with free weights, good machines, sled, wooden box for box jumps or higher step-ups, floor for mat exercises, a few bikes and treadmills. Since I have another session with my personal trainer tomorrow, I was careful to not do too much upper body work but did some dumbbell twist bicep curls and then moved on to machines for leg & hamstring curls, and abductor/adductors. I also did some heavier deadbugs with 3 kg dumbbells, and most of my usual PT exercises. The deadbugs were no joke but I loved them heavier and it’s about time I start using more decent weights for them at home too.

Yes, finally some photos! I’m not looking my best but – working on the legs!!!!

The rest of the day? Enjoying the return of summer weather! I’ve relaxed and watched my husband pretty up the fence with the neighbour, later we went to see the other neighbour for a drink and good chat.

Next week has some very nice weather forecasts and should be good with the usual fitness routine, foot rehab, work, and also another trip to see my physiotherapist in Cork. For once, my questions to him this time will mostly NOT be pain-related but rather to get advice on how to best ramp up my walking, is it now safe to do this and that, and – is it realistic to be able to walk problem-free through the Leonardo Da Vinci airport and generally walk a few km in October.

Because yay, folks, if all goes well we’re finally going back to Italy! There’s a lot to say about this but long story short – we have our holiday paradise in a specific spot there and used to go every year until we moved to Ireland. Now we haven’t been there for 5 years, because of Covid and more. We absolutely can’t wait to get back, see all the lovely places again, see our Italian friends again, and of course enjoy the wines, the arrosticini and whatnot. This season is a nice time to go because the days are usually warm but not super hot, and it’s around the time when most people harvest the olives so hopefully we’ll get to taste the fresh olive oil. We’re still in the planning stage only, so… to be continued, I guess.

Thanks Kim and Deborah for hosting the Weekly rundown link-up!


20 responses to “A good week altogether”

  1. Deborah Brooks avatar

    Yay for a stronger and happier week all around! You know I love Italy too. You will have a fab time!

    1. Susanne avatar

      Oh it will be wonderful – at least as soon as we leave Rome and hit the road towards Abruzzo!

  2. Debbie avatar

    How great to read about so much good news – your improving foot, being able to walk downtown, your upcoming trip to Italy. Your hard work rehabbing is paying off!

    1. Susanne avatar

      YES! I feel good right now! The main issue which is quite small compared to what’s been, is how easily fatigued my feet get for just a small bit of walking, or more challenging surfaces. But it will get better I’m sure.

  3. Kimberly Hatting avatar

    Wow, Susanne, your progress is amazing! Isn’t it amazing how we can take simple things for granted, like walking, until we can’t do them pain-free? The same goes for running (as well as any other activity we enjoy or do routinely). I often think of that on those mornings when I’ve run five “simple” miles at 5AM. There was a time when I couldn’t do that, but now it’s easy-peasy (most of the time, barring injury). I’m grateful for every mile, regardless if it’s effortless or a struggle.

    1. Susanne avatar

      We take too much for granted while we’re healthy and functional. Walking in town nearly made me dizzy – focusing on walking as normally as possible was the main job but then there’s also navigating pavements and steps and uneven surfaces, and people! Still, this walk was my most “normal” walk so far after the injury.
      Being able to run 5 miles is certainly something to be grateful for. When I’m 100% back on track as I’ve probably written in a few places, I won’t run again because the risk for another stress fracture is way too high, but I’ll totally enjoy every second of walking.

  4. Lisa @ TechChick Adventures avatar

    Ah, a trip to Italy!! That is on my bucket list. It sounds amazing.
    Glad to hear you are making such great progress! I know what you mean – just the simple act of walking isn’t always so simple! Hooray for you!

    1. Susanne avatar

      Thanks Lisa and I’m hooraying along with you. This weekend especially has been great.
      I absolutely recommend going to Italy – of course. There’s so much to see and experience there!

  5. Wendy avatar

    Sounds like a great week all around for you! I’m happy for you, for the progress you are making, and for your plans to return to Italy! That photo of your town is just so cute!

    Onward and upward!

    1. Susanne avatar

      Our town IS very cute! – colourful vibrant, and with a lot of flower decorations in the summer. Going out and taking some photos again was so much fun!

  6. Darlene S. Cardillo avatar

    So happy to read this. I remember those worrisome days.

    You’re doing great.

    That machine pic is the machine that I’m afraid to use. My ankle is still too weak. 11 years late.

    Italy is the blogger place to go. Deborah then Cari them Renee. Now you. Lol.

    Hope you continue to make progress.

    1. Susanne avatar

      Thank you, Darlene! I’m definitely in a happy place right now.
      I wasn’t aware of so many bloggers going to Italy! But have been so busy and haven’t kept up with my blog reading. Italy is a lovely place to visit, I’m really looking forward to it.
      And yes, I can imagine that machine would be tough to use after an ankle injury! I prefer squats for legs. But this is a great substitute until I can do them again.

  7. Coco avatar

    Wow, everyone is going to Italy! Glad you are going back to a favorite place.

    Yay on the renegade row victory! Leg lifts with a dumbbell sound REALLY hard! I’d definitely only try with my lightest weights.

    1. Susanne avatar

      That’s a sign of good taste, lol! I can’t wait to get there.
      Yes, those leg lifts were really hard! Lots of technique to master. You need to keep your lower back tight onto the floor like with deadbugs, and start with low weight. It’s still hard! But it’s a powerful core exercise.

  8. Chocolaterunsjudy avatar

    So happy to see you out & about walking — muscle memory is a real thing & before you know it you will just be walking.

    I want to see some pretty photos of your garden!

    Your trip to Italy sounds amazing, and I’m so glad you get to go. You’ve been through a lot.

    Unfortunately looks like we’re back in a holding pattern with travel due to Bandit. We thought maybe we could go somewhere with him, but I think it would be too stressful for him. 🙁

    1. Susanne avatar

      Yes, a good trip to Italy would definitely be a good way relax and settle down after all that’s happened this year. I think I deserve some good times now!
      LOL, sadly “pretty” and “our garden” are two concepts that are incompatible at the moment! 🤣 I haven’t been able to do anything in the garden this year except some weeding (on all fours!), and what I did around the deck on Saturday. We’ve also had very odd weather with two very dry months followed by the wettest July in decades, and all plants are quite unhappy. But I plan to clean up and move around things a little bit now when I’m mobile so there’s the potential it could be at least prettier within a reasonable future. So maybe some photos can happen eventually! I used to take a lot of flower pics and put on Instagram but both the garden and my photography have fallen apart this year.

  9. Jenn avatar

    So after everything, I did something to my toes! Ugh! It’s so hard for planks and pushups and anything that requires grounding through the toes.

    I just want one day where I can work out and have my body leave me alone!

    I love those leg lefts over dumbbells. I think I’m going to do a circuit of them today.

    1. Susanne avatar

      Couldn’t agree more about the toe issue! I’ve managed better recently but both my big toe joints are still sore. For me I think it’s just general soreness since I now do a lot of exercises (most of them from the physio) that challenge the toe area, after months of not using them, and perhaps it will just get better.
      Total yes and amen to having the body leave us alone and just let us do the workouts!
      Perhaps you can do side planks instead for a while? There’s a lot of variations you can do with them.

  10. Jessie Benson avatar

    So glad you’re feeling a bit more like yourself! The endorphins from activity are so good for mental health.

    And this sunshine doesn’t hurt! It’s downright hot in London right now!

    1. Susanne avatar

      Sunshine certainly doesn’t hurt! We’ve had a really warm today, I’m loving it! It feels unreal for September.

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