Before the surgery, I was doing floor work with five-pound weights.
But in the hospital, my elbow and arm were straining to learn the new "log-roll" method of getting out of bed - keeping the shoulders and hips in the same plane, pushing up with arm and elbow to sitting position.
The surgeon did mention in rehab that surgery takes a lot of your system. The OT or PT handed me those cute lime green plastic dumbbells, but only for a couple of seconds.
Then I got home and the PT was taught arm exercises by putting a few ounces on the almost weightless "grabber." I used it with both hands and it seemed foolishly easy until the second sets of all these:
1. Straight arms: lift the "bar" up and down ten times--higher than shoulders then not necessarily down to thighs. Repeat.
2. Straight arms: shoulder height--bring the bar toward you then push it away until arms are extended still at shoulder height. 10 times. Repeat.
3. Straight arms: shoulder height. Move the bar left and right and back 10 times. Repeat.
Embarrassing how easy this looks and still my arms got tired.
Now I use the cane for the bar. I need something to hang on it--better do some research for when I can drive to stores. Soon, they say.
Finally the Duh moment: Haven't been allowed to lift more than 8 or 10 pounds since diagnosis almost two years ago. Then the week after surgery, couldn't sit up far enough to get fork to my mouth. So the arms didn't get much stronger - use it or lose it.