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One Handed Exercise

Have you met Paul De Gelder before? He’s a lovely fella. If you’ve read his book, you’ll know that he’s a bit of a fitness nut – he was exercising in his hospital bed while recovering from his amputations.

When I saw a Facebook post of Paul at the gym last year, I had to find out what he was using. It’s just a weightlifting hook that you can buy from the sports store.

I was pretty quick to copy him. And after a bit of a play, I’ve adapted mine by drilling two holes in the metal part and adding different size carabiners. The holes and carabiners add an extra level of security and functionality. I can loop the carabiner around a kettle bell, hook on to the cable systems, pull the rower and even do assisted chin ups.

Depending on the exercise, I wear it either on my forearm or, above the elbow.

This thing is an equalizer! Before I could not use half the stuff at the gym, now, the boys have to wait their turn until I finish my reps!

Last week Paul put out this video, showing all the stuff he uses at the gym.

The next morning, inspired by his video, I got my personal trainer to take a few snaps during our arm session.

I’m no where near as buff as Paul, but I’m working on it. Maybe you will too!

workout with weightlifting hook

One Hand Tip – Blow Drying Hair

Did you enter the Online Scavenger Hunt competition? You could win an InStyler!

In the mean time, here’s another handy modification that will allow you to brush and dry hair one handed.

One Hand Tips – Batter Scrape

Check out this handy tip, from another Holly, on how easy it is to get the last of the batter out of the bowl – one handed.

Support Networks Galore!

I don’t often talk about my arterio venus malformation (AVM) condition. Here on my website, it gets a brief mention in the About Me page and that’s pretty much it.

I think this is probably because I’ve had it since birth, it became active when I was 6 or 7, and I have lived with it ever since. Complications from the AVM lead to two amputations (first my thumb, then my hand) and I guess this limb loss has been my focus ever since.

I was always lead to believe that AVM was quite rare. That’s why I was quite surprised to find the Ben’s Friends & AVM survivors network. AVM, it seems, isn’t so rare.


For me it was kind of enlightening to read of others with similar pains, complications, losses and treatment experiences. I’m not the only one!

I am so in love with the internet and its ability to bring together so many people. Whether we’re brought together through suffering or triumph, knowing that there are others out there that understand what you’re going through is quite therapeutic.

I don’t know why I didn’t look sooner for AVM groups, but now that I found it, I’m wishing it had been around when I was a kid. Not only for me, but for my mother too. I’ve not yet had a child, so I can only imagine what she went through during my multiple childhood surgeries and those days when nothing stopped the pain. I’m sure she would have loved to been able to speak to other parents and know she wasn’t alone.

Anyways, this isn’t meant to be a woe is me post, I wanted to share the Ben’s Friends & AVM survivors network with you and also tell you about Lion Snaps. Lion Snaps creates these cute ribbons, with the proceeds going to the AVM Survivors Network. You can find Lion Snaps on Facebook.

Lion snaps were designed to be worn on your shoes to show support to those who are recovering from AVM/VM surgerys. To also remind us that recovery is one step at a time. I think of it as putting your best foot forward and to always think of others and not just yourself.

Hands Free Tips – Make-Up

Check out Stevie from BeautyButterfly89! The Butterfly Girl with a huge obsession for make-up!

Stevie has a heap of tutorials filled with make-up and beauty tips. In her videos, this little Butterfly shares how she makes her colourful and glittery looks – all handsfree.

Watching her get dolled up may give you some inspiration to get glammed up in your own way.


Living One Handed – Podcasts

Ryan from Living One Handed has been busy interviewing many amazing and inspiring people. Have a listen to his first few interviews with baseballer Jim Abbott and Ryan O’Neal from Sleeping at Last.

Also keep an eye out for an upcoming 1-UP Hair tie competition run in conjunction with Living One Handed.

Living One Handed

Amputee Expo

Life Without Limits Amputee Expo held by Limbs4Life

What a great day of networking, discovery and friendship!

Amputee Awareness Week 2011

Amputee Awareness Week (4-11 October 2011) is just around the corner. I’m going to be participating this year as a volunteer for the Amputees & Families Support Group Qld Inc.

AFSG is running Sausage Sizzles at 3 Bunnings stores on Saturday 8 October 2011. The sausage sizzles are a chance to raise funds for the purchase wheelchairs, providing limb loss information and give the public an opportunity to ask questions and witness that amputees can be quite productive with “less than 4”.

If you’re in the area, come by and say hi!

For more details on the AFSG and the sausage sizzle click here

I like..

Watching ads on TV, you tend to go into zobmbie mode, waiting for the next segment of your show to start. The Lady Gaga, Google Chrome ad brought me out of zombie zone. In amongst all her little monsters in her ad, Benjamin Teacher stood out to me.

Recently there’s been a lot of live music around, leaving me wishing I could play guitar. Who doesn’t want to be a rock star of some kind. I was contemplating slide guitar, however I don’t need to give up on the idea of playing ‘normal’ guitar. Bejamin Teacher is my inspiration for the week. Proof once again that things are possible, if you want them to be.

If you’d not seen him before, here’s his YouTube video.

Enjoy 🙂

27 July 2011 – Just an update to this post. I also came across Jon Jenkins in my search for guitar inspiration. Another talented guy. Now I have two options for playing guitar!

Support the NDIS

NDIS Take Action

Every Australian Counts needs 100,000 supporters.

Please join the campaign!

I found out about this campaign yesterday while attending a Limbs 4 Life, Amputees in Motion conference. I thought I’d make use of web power and get you all to help get the NDIS reach 100,000 supporters.

What is it?

Every Australian Counts is the campaign for the introduction of a National Disability Insurance Scheme. The NDIS will revolutionise the way people with a disability, their families and carers are supported in this country.

We need to show the government that there is widespread community support for change and that the time for action has come.

You can support the campaign, by taking action to make every Australian count.

Ten reasons why we need the NDIS

Read more