Pre-injury I had a half-marathon in mind as one of my next physical undertakings. I'll probably do one, eventually, but clearly my focus is elsewhere now. However, I feel like I'm hitting that 'wall' that runners speak of in full marathons (when they hit the unbelievable distance of 18-20 miles and just can't seem to keep going); but this time, it's not running, it's walking.
Since I'm a big fan of trying to keep positive, I drove to PT today with my music cranked, windows down, and saying to myself, "Today will be great!" Monday was a tough PT for me (summary: on the verge of tears the whole time with various frustrations; and oh yeah, the pain!) but Tuesday I felt like I was starting to get trust back in my walk, and didn't seem to be limping as much. I thought I'd walk into PT today and wow them with my improvement!
I posted before, and it was to describe the troubles I'm having in getting a normal gait. I know this is all part of the process of recovery, but as of today (Wednesday) the task seems daunting again. My trainer spent 1.5 hours with me today trying to problem solve, and I must say, his actions and conversations make me think I have him stumped. First, it seemed I was having trouble with extension. However a few exercises later it became clear that I have no additional pain, nor problem, in getting my surgical leg completely straight. Then, it was a backwards-skateboarding sort of motion on the treadmill, which didn't seem to loosen me up any more or get rid of the pain I was feeling. If this particular pain is normal, Drew did not verbalize that!
We did an ultrasound to send waves of heat deep into my knee to help break up scar tissue and "promote healing", and I was told I may feel less pain immediately after treatment. Honestly, I didn't feel a difference (...and they said I was on a 'high' setting!). Then, when icing, instead of putting a cold pack on my leg (which is typical), we took a block of ice and rubbed it directly on my knee near my incision, and kept the cold localized in the area I feel a 'twisting pain' when trying to walk. Once done with these treatments, I tried walking again, and with a numb knee and my poor walking habits, I still couldn't seem to shake the pain.
So, I wish I was writing to say, Hey, more improvement today! But in actuality, I must say this post is more of a release of my frustrations in my lack of improvement. I know it's a tough road ahead, and I'm not giving up, but knowing walking is my next 'big thing' to overcome makes the frustrations mount as I go in to PT and can't find hint of improvement. Additionally, the incision seems to be stuck in place (skin doesn't move freely over top of the knee/cap area, so there must be scar tissue to break up) and even after going through ~5 minutes of torture/manipulation by Drew today, he didn't get it to loosen any more. How am I supposed to manipulate it at home and see improvement, when there's no way I can inflict that much pain on myself??
To think back on the recent physical pain and mental frustrations I have gone through gets me worked up all over again, and it really is turning into a [negative] vicious cycle. I know I can overcome it, it's just a matter of how.
Just over 3 weeks out, I am still proud of how far I've come and the pain I've tolerated, but I am ready to conquer that next step... this time, without a limp...
My 1st Post in 3.5 Years; Almost 5 Years Post-Op
3 years ago