It has been one month since I started seeing my physical therapist, Daniel, twice a week. And…yes…there has been major progress since that initial meeting.
I mean…I started off not being able to walk without a limp…run more than 1 step…and pretty much being unable to do a one-legged squat or pretty much anything involving any sort of stress on my left leg. Gimpy yet again.
But over the weeks, Daniel has entrusted me to more and more dynamic movements to get this hip flexor back into working order. And…for the most part it has been paying off. For one thing, I can jump and hop without anything more than a twinge…and even then, that’s a rare thing.
I have been churning it out on the Alter-G treadmill. The first time he had me on there, he had me at 80% of my body weight. When I went back to see him on Tuesday morning this past week, he put me back on the Alter-G for another 25 minute session. He said to start at 90% of my body weight and if that feels okay…boost it to 95% of my body weight. I started off slow, getting my stride, focusing on form…and after the first 15 minutes, I took it from 90% up to 95% as he said. The pain didn’t climb…it only twinged a few times at me. And I was bored at the slower pace, so I boosted that…so that could have had something to do with it.
Sorry…treadmills bore me! Even really cool anti-gravity treadmills. So, I tend to go faster just to get it done.
After I polished off that run, Daniel said that he felt comfortable giving me the go-ahead to run outside. OUTSIDE!!! OUT-FREAKIN-SIDE!
The angels sang and the birds chirped and life was good. I was pretty excited. Daniel cleared me to run OUTSIDE every-other-day for no more than 3 miles. Thursday would be my first attempt. The thing was…after my run on Tuesday, I was pretty sore on Wednesday. I wasn’t exactly sure if I could get the run done on Thursday. I also started to feel crappy. Thank you seasonal allergies…in February. We had a stretch of weather in the 70s and all the trees started to bud…pollen…pollen everywhere. UGH. I was miserable. So, I got some Benadryl…and curled up in my bed at 8 pm…not looking forward to Thursday morning at all.
But when it came around, I actually only hurt a little bit. Nothing big. And I was able to get through all my dynamic warmups without a problem. So…I went for it. I did my 25-ish minutes of running…stopping when I got to 3 miles. It wasn’t pretty and it wasn’t fast. There was a lot of me thinking about my stride. I could tell I wanted to baby the left hip and would do an occasional limp-run. And at the end of the run, while I felt good, my right ankle was a little sore, which did mean I was compensating. That was frustrating. But…the run went…better than I expected!
I rested the rest of the day and prepared to see my PT on Friday morning. The first thing he did was ask how I was. I told him I was sore and what I gathered from my run. He had me walk the length of the room and said that my limp was gone when I walked…which is BIG!! I’ve been limping around since January 1st. WOOHOO! So, he had me run through some of my lunges and stair work. And then he hand me on the BOSU for some dynamic stuff. And I got a light massage on the hip flexor to see if that helped any with the soreness. And it did. I went into the weekend feeling better.
And then the weather changed again. From 70s down to the 30s. No joke. I was freezing at the Norton Sports Health Training Program run. Most people were running 7 or 14 miles. I was doing 3. Thankfully, I wasn’t the only one in shorts. In fact, my fellow ambassador, Reggie, won for the most under-dressed that day. Poor guy!! Special shout-out to my warm friend, Jack, who helped keep me warm as my body pretty much locked up and didn’t want to move during the warm-ups. I was TOTALLY okay with that! I HATE being cold. HATE. The cold does bad things to my body.
So, after the really weird warm-up session, I shed my long pants to reveal my compression shorts (the ones I bought at Disneyland) and went out with the group, managing 1.5 miles one way (with hills, which I was supposed to be avoiding, but I swear, we ran downtown last time we started at the U of L Row House. UGH. So, while everyone else went on…I had to turn around. Which sucked…but I was definitely following instructions. The last mile was pretty much straight into the howling wind the entire time. When I hit 3 miles, I was right where I started. and I got into the car to warm-up.
And once again, my right ankle was being cranky with me. And it stayed that way the rest of the weekend. I vowed that I was NOT going to run again until I saw Daniel…which should have been today, but my appointment was canceled as he was running a fever and staying home. I see him Thursday morning and will discuss it with him then.
My allergies are clearing up, finally…so that’s good. And I’m feeling better. But…mentally this continues to be a tough pill to swallow. I still have a few meltdowns throughout the week…even when I do get to run.
I start to fret over all the small things, every pain, every twinge…and I focus on what COULD happen. So…to help me stay focused, I made a purchase over at Momentum Jewelry…this wrap:
EVERYTHING you want is on the other side of fear.
THAT…pretty much sums up what I need to focus on these days. It’s like my physical therapist said…there is this area where I won’t be doing enough for my recovery…and then there is doing too much…and there is all this middle-ground. And I’m right on this line…and I just need to push a little more. And that’s what we’re doing.
Once I get this stride, limp-run, Bambi-leg thing fixed.
And that’s is my first month working toward a comeback. MAJOR progress…I’ll take it!