I waited all day yesterday like a kid the night before Christmas. I had it planned. The girls had their sports physicals, then we all had dentist appointments. In between we had to pick up and finish laundry because Allison is coming today. I had to have it all done by 4pm, so I could spend the evening at the GYM! Spin class was at 5:45pm, but I wanted to "pool walk" and eat dinner before. Mission Accomplished! Although I thought I would be able to pool walk for at least 20 minutes and spin for an hour, I only made it through 10 minutes and 40 minutes. I have been advised to stop when it is enough.
Pool Walking: The first minute was a bit iffy. I have been struggling with not getting my WHOLE foot down on the ground. When I do that it straightens my leg and stretches the front of it. Something that is kind of important, and something that also hurts a bit. So I thoughtfully walked flat footed. After 2-3 minutes, it felt like heaven. For the first time in a long time, I wasn't limping. I wasn't hurting. I was walking completely normal, with water up to my neck.
Spin: I kept the seat and handle bars high, took off all of the resistance. I did "clip in" which I am not sure is okay. I will be asking today. The riders around me sprinted, they climbed hills, they stood up and sat down, all while I sat there barely plugging away. My effort level was there, don't get me wrong, but if you looked in the mirror, I looked like a 90 year old climbing Mt. Everest on a beach cruiser. Stop laughing. Around 30 minutes, I was looking at the clock every 2-3 minutes, and I made it to 40. At this point, I pulled my right foot out of my shoe and unclipped it manually, as I have learned from pre-op, that will hurt. I grabbed my crutch, got a wipe and cleaned my bike. This was the point that the very frustrated instructor, frustrated with me, realized why I had ignored every single one of his pleas to join the rest of the class as he stated over the microphone, "Oh wow, I didn't see that you were on crutches! That explains so much!" I smiled. I could feel my quads during the class, and heeeellllloooo, I can feel them even more this morning! They are what I call a "perfect sore!" I used to hope that I would get this kind of sore a few months ago. Not too much, just enough to know that you worked enough to wake-up those muscles.
I was a bit frustrated that I only made it through 40 minutes when the day before I had made it through that at PT; however, that was in two-20 minute segments, and it was my rear end that gave up, not so much my legs. The one thing I have learned about recovery: just because you can do something one day, doesn't mean you can do more or even the same the next. It is definitely a two steps forward, one step back process. Cameron will tell me repeatedly, mostly when he keeps me on crutches day after day, that he doesn't care about what makes me happy today, he cares about what will make me happy a year from now. His point: he can make me happy by taking me off of crutches today, but in a year, I will be miserable when things aren't right.
I feel stronger today. I think the pool walking really has something to it. The pain is slowly, I mean slowly, dissapating, but still there. Emotionally, I feel about 90% back to myself. The other 10% will come over the next few months. Overall, I am extremely happy with my progress so far.