Recall Day 5 of PT if you will….
Three days later, I was completely unable to move my legs. Yes, my calf muscles decided to cramp up in a permanent charlie-horse fashion. I limped around at work, practically fell out of bed at home, and begged Heather for a massage. Oh, I got a massage. It was not the massage I was hoping for through. For 45 minutes, she worked on my poor legs to get the muscle to release.
The verdict? I have an unusally delayed pain response. While most people feel some sort of pain or exertion discomfort within 24-48 hours of exercise, my body waits until after 48 hours to pop up with a warning sign. This could explain why I keep hurting myself. I don’t realize I’m hurt until too late and I’ve already been continuing the exercise whilst injured.
That makes a lot of sense.
What doesn’t make sense is how incapacitated I became after Day 5. Heather says my calf muscles must be really weak. She advises that I take a rolling pin when I get home and have Kevin roll my legs to loosen up the muscle. He refuses after I start bawling and pounding the floor. For those of you who know my pain level tolerance, this was probably worse than when I had my ankle surgeries. I was all shades of messed up.
Of course, I was concerned about sitting in a car for 9 hours to go on vacation. Thankfully, we took several breaks so I could hobble around and work on getting my heels to hit the ground.
Speaking of vacation, we had a wonderful time with my bestie, Gretchen, and her family. A week at the beach was just what the doctor ordered! I was able to get into the ocean and that really, really helped. I even started feeling back to normal by Monday and was able to move around much easier, even with the set of stairs between the first and second level of the cottage. I was a good girl and remembered to do my at-home exercises at night, so Heather was pleased.
When I went into PT yesterday, I was a little scared. Scared because I didn’t know what she would do with me since Day 5 resulted in such a disaster. Plus, technically, Day 7 was my last day on the books and I knew that I wasn’t ready to be released.
We decided to go back to the first week of activities and repeat those. My balance is improving and I know that my ankles are getting stronger. The rest of me, well, that is still unsure.
At the end of the appointment, Heather suggested we TRY once a week for the next three weeks to see how it goes. She wants me to transition into more at home cardio and less PT. I told her she was crazy. But, as I’ve said before, I trust in all things Heather, so I agreed to her plan and we charted out my at-home workouts. I am to “return to prior activity” immediately. That means she wants me to go back to what I was doing when I hurt myself, with modifications.
In addition, she would like me to do my at-home strength training homework and try to do the mini-trampoline every day. Then, she wants me to move into doing my cardio every other day. While most people would do cardio every day and strength training every other day, I need to do the reverse because my lack of strength is what is hurting me during cardio.
As much as I wanted to grab her and tell her that I’d never be out of PT if she suggested this crazy plan, I was secretly pleased. I’m terrified that I’ll hurt myself, but I know I need to try this out otherwise I’ll never get back to exercising on my own.
So here is my plan:
- Walk around the lake every day
- Do my at-home exercises every day
- Attempt to jump for 30 seconds on the trampoline every other day. This will be 30 seconds on each leg and then 30 seconds both legs
- Go back to my muscular structure strength training 6 days a week, using the DVD that I used before
- Now here’s the decision. Do I go back to the dance cardio DVD and do that without jumping or do I find another DVD to do? Heather suggested I try doing half of the DVD, which would only be 15 minutes. So far, I’ve been doing the elliptical at PT for 10 minutes every time with no problems. That was non-impact too, so I have to be careful. Perhaps I’ll try the cardio dance and just do it without the jumping for half of the DVD and see how that goes. Since I’ll be doing it every other day, that should give me a good opportunity to see if I hurt afterwards