One small step for man…

27 days post op….

So it’s been 9 long days since my last post.  I’m currently in an Aircast boot with 3 wedges

It’s been a very interesting few days though, as my consultant has changed the protocol I’m on for my recovery.

I was on the standard recovery protocol where I would normally still be NWB for another 2 weeks (eugh).  However my consultant has said that because there is no swelling, no bruising and no pain I have moved to an accelerated rehab protocol.

So this means that I allowed to be PWB with 1 crutch….what a life changer!  It was SO difficult at first to commit to lifting my good foot off the ground to put pressure through my injured leg.  Knowing that as soon as you lift that foot off the ground you’re putting weight through your repair site is very daunting. At first I kind of dragged my good foot about an inch across the floor but eventually you just have to commit, push your repaired foot into the ground, grit your teeth and lift that good foot off the ground.  And it was so great….

Within a few minutes I’m walking around the garden with just one crutch, Neil Armstrong’s voice in my ears!  Happy days, it felt like such a huge leap forward in my recovery.

It’s really important to have the crutch on the other side to your injury, so I have injured my right leg, the crutch is in my left hand and they move together, then the good foot moves forward.

This has literally changed my life.  It seems so simple but I can now carry things, pick things up, get something from the fridge, such simple tasks but things that make life so much easier.

The protocol I’m following is here,

It does say that from week 3 onwards (I’m currently 1 day short of 4 weeks) that I can be FWB but that seems a step too far for me so I’m sticking with one crutch for now.

There are a couple of other things it says that I am not doing.  It says I can sleep out of the boot but I’m not going to for a couple of weeks yet.  I’m so used to sleeping in the boot (leg elevated on pillows) that I may as well continue, why have it out of the boot and risk pain or re-injury?

Also, I’m still bagging my wound for showering….I’m really not sure why tbh.  I just don’t have confidence yet in getting my wound wet, probably a bit over protective but so be it.  I also still sit on a stool to shower, there seems no point risking slipping over until I have more strength.  Don’t rush these things….

So how does this change the next couple of months?  Well, originally I was looking at being out of the boot and into shoes at around week 12-14 (first week October) but now I am looking at week 8-9 (end of August), that is a huge difference!

So, how to get yourself into the accelerated protocol?  Here are my 3 top tips!

1. Elevation, elevation, elevation.  I literally had my foot up the entire time, unless I was using the bathroom.  Bed, sofa, repeat.  For 2 weeks.  Man it’s dull but do your best to get through it as you will shave several weeks off your recovery. In my case it’s taken 4-6 weeks off! Thank you Netflix.

2. Rely on friends and family.  Don’t be afraid to ask for help.  I had someone make me a sandwich each day for lunch, simple things like that would take me 20-30 minutes in the kitchen which is time your leg would be down.

3. Sleep with your leg up for weeks on at least 2 pillows or a pile of towels.  I’ve been doing it for 6 weeks now (since injury date) and the swelling had gone within a week of surgery.  Get that leg up and keep it up!  You might find your knee or hamstrings hurt when your leg is up so support that area too, and a rolled up towel between your knees when lying on your side helps loads.

4. Don’t be tempted to stretch that tendon when your boot is off.  The urge to pull those toes back and watch the tendon move is huge.  Keep that foot still until you are told to exercise.  Trust your surgeon and physio experts.

I have another consultant appointment on Saturday for assessment, hopefully another wedge removed and approval to start some serious physio!

Will update in a week or so.

Over and out,


5 Responses to “One small step for man…”

  1. Hi Andy. Yes!! First step is so exciting!!! Congratulations on your progress!

  2. Congrats on taking some one crutch steps! And moving into the accelerated protocol. From what I’ve read, that seems to be the way to go. I bet it won’t be long until only having one free hand is not enough and you move to crutch free walking! Keep up the great work!

  3. Way to go! Keep at it! Definitely keeping things elevated as much as possible for the first 2-3 weeks is key. My doc had me do it for 3 weeks.

  4. Hey Andy how is it going?

  5. Going well!!

    The commitment to FWB has made a great change to everything. I’ve had two physio sessions, another one tomorrow, where I’m getting more and more exercises to do.

    I have 7 different exercises to do morning and night, takes about 15 minutes. They are all fairly classical I think….toe raises, pull toes back, minor heel raises although that one is next to impossible at the moment.
    The only tip is to only stretch to the point of resistance, which won’t be very far. Beyond that and you risk “healing long” which you will come to read a lot about. To be honest though, you’d have to be pretty dumb to stretch to the point of pain and heal long.

    The best news though is I’ve been given the all clear to get on the exercise bike. I had one delivered today, I’ve been on it already for 5 minutes and will do so again shorty. Just 5 minutes at a time on the lowest resistance but at least it’s something.

    Once the crutches are gone I barely notice the boot now. OK so it takes me FOREVER to walk anywhere which drives the wife bananas but apart from that life is getting back to normal. Oh, I can’t drive yet, another few weeks for that but you can’t rush these things.

    So I would say there are a lot of stories about how long the recovery takes and it’s months and months of hell but in truth, what you really want back is your normal life with a bit of physio thrown in. That’s the stage I’m at, back to normal, kinda. I’m nearly 7 weeks out from surgery.


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