Yo Mom…you missed my heel!

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10K - I made it!!

Filed under: Uncategorized — dreams at 3:57 pm on Saturday, June 12, 2010

For the past 5 years I have been saying that ‘one of these years’ I was going to sign up and walk the Bellin (a 10K run/walk).  I kept blowing it off because I had better things to do.  This year I signed up in early May as soon as I was sure that my wound would not have issues.  I have been trying to walk at a relatively fast pace, but was having to stop after 3-4 miles because of the pain (I have been having some issues with tendinitis).  I set a goal to finish in under 2 hours (although I promised myself that I would be satisfied with finishing).  I told my walking partners that I wanted to keep up with them for the first 2-3 miles, and then I would probably slow down and let them go.  The first three miles went great, and although I started to feel some pain just before the 4 mile mark, I was able to push through it and stay at a decent pace.  I walked the last half mile in some serious pain, but I finished with my walking partners 1:42:42 (6:32 pace).  That’s almost back to my normal walking pace.  I iced as soon as I got home, and at this point it seems like I’m no worse off than my normal exercise.

I’ve never been a runner- and I’ve never had the drive to be one.  I was athletic in high school, but running was never my thing.  I have spent most of the last 9 years (the age of my oldest) as an overweight/borderline obese person who liked to play bar league sports, and walk on a pretty regular basis.  I have always told myself I was going to get back in shape, but I never have.  I feel like this is just the push I needed.  My cousin kept saying the entire way that she wanted to run the distance next year, and although I’m not ready to commit to that- I really want to try running.  I have come to realize that the ability to be ‘in shape’ is a gift, and I need to stop taking it for granted, and send a thank you note in the form of a healthy, active body.

I know this is a bit rambley, but when you have an hour and forty two minutes to think- a lot runs through your mind.  For now- one goal met, and a lot more to come.

Deanne (aka DREAMS)

6.2 miles….I just may be crazy.

Filed under: Uncategorized — dreams at 12:09 pm on Sunday, May 30, 2010

So my wound completely healed up after the second surgery, but my PT is having a hard time getting rid of the scar tissue.  Because of this, or perhaps just in addition to this, I have developed tendinitis.   I am usually ok if I don’t wear anything with a back on it, but I’m still having problems with swelling (although the swelling has really stayed confined to the area around my scar tissue, and that little knobby bone on the outside of my ankle).

My surgeon says that for now I’m better off pushing through the pain of the tendinitis in order to keep progressing with my muscle strength and flexibility.  I have a high pain tolerance, so I really don’t mind this, however I am looking for some advice.  I have been walking 2-4 miles every other day in preparation of walking a 10k on June 12th.  I have always been an active person, but I have never been a part of such an event  - even before my injury.  I REALLY want to finish in under 2 hours (a time that would have been almost laughably easy pre-rupture).  I’m looking for any advice I can get on how to make sure I am ready for the big day.  I plan to ice the night before and stretch really well in the morning.  I have been taking NSAIDS after I walk for pain and swelling, but is it worth it to take them before?  Also- would it be helpful to ice or heat the morning of the ‘race’.  I plan on asking my PT these same questions, but I am looking for advice from those who have ‘been there- done that’.

Also- has anyone else experiences a problem of lowered expectations from those around you.  I am frustrated with people giving me ‘permission to fail’ just because of my injury.  It’s much harder to push through to a goal when everyone else is okay with you failing.  It has given me a great new perspective as a teacher.

Deanne (aka DREAMS)

Some shoe advice

Filed under: Uncategorized — dreams at 7:35 pm on Saturday, May 15, 2010

It’s been a while since I’ve been on…but I’m looking for some advice.  I’m almost 7 months post op (the first operation, and 12 weeks out on a second operation to clean out some scar tissue and fix an internal stitch that was causing a lot of irritation.   My strength and flexibility is getting to the point where I could really kick up the exercise; the problem is that I am still having a lot of issues with scar tissue.

My scar is just to the inside of my left ankle.  Unfortunately the bulk of the scar tissue build up is the spot where the top of my Nike tennis shoes hit.  I have  pair of backless tennis shoes, but they don’t have enough arch support, and the fact that they are completely backless makes it hard to walk briskly, hit high speeds on the cross-trainer, or even use the Stairmaster.  I’m looking for a pair of tennis shoes that has good support, but has a bit lower rise in the back.  I really only need something that is a quarter to half inch lower than my current shoes.

In addition, has anyone run into this problem.  My PT thinks I still need some work on my scar tissue (I’m at the point now where flexibility, and strength are things I can work on my own).  Unfortunately, my insurance only covers 25 PT visits a year.  I have 2 left.  Is it worth it to pay for subsequent visits out of pocket, or with the scar tissue break down on its own (I realize that this may take longer, I just don’t know how many appointments I could afford on my own).

Deanne (aka DREAMS)

Back on track

Filed under: Uncategorized — dreams at 5:45 pm on Sunday, April 11, 2010

After 17 weeks of waiting for my wound to completely heal I was switched over to a new surgeon (the ankle and foot specialist who was on maternity leave after my first surgery).  It took her one appointment to suggest a second surgery to clean out the scar tissue…do some exploring…and try to find out why I wasn’t healing.  I am now just over 4 weeks past that second surgery, and wow…what a different experience it has been.  The wound has healed over (although I am still a little cautious as the skin over one section seems to be thin and weak), and I finally got to go back to PT on Friday.  I expected to have taken a few giant steps back, but much to my surprise I hadn’t lost any flexibility, and I lost very little strength.  I actually found it easier to do some of the exercises because I didn’t have the wound pain stopping me.

Here’s where the mixed emotions part steps in…I am delighted to be back on track, but a bit irked that it took 17 weeks to do something that seemed to put me back on so quickly.  I, however, have resigned myself to not looking back.  I plan on taking where I am and only thinking ahead.

The second weekend in June is a local 10 mile run/walk.  I have always wanted to walk the course, and last year although the physically completing the walk would have been fairly easy last year, I blew it off because I wanted to relax at the end of a long school year.  This year I think the challenge is great enough to make the reward enough to go after.  I have given myself a month to make the decision.  I have gotten back into the gym with some recumbent biking,  and work on the cross-trainer.  My next goal is the treadmill…one step at a time…literally.

Deanne (aka DREAMS)

Second surgery…

Filed under: Uncategorized — dreams at 8:23 pm on Thursday, March 11, 2010

So I had my second surgery yesterday morning.  Apparently there was an internal stitch that may have been causing the irritation.  There was no infection- so they were able to clean it up and close it up.  Now it’s a waiting game…stitches out on the 25th, and hopefully I’ll be able to celebrate Easter in the hot tub!!!

Deanne (aka DREAMS)

Another surgery :(

Filed under: Uncategorized — dreams at 6:04 pm on Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Well I saw a new doctor today (a very well respected foot and ankle surgeon who unfortunately was on maternity leave when I had my surgery).  She suggested opening up the wound and cleaning it out really well.  There is no infection, but she said there could be bacteria growing inside that are hindering the healing process.  I go in next Wednesday and if all goes well she will simply clean it out and stitch it back up.  After 19 weeks of “some wounds just take longer to heal” I’m glad she is taking an active approach - even if it does mean a minor setback in PT and another surgery.

Deanne (aka DREAMS)

Life after PT?

Filed under: Uncategorized — dreams at 7:13 pm on Saturday, February 20, 2010

So next week Friday is my last PT appointment (Doc prescribed 6 weeks @ twice a week).  Although I feel like I have made great strides in my flexibility and strength, I still feel like I have a long way to go before I can get back to my ‘normal’ activities.  Our principal is suggesting 42nd Street as our musical for next year which would mean that I would have to teach a summer school tap class.  Right now I am barely at the point where I can walk at a fairly slow rate without a limp.  I am afraid that without any specific direction- tapping by summer will be out of the question.

I was actually starting to feel good about things until I realized that I only had two appointments left.  Has anyone had luck with continued progression post PT.  I obviously don’t own all of the apparatus and devices they are using to help me stretch and strengthen…so is there one main purchase that anyone can recommend.  I belong to the YMCA- so I do have use of the cross trainer, bikes, and weight equipment.

Deanne (aka DREAMS)

And again…the waiting game…

Filed under: Uncategorized — dreams at 2:52 pm on Tuesday, February 9, 2010

The good news and bad news is that there is nothing wrong with my wound.  Other than the fact that 15 weeks out there is a small spot that has not healed.  Today I went in to get the wound checked, and my surgeon (who is technically the knee and hip specialist) brought in the ankle specialist (she was on maternity leave when my surgery was done) for a consult.  After some digging around they both determined that the wound had no depth to it - which was good news.  Although there were no signs of an infection they put me on a two week course of antibiotics as a ‘precautionary measure’.  They cleaned the spot out and bandaged me back up- told me to continue PT and general rehab without any restrictions, and made me an appointment for 3 weeks.  It really is a small spot that won’t heal, and my biggest problem right now is that I can’t wear any shoe with a back on it.  Not a problem in the middle of summer, or if you live in Arizona.  Unfortunately, I just got home from school early because of an ongoing snowstorm.  I’m really getting sick of wet, cold socks. Ugh…

Deanne (aka DREAMS)

My Pinnocchio foot.

Filed under: Uncategorized — dreams at 9:04 am on Saturday, February 6, 2010

So I would say that PT is going relatively well.  My balance is improving tremendously, and I have progressed from the yellow to the red band.  The one thing that still bothers me is that I feel like I have a wooden foot.  When I try to raise up on my toes, or even when I’m doing horizontal calf raises on the machine- my foot doesn’t bend.  Even when I try to roll heel to toe as I walk, my foot doesn’t seem to roll through- it just plops.  I can see some progress when I am barefoot, but as soon as I put my shoes on I feel like I’m walking on a fake foot.  My PT says that a lot of it is from the tightness, and she has been massaging my arch as well as having me do a few more stretching exercises, but it just doesn’t seem to be making significant progress.  Am I just being over anxious, or is this something that should be making major improvements after two weeks of PT?

Deanne (aka DREAMS)

Survey says….

Filed under: Uncategorized — dreams at 7:00 pm on Wednesday, January 27, 2010

So the good news is that my PT is pretty sure my wound is not infected.  She said the lack of heat, redness, and odor indicate that it is probably not an infection.  However, since the wound doesn’t seem to be making progress (it was making very SLOW progress before I started PT last week) she thinks I should call the doctor’s office and at least let him know that it is not making progress and that there is a small amount of yellowish tinged drainage.  My fear now is that he will tell me to stop PT.  He wasn’t that keen on PT to begin with, and this seems like the perfect excuse.  The problem is that I can see real progress (however incremental).  I find it easier to do the exercises with the bands every day, and I seem to be more sturdy when balancing on my bad foot.

So for now I am exercising and icing as normal…I will be calling my surgeon in the morning to let him know about the drainage and see what my next course of action is.  Thank you for all of your advice and help.

Deanne (aka DREAMS)

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