Filed Under (Uncategorized) by housemusic on 21-02-2012

Hello ATR club,
I’ve been posting monthly updates on my recovery. Here are the positive points at five months (on Feb. 17) post ATR surgery:
- Less pain on the tendon when walking YEAY!
- Minimal swelling, minimal nerve pain
- I can go up and down stairs normally (big for me, as I live in a 3-level home)
- I have started a PT supervised workout program at my gym which includes lower body exercises with light weights and high repetitoins. I am doing 4 seats each of leg press, lunges, leg extensions, deadlifts and hamstrings curls. This has helped me a lot, specially with the emotional aspect of the recovery.
- I have “graduated” to 30 minutes on the stationary bike or the elyptical trainer and can do even a bit longer without pain.
- I can do 10 single heel raises in the pool, water level to waist.
- I’ve found a deep appreciation for the simple pleasure of walking barefoot.

And for the not so good:
- I cannot complete a single unassisted heel raise
- I still limp, specially after walking longer than 15 or 20 minutes.
- My calf, and entire leg, is atrophied.
- I still cannot do calf raises with weights
- I cannot wear high heels which is important to me.
- I am still doing two weekly therapy sessions while working full time in a demanding, high pressure job.
- I still think about this injury every day, and I still look for something good to come out of this, but I can’t find that…


ryanb on 21 February, 2012 at 2:42 pm #

If you’re doing lunges, I think you’re doing pretty darn well. Lunging forward with the good foot, pushing off with my injured side, was something that came very late in my recovery. I’m pretty sure I was jogging before I could do those lunges ;-)

When you say you are going down stairs normally, do you just mean one foot after the other? Or, are you actually “toe-striking” normally when you land on the injured foot? If so (toe-striking) then that’s another indication that you’re really far along.

If you can do 10 heel raises with the water only at waist level; well, you’ve got to be really close to doing one out of the pool. I bet you can hold yourself up isometrically for a few seconds. Maybe start out just doing “negatives”, lift yourself up with your good foot and control the descent with your injured leg.

Look back to where you were just a month or so ago. It sounds like you’ve really made a lot of progress lately. Good work!

Adam on 21 February, 2012 at 3:21 pm #

As said by Ryan, try not to be too hard on yourself. This injury takes a long time to get over. I’m not expecting to be back to normality before 12 months !

I am a few weeks ahead of you and although I was non operative the state of the tendons is probably about the same now. Mine is still tight and I struggle with heel raises - managing around 10mm off the ground with the bad leg.

I too do lunges and can walk up steps properly on the front of my feet, yet still have tingling to the touch on top of my big toe which indicates some nerve damage.

Everything is getting better day by day and i no longer actively think about my tendon or its state of repair.

At this period in the rehab, I think it is important to look back at where you were 20 weeks ago. Then it may not seem so annoying today.

It is always tough when you think you have hit a wall, but in reality you have come a long way already and the path from now slows as you get closer to full fitness.

Don’t be too hard on yourself, especially about the shoes. Imagine how much pressure high heels put on the legs and tendons and accept that you will be in them eventually, just not now.

Good luck and keep your chin up :o)

Janus on 21 February, 2012 at 5:19 pm #

Housemusic, you wrote under “not so good”:

“- I am still doing two weekly therapy sessions while working full time in a demanding, high pressure job.
- I still think about this injury every day, and I still look for something good to come out of this, but I can’t find that.”

All I can say from my perspective is that you’re doing great. You’re showing yourself or finding within yourself outstanding resilence, self-reliance, and determination. & you’re not letting this muck up your professional life.

As for “waiting for something good to come out of it,” I get that, truly, but here’s what I’m wondering. Here’s what I’m telling myself. How do I make this something positive — something that eventually benefits my life?

It’s a cliche but I think sometimes true that in every setback is an opportunity so overwhelming that it makes the setback insignificant. So what’s the opportunity here? That’s the question I’m struggling with — but I still think it can be answered.

My mini-lessons so far. I’m incrediably thankful for the support of family and friends. I need to trust in others more and socialize things sooner rather than take it all on myself. For activity, I can’t do the trail runs that brought me health and peace of mind — so now I’m working on push-ups and pull-ups. I was weak there and still am — but getting stronger.

So I don’t have a good reply to the “benefits” of ATR. But if I’m as far as long as you are at 5 months, I’d consider that an achievement.

Take some pride in what you’ve accomplished so far. & it looks like all green lights ahead. I need that same combination of both patience and persistence that you’ve displayed: for myself, no self-inflicted stupidity, please, by rushing things.

The view of your current position from someone four months behind you (surgery just over a month ago), looks pretty inspiring.

All best!

housemusic on 23 February, 2012 at 5:13 pm #

Thank you ATR brothers and sisters!
I appreciate the encouragement. This is a long journey, and the support in the blog is a life saver. Here is where we can share our experience with those who understand what we are going through. I am very grateful to everyone who contributes, and look forward to posting a great six month update. Janus, I can’t believe you walked on that achilles for so long before getting help. I went around for two days and it was more than enough!

Janus on 23 February, 2012 at 5:45 pm #

housemusic: I never said I was very bright. Thought at first it was a torn calf muscle and so… by the time I hit the third Dr., surgery w/ FHL tendon transfer the only good option. It’s all good: more important to be on the right path than to just be in motion. That was real mistake I made earlier. All best!

nivergvup on 24 February, 2012 at 6:34 am #

Hey Housemusic,
I am able to run/jog now! Have been on the treadmill for about three weeks. Right now I am going 3 min @ 7.5 and then walking for 2 and then doing that cycle 4 times. Slowly trying to get back into shape! Are you running/jogging yet?

Mulberry Bags Ireland on 24 September, 2012 at 12:29 am #

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