Six Months Progress - Feeling Good

It’s exactly 6 months since I snapped my left Achilles, and over 3 months since my last post. It’s true what others say here - once you get through that initial phase - life gets largely back to normal and progress is gradual, so it feels like there’s not a lot to report.

That said - I went to my mate’s outdoor circuits session 2 days ago, which is a milestone I’ve been looking forward to for a long time. It’s the first time I’ve been back to doing physical stuff that I actually enjoy (though I’ve learned to appreciate walking a lot more than I did). I’m still avoiding running/jumping but that didnt’ stop it feeling like a proper workout given how much my fitness has dropped.

Oli's Circuits

I did previously try and go back to the gym, but I couldn’t bear the feeling of being one of the silent hamsters in a room of wheels. So I’d been trying to do a few “moves” akin to circuit training in my living room at home, to the amusement/annoyance of my girlfriend.

I can do a handful of single leg heel-raises at a time now, which still feels incredible given the muscle wasn’t attached a few months ago. I think I have roughly the same amount of mobility in both sides now too, despite never really doing any “stretching” exercises. The bad one still feels different, tighter. There’s still a big old palpable lump of scar tissue in there.

In terms of putting the muscle back on I’m doing OK:

6 month lower-leg comparison

For reference, this was at 6 weeks, when it’d shrunk by 2 inches:

I think I’m doing well overall. I attribute this to a combination of luck (no complications), being given the right treatment, the right advice, and acting on it. I have to thank the NHS, and the staff at Warwick Hospital (especially my physiotherapist) for this. (As well as achillesblog members of course ;)).

Now I can make a start on losing the 7kg of timber I’ve gained elsewhere since the rupture.

My main concern has been the other side, which still has the symptoms that both sides had for years before the rupture. I feel hopeful about that too though, having recently visited a chap that has dedicated his work to tendons - especially the Achilles. I’ll save that for another post :D

4 Responses to “Six Months Progress - Feeling Good”

  1. Good to hear you’re doing well at the 6 month mark. You’ve gained a lot of muscle back in your calf. That’s awesome!
    I worry about my other ankle too. I’ve had similar symptoms there off and on for the last year or so. Now I’m curious to read your “other post” about the Achilles’ tendon expert you’ve consulted with. Don’t keep us in suspense too long!

  2. Done :)

  3. Hi morcs!

    Just checking in on you since we are exactly 1 day apart with our injuries. I’m curious about your calf strength and heel raises. I feel like my one-foot (left leg) raise is progressing SUPER slowly. I can do about 25 (in sets of 10) before I start feeling like I just can’t get up there anymore. Also, I have such tightness in my foot (which I had prior to my injury. I just think I’m more conscious of it now), but the I start to feel pain in my toes as well when I’m working on my heel raises. I will admit I don’t do them everyday as I probably should just because its so difficult. Do you do heel raises everyday? I sometimes do them as a part of my workout, which I’m just getting back up to 5 times per week, but I’m not doing them several times a day like my home physio program claims I should. Do you feel you’re making good progress with your heel raise? What do you do?

  4. Sorry I missed this! I don’t do them every day any more - instead of doing more reps I add load by wearing a rucksack with a bag of sand/kettlebell in it (I’m up to around 25kg total I think) and just do some holds whilst hanging off a step, then I give around 48 hours recovery depending on how it feels. I’ve basically been told to treat it like weight training/body building - loading it up and allowing for rest. It’s still a way off the “good” side, especially in terms of stamina - like you say after a few sets it’s pretty burned out.