18 weeks post-op.

A little late with this update, mainly because I seem to have arrived at a plateau and don’t have much to add to last week’s note. I’ll admit to slacking off a bit with my exercises earlier in the week - it’s easy for me to do when my leg feels ok - not great, but ok - and I can go about my daily activities reasonably well. Sometimes I want to ignore the entire recovery process and pretend nothing ever happened. Hey, my ankle’s a little stiff! No big deal.

This week’s plan is to update a weekly exercise spreadsheet I used to print out to track my progress. Something as simple as having a piece of paper taped to the refrigerator does wonders for my workout consistency.

What I noticed over the last few days of reduced exercising: My ankle and calf actually end up feeling worse each morning, even with the rest. The stiffness and soreness are more pronounced. I guess it pays to continually work and stretch each day after all. :)

I think that’s the tough part of this stage for me. The first three months provided me with plenty of milestones and achievements. Now in the fifth month post-op each week has become basically the same. I do notice more strength in my calf muscle, but that development is happening a lot slower than the earlier progress.

Random details for week 18: I’ve almost retired the compression sock. I still wear it on occasion, and my foot swells without it, but it doesn’t feel necessary now. I’m walking fairly well most of the time. I do get some stiffness and pain (the pain near the heel, or sometimes in the peroneal tendons), so I still end up limping on occasion if I’m on my feet a lot. My ankle is super-stiff in the morning. I do a round of Theraband exercises as a morning warm-up before I even put my feet on the floor. Then I do a set of gentle calf raises, and then I feel like I can walk around.

We have a trip to Colorado coming up soon. That should break up the rehab monotony a bit. I’ll be interested to see how any sort of incline/elevation affects me. Here at sea level I enjoy a nice blanket of oxygen and not a hill in sight!

3 Responses to “18 weeks post-op.”

  1. I know the feeling PJ! I have the same problem. I’m past 5 months and making myself do the PT regularly is harder now. One of the main PT components for me is running - which I hate. But I make myself do it anyway - bleck! I need to be more consistent with the stretching. Usually my achilles is sore after running so doing calf raises doesn’t feel that great. Of course when I do the calf raises my surgery foot reminds me it is NOT as strong as the other foot so it gets me back to doing the things I should for PT. And progress is slower too so less positive feedback :)

  2. Glad I’m not the only one!

    I’d actually be happy to start running more (I’ve jogged a few times on the treadmill but it doesn’t feel quite right yet). I’d rather go for a run around the neighborhood than haul myself to the gym. I think I’ll be able to do that soon, though.

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