Runnerwannabe is a runner once more!!

June 21st, 2012

I know it’s been a long time since I have posted.  As many find, time heals and we get on with our lives.  I celebrated my 1 year surgery anniversary by running 2 5Ks in 1 week!  What an amazing time.  I had missed running so much and was so pleased to be able to run my first races with decent times.  Not too far off my pre -injury pace and in the bigger race (800 runners), even finished 4th in my age group out of 48.  My achilles still gets very stiff, so I am continuing to do stretching and lots of heel lifts.  One thing that is surprising is how long it has taken for my calf muscle to regain it’s former size.  Still not there by about 3/4 inch.  CRAZY!!  I have been walking, hiking,  running and doing my exercises and still have a ways to go.  That is the hardest thing about running.  Up hills, I just don’t have the strength in that leg and can really feel it.  My muscle cramps in that calf are finally minimal and I am so grateful for that!

My message to all is -  hang in there!!  The first few weeks are the hardest.   I remember how depressed I was at first:  thinking about having to have surgery,  knowing that my summer was blown, work would be very difficult, etc etc.  Dealing with the physical limitations after surgery was hard.  Crutches suck and I about ruined my other achilles by hopping around on my other foot, so be careful about that!!

Then, we all live in fear of re-rupture.  I plan on continuing to run, but am being very careful about anything that involves jumping.  I cannot imagine life without doing the things I love.  So, I am going to continue and try to be as careful as I can.  Going golfing tomorrow:)

Good luck to everyone and speedy recovery!!

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8 1/2 Months

February 17th, 2012

Wow - 8 1/2 months!.

So weird how at first things seemed to go so slow, and then the time does fly by!.    I am very grateful to be doing almost anything I want.  I walk, use my elliptical, and 3 weeks ago started doing Zumba.   My Dr. said no running until spring.   Unfortunately, the more I do, the more I hurt.  I still never go a day without a reminder of my poor achilles.  I still have pain in my calf and foot and even my toes.  My toes used to have the worse nerve pain!  It’s much better, but I still get stabs and tingles.   I get terrible a terrible muscle cramp in my calf almost every night after I exercise.   Even though I feel like I’m doing a lot of exercise, my calf is still smaller and much weaker.  How long does it take to get to 100% normal?   I am eager to run, but my whole foot hurts when I try and my calf still feels so weak.

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Tendon thick - is that normal?

October 13th, 2011

I’m at 19 weeks post surgery.  Sometimes, I can walk almost normal.  I have a little limp later in the day if I walk a lot and the first steps in the morning are still quite painful and stiff.  My repaired tendon is really thick compared to the other.  Is that normal?  Will it ever go back to regular size?

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14 weeks - 4 mile walk

September 8th, 2011

I haven’t posted in awhile  -Have been very busy, which I guess is a good thing!  I walk around pretty normal now.  Just a little limp left and am careful on stairs and uneven ground.  I only use the leg brace that I got to drive.  It’s the only way I can push in the clutch.  Walking comes much before pushing strength.  My tendon is still quite swollen and my foot swells up by the end of the day.  I still have soreness too, especially in my heel.  The nerve pain is better - glad for that!!   We took the dog for a walk this weekend.  First time that I actually ‘walked’ on purpose for exercise.  We went 4 miles and I did fine until the last 1/2 mile and then my heel started to hurt pretty bad.  Monday,  my tendon was very stiff and sore.  I think I over did it!  It’s so hard, because when it feels good, I just want to get back to my regular activity.  A 4 mile walk was nothing - but now is a huge distance.  Still have a ways to go, but being able to walk freely is huge progress.  No crutches, no boot, no nothing but tennis shoes!!!!!!!  Feels so good :)

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Driving again!!

August 18th, 2011

I’m at 11 weeks now.  I got my brace last Thursday and with it, I am able to drive.  I’ve driven to work 3 days this week - about 20 miles each way.  It is still very hard and I can’t keep the clutch pushed in for too long.  If I’m at a red light, I put it in neutral and use the E brake to give my foot a rest.  What a great feeling of freedom!!  The brace allows my foot to dorsiflex, but it locks at about 90 degrees and won’t let my foot over flex the other way.  This lets me push on the clutch without worrying about re-rupturing.  I can kind of flat foot it.  Unfortunately, this has been a crazy busy week at work and I have been doing a lot of walking.  The driving and walking add up to a very sore  and swollen tendon and foot by the time I get home.  I’ve had to start taking a pain pill in the evening.  So, my freedom is bittersweet.  I love that I can drive and walk, but am having more pain.  Sitting now at my laptop with my foot elevated and on ice :).  I will try to post a picture of the brace if I can figure out how to do that.  Speedy healing to all!!

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Anyone using a leg brace?

August 10th, 2011

I am at 10 weeks now.  A few weeks ago when I was at PT, my therapist introduced me to a guy who was at 6 months post ATR.  He was wearing this brace on his leg to prevent re-rupture.  So, I asked my doctor about it and he said, “Sure - that would be a good idea”.  He ordered it for me and I went to Hanger Medical Co. to get fitted.  It was so cool!  They put a sock on my foot and leg, and then a strap on my calf with a magnet on it.  The he took this scanner and scanned my leg.  As he scanned each part, it showed up on the computer - just like CGI.  Eventually my whole lower leg and foot were on the computer.  Way cool!!  They then take the image and make the brace, so it is a perfect fit.  The brace is L shaped and will go under my foot and around my calf.  It is hinged at the ankle to allow for increasing angles as my ROM improves.  The brace fits into regular shoes - so no more boot.  I can’t wait - I go to get it tomorrow.  It will be so nice to be able to walk in shoes, and not worry about re-rupture.  I walk now, but my foot feels so fragile!  I always wear my boot when I go out and especially when I go to work.  I will let you know what the brace is like when I get it.

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Nice weekend at Kelly’s Island

August 1st, 2011

Well, I’ll be at 9 weeks tomorrow.  My husband and I went to Kelly’s Island on Lake Erie for the weekend.  I was a little hesitant, but everything worked out great.  We took the car over on the ferry, so I wouldn’t have to walk as much.  I kept my boot on for most of the time, but actually ventured out in 2 shoes for a little while.  Felt great, bit so scary!!  I never took my eyes off the ground - so worried about uneven ground, gravel,  a stick… - you all know the feeling.  My Doctor is ordering some kind of brace that I can wear in my shoe to keep my foot from flexing too far.  Ii is supposed to help prevent re-rupture.  Sounds good to me!   I have to call the place tomorrow and make an appointment to get fitted.

We had a great weekend.  Plenty of sunshine!  It felt so good to get out and feel almost normal :)  I did walk a lot, but other than heel pain and some swelling, my foot fared pretty well.

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Any advice? I have a stick shift car :(

July 27th, 2011

Does anyone have any advice for driving stick? I haven’t been able to drive. My rupture is on the left and right now I am FWB in a boot, but cannot even imagine pushing in a clutch! Anyone have any experience? How many weeks out will I be able to drive?

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7 weeks (and survived 2 concerts!)

July 23rd, 2011

So, I hit seven weeks on Tuesday - and this has been a very eventful week!  On Monday, I went to my doctor and he said I could FWB, but am to keep by boot on to protect my tendon from re-rupture.  Fair enough!! :)   He said he will order a brace for inside my shoe and in 2 weeks, can wear shoes with the brace.  So, On Tuesday, I head off to Columbus with my daughter for a Keith Urban concert.  Luckily she is 17 and can drive.  I’m thinking - this is great - first day out in the world crutchless!!  Unfortunately, it did not take long until my calf and foot ached terribly!  We had to walk very long distances - parking garage to hotel, hotel to arena, will call tickets at the other end of the arena, back to the front of the arena, up and down millions of steps to get to our seats, walk back to the hotel.  WOW, was I beat after that night!  I was very grateful that I found a piece of foam to put under my foot in the boot.  I still get heel pain and like dancing bunny said, it feels like your foot has no cushion.  And, in the morning - Take a shower without my shower chair!!??  Hadn’t thought about that :(   I was so scared, but was very careful and deliberate with all my steps and didn’t kill myself.  We did have a blast at the concert and I wouldn’t have missed it for the world.  We bought our tickets in December - who knew??   To make it worse, we also bought tickets for the Cleveland concert.  So, on Thursday - off we go to Cleveland and do it all over again.  It was definitely a pain pill night!!  But, again, we had a great time.  I ended up taking off work on Friday because I hurt so bad from all the walking.  I am babying it all this weekend.  Back to RICEing for sure.  I am very grateful to be walking, but know that putting in about 10 miles in the first few days was NOT what my Doctor intended!

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Alex Wong

July 14th, 2011

WOW - I was watching “So you Thing You can Dance”.  They announced that Alex just ruptured his other achilles tendon during a dance audition.  (He ruptured a tendon during last year’s season).  He was to be on the show next week as an Allstar.  How depressing!!!  I feel so bad for him!  We are all suffering, but at least my career does not depend on it.  Best wishes to Alex for a complete recovery.

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