May 26 2015
I forgot to check back in here in February on my actual 1 year anniversary, but wanted to leave a brief note about my recovery. Hopefully this is will be some positive inspiration for those of you currently suffering through an achilles rupture!
I’d say I’m fully recovered at this point and probably in the best shape I’ve been in years at this point. Rehab exercise transitioned into a renewed focus on staying in shape to prevent another injury like this and I’ve managed to make exercise and stretching part of my weekly routine. I consider that probably the only “benefit” of the injury, that it was a wake up call about needing to keep my body in better condition.
I’ve gotten into road biking as part of my rehab and am now addicted. I have another metric century coming up this weekend in fact. I have also resumed my other favorite activities, including hiking, surfing, skiing and snowboarding this past winter. Snowboarding was how I injured my achilles originally so I was still sightly nervous about wearing soft boots versus the hard boots of skiing, but when I finally tried it at the end of the ski season it was a non-issue. The only activity I don’t do much of anymore is running, but that is mainly because I’ve found cycling to be so much easier on the rest of my body that I’ve lost interest in running.
Functionally, my injured calf is still significantly weaker than my good one… I’d estimate around 80% in terms of strength. Endurance is good and once I got to being able to do around 8-10 one legged calf raises I gave up on pushing strength as the returns seemed pretty marginal and I can do everything I did before with seemingly no performance impact. I haven’t done calf raises in months and will probably check to see if I can still do the 3 sets of 8 that I had set as my six month goal last year.
Overall, life is back to normal and I’ve moved on to the point of not even noticing my achilles anymore or having any issues. The achilles I do think about is actually my good one, which has lingering pain of the tendonitis which was the precursor of my tear. I’ve half-heartedly tried to do some exercises like calf raises with weight to strengthen it, but it is a low concern right now.
Those of you in the early stages, there is a light at the end of the tunnel and you will be as good as new in what feels like no time!