Posted by: tatyana | July 16, 2014

Around 14 weeks

I haven’t posted for a while. Things are progressing as expected, I guess.

I am almost at 14 weeks now. Physical therapy is still going wonderfully and working very well. My walking is acceptable, but a slight limp remains (due to lack of strength.) After about two weeks of walking in 2 shoes, with a progressively increasing distance, every day I was happy to feel some soreness in my calf (took it as a confirmation that I still had some muscles there that worked, or at least tried to), but then I noticed some pain that was located strangely on the top of my foot, not in the AT area, and was persistent. I thought of it as a part of awakening of my leg as a whole to daily activities and emerging of all those tiny muscles and connections that were doomed to passivity while hidden in the boot. But once I mentioned that to my PT, she performed some intolerably painful move (a few times!) and it felt as if she released something in my ankle area. My walking immediately became unrestricted and painless, I could not believe it! She said it was a problem that was clearly caused by prolonged immobility – the ligaments that connect the leg and the foot became “rusty” and had trouble moving/stretching normally. She demonstrated the process on the skeletal model – all makes sense. Right away I thought that if I started PT sooner, I wouldn’t have developed such rustiness. But the PT didn’t agree with that and just said that a body response to trauma is highly individual and this was the way my body chose to deal with my ATR.

With this problem out of the way, I am progressing nicely on the anti gravity treadmill, walking briskly 70% of my weight, doing 30 single heel raises also with 70% weight (still holding on the sides of the machine for support.) Double heel raises are easy now, with regular gravity, equal weight distribution between the injured/uninjured sides, and no support. I find single heel raises more challenging mentally than physically. It is difficult for me to wrap my mind around the idea that I am not able to control a part of my own body. I stand facing the wall, give the command to my injured leg to rise up… up… up? and it doesn’t obey! I quickly test the healthy side and yes, everything works perfectly, but then why didn’t it work on the ATR side? I try again, still nothing. I can’t get over this weird feeling that I am not in control, what is wrong with me? Therefore, every free minute I can find is spent on attempting single heel raises, but so far I can manage only a few millimeters… PT is happy though and she still calls it a progress and promises that by week 16 it won’t be an issue at all. We’ll see.

In addition to two PT sessions per week, I do Pilates once a week (never tried before, but like it now), tried yoga once a week (which I always disliked and still could not tolerate), so I skip yoga and work out in the gym instead. PT gave me a clearance for using almost all machines. I was planning to wear a boot to walk to the gym for extra protection, but actually wore it just once. I am not completely paranoid about watching my step anymore and can handle the distance (0.7 miles one way) with ease. Swelling by the end of the day is minor, but I continue icing for 15 minutes each day.

I am giving a second chance to Kinesio tape. First time around, I haven’t  detected any difference. These days, I am more active, so decided to see whether it would really help me walk. I will certainly report later.

Happy healing everyone!


Many people love the “2 up, 1 down exercise: rise up on 2 feet (balanced equally, or weighted as much as you can on the injured side, still going full height), then shift full (or less) weight to injured leg and descend slowly. “Rinse and repeat.”

This gives a challenging eccentric exercise to that calf and AT,but one that most ppeople can do before they can do 1-leg HRs. And if it’s too much with 100% FW, you can apply less, either by going 2-footed or by meaning on a table.
Toe walking can also sometimes come earlier than 1LHRs.

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