Pain is an every day companion, but it also means that I am working. Each therapy session now includes more exercises and more weight added to the workout. On non-therapy days I am cleared for a full 25 minutes on the stationary bike, ten minutes backward walking and some isometrics. Yes I said a full 25 minutes! On the pro front, Cancellara is a stud, Evans (Cadel that is) may not be the total loser I thought. The other Evans? Let his last picture post speak for itself.
We are starting to cook with gas! Although my pedal stroke is ridiculously bad, I am able to push the pedals on the bike at therapy around in what some would consider a circle. we have added additional exercises including leg presses. (I was laughing at the weight levels, but they would not let me do more.) The Dr. says I am structurally sound enough to go after some hard work and only limited by the amount of pain I am willing to take. I could say my pain is only limited by the amount of medication I can take, but then where is the fun in that. My goal is to do an October ride with BWR. It should be no different than usual, slow and off the back! Keep posting and let me know when and where you are racing.
Therapy is starting to take on tones of training now. Work on weight machines, squats and core work using a ball (think Cyclo-core). Albeit the weight levels are low and the squats are against a wall, but it is a start. The work combined with the pain factor put me on the edge of exhaustion. A humbling experience, but in a way the challenge keeps me asking for more. Perhaps it is something else learned from cycling with BWR.
Is going backwards progress? It is when you are on a treadmill. A new exercise today as I slowly walked backwards on the treadmill. This works the hamstring which is what is needed to keep the leg aligned properly and to get full extension. I will admit that after the leg raises, isometrics, stretches and e-stim, I am pretty tired. It feels like I am learning to walk again. I can't imagine what Ed went through with his hip. It is great to hear from the therapists and others in the community, "Hey, I saw your teammates".
Went back to the full set of exercises and a new EPO version of the Frankenstein leg. This time, halfway through the e-stim muscle contraction, the current increases so that the muscle does a hyper contraction. Freaky watching your leg contract so hard you can see the muscle tissue. Post workout swelling was not too bad. Rest day tomorrow and back at it Friday.
Swelling is still an issue, but the work continues. Following some joint manipulation (and I'm not talking the canibus variety, although that may help with the pain) I did the Frankenstein leg. That's where they attach electrodes to the muscles and set the machine to fire off every thirty seconds. As the machine fires you add your own muscle contraction as you do a leg lift. Recovery is much like training in that it is all about the quads!
Bill stopped by to show me the Fisher Cronus, sweet, and just the motivation I need to stay on track.
9/4/09 Had my knee drained of blood today. Weird watching as the Dr. filled several syringes. It has been a long couple of days, but the pain is finally subsiding and I can start again on the isometric exercises.
Two steps forward five back. After a great day of therapy on the knee, it decided to go wilson on me (swell up like a basketball). Less than three hours after walking crutch and limp free I was reduced to full crutches and in the worst pain yet in this whole ordeal. Time to HTFU and get this thing moving in the right direction again.