This past week has been eventful to say the least. It marked 9 weeks since my surgery with a follow-up appointment with my doctor.
I was excited to go to my doctor’s appointment this week. I have been working hard in PT and on my own. I was having a conversation with my therapist the other day. She was telling me that she was extremely happy with my progress over the past nine weeks. I told her that I was doing everything that they were telling me to do…BUT I wasn’t ONLY doing it during therapy. Now don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t doing anything that I wasn’t supposed to be doing, I was just doing what I was supposed to be doing MORE OFTEN. As I said to my therapist, which she already knew too, if I only do the exercises that you have me do during the 1 hour session that I see you twice per week, where would I be on the comeback trail? Answer: A lost ball in high weeds.
I guess it helps that I do this for a living and I know what to do and when to do it. The secret to coming back from a knee replacement, or any type of injury, is doing the little extras that will make a big difference. Injuries are a part of life, whether you are an athlete getting injured in a game or a weekend warrior rolling the ankle off the sidewalk curb. It’s how you set your mind for the comeback that will help determine your success.
Talking to my doctor at my appointment this week, she was happy to see my progress. The strength is improving…The ROM is beyond where I’ve been in over 20 yrs. There continues to be swelling in and around the knee, which I was told is normal and can last upwards of 7-10 months. But again, doing the little things such as ice after workouts and elevation and ankle pumps during rest make a big difference.
My doctor asked me how long it took me before I returned to work. Answer: 5 weeks. There were two reasons for the question. First, we have to get into the planning stages for round two (the other knee). That day will come and having a ball park timeline is important for planning everything from rehab to personal schedule. The second reason for the question was she wanted to see what “could” happen when you are focused and motivated on your rehab. As she said to me, “Glenn, you get it” with regards to the importance of strength training, flexibility, and everything else that goes in to improving performance. I told her that “Fear is a great Motivator.” I know what it’s like to have poor strength and ROM in an arthritic joint and I don’t want to go back there. Some people will go through surgery or an injury and will not stick to the rehab routine or maybe do the minimum. If you do that, you can expect minimum results.
Whether it is for fitness, performance, or rehab…Have a plan; stick to that plan; and see the results.
My friend and colleague, John McCarthy will be hosting the Third Annual Psychology of Coaching Teams Conference at Boston University on May 26, 2011.
For an overview of information about the conference, please visit the following link, as this will direct you toward on-line registration. Please note that if you register on-line by MAY 23, 2011 — which is this TODAY — you will receive a discounted rate!
For specific information on this year’s conference, including information about the speakers and the day’s agenda, please visit the conference blog at the following link:
Yesterday was another good workout with the legs. Everyday I am feeling improvements in the strength levels of my lower body. As I have mentioned to many people during my rehab program, for many years I have been limited with my ROM. Now with increased motion, I found serious strength deficits at the new points of motion. It is exciting and frustrating at the same time. Exciting because of the new motion and frustrating because of the weakness. But the good news is that the strength is improving. That being said, yesterday’s workout is below:
Bike 10 minutes. The great thing here is that I have been able to lower the seat, bring the knee through a greater ROM.
Foam Roller and Tiger tail.
BW Squats 3×15.
Step-ups 3x15ea. Used a 12in. Box and focused on keeping hips level.
1 leg SLDL 3X15ea. Used a 20 lb DB.
Hip lifts w/ heels on bench 3×20. BW exercise that got the hamstrings firing.
All in all, it was another day of progress.
One treatment that I have been receiving in physical therapy recently which I have noticed has helped me a lot has been the Graston technique. It’s a technique that uses blade-like instruments to break up scar tissue and fascial restrictions to help the muscle function normally. Although it has been reported that people can experience minor discomfort during the treatment, I have not experienced any. What I have experienced, however, is improved ROM in the knee along with increased strength during exercise.
For more information, check out the Graston Technique website.
Looking back at my calendar, I noticed that my last update was at the beginning of the week. This week has been a busy one but a good one too. My PT has been progressing well. I had sessions on Monday and Wednesday at the facility, then I had my routine that I do on my own as well. Yesterday was an unplanned off day but it worked out great because it made today one of my best days yet.
Smart training, smart rehab, smart everything will work together to accomplish many objectives. My primary objective during this entire knee rehab is to be able to do things that will keep me moving forward. Doing stupid things will not accomplish that goal. During my rehab I have been working hard with my therapist and communicating with her everything that I do outside of our sessions in order to have a complete and comprehensive program. It has been working. The key to everything that you do is simple: Train Smart!
Bike 20 minutes (I’m “itching” to let go on the bike but again, I’m also focusing on staying smart.)
Stretch and Foam Roller
Step Ups 3×15
Lateral Step Ups 3×15
Jungle Gym Hip Lifts w/ 10 sec hold 3×5
Jungle Gym Leg Curls 3×15
Heel Lifts 3×15
Then I finished with some upper body and a cool down on the bike. It was a good way to end a very productive week.
I remember reading one of Coach K’s books some years ago that said successful people surround themselves around other people who want to be successful. Successful people want to keep being pushed to be better in what they do. It is also important to learn as much as possible from people because it will help you be better in what you do. That being said, I wanted to share a recent blog post from Mike Boyle. The post title is called “A day in the Life,” although it could adequately be called “The blue print for success.”
I’ve been fortunate to know Michael for many years. He is a friend and mentor. In fact, I am lucky enough to hold the title, “Mike’s First Intern.” I’ve learned a lot from Michael over the years and what he writes in this post is true to his form. These are teaching points that he actually follows, he’s not just writing about them.
And as he writes in his post, the secret to success is…there really is no secret. Do what you love to do, and do it well.
Today was another good day at therapy. It was challenging but it was good. The range of motion continues to improve from session to session. During my last measurement, my passive flexion was recorded at 120 degrees. And as I had mentioned in previous posts, 120 had not been seen in quite a long time. Along with my continued range of motion stretches, I have continued to work on improving my strength. Having a new joint is something that I am getting use to. Bringing the knee through the different motions that it can go through is also something that I am getting used to as well. That being said, I have started to implement some rotation movements into my rehab repertoire. All in all, I am happy with how I seem to be improving and I look forward to the continued improvements.
Massage and Stretching
Squats 3 x 10
Lunges 3 x 10
Step-ups 3 x 10
Side Step-ups 3 x 10
Step-downs 3 x 10
Balance Work :30 sec rounds
Here’s to an exciting weekend and continued improvements.