Saturday, June 21, 2014

Water Works

It's been five full days since I got my epidural on Monday, and I have come a long way since.

In physical therapy on Wednesday, I did my first bit of exercise: two sets of 10 wall squats and two sets of ten rows with a bungee cord while sitting on a balance ball. Plus, I did about one mile of walking, not all at once, but spread throughout the day.

I woke up on Thursday feeling very sore from this exercise. Ha. Muscle atrophy much? So I took the day off. I did some walking, though. Just about a half mile... enough to get some shopping done. :)

Yesterday (Friday), I got into the pool. My physical therapist says that actual swimming is a no-no (it compresses the L5S1 disc even more than cycling or swimming), but I am allowed to tread water and do a little water jogging. So I decided to do 20 minutes of really easy water jogging. Maybe I should call it water slothing. I was moving sloooow.

Today I did some actually water running, though. I strapped on the flotation belt and did 30 minutes straight of pretty high intensity running. I concentrated on trying to keep up a high cadence (I can only manage about 140-150, but that's a good start). I was sweating and breathing heart and--best part--there was no pain.

I can still barely manage even half a calf raise with my bad leg, but I am more determined than ever. Being able to get a real workout in the pool was so encouraging. I realized just how stressed out I was about losing my fitness and having to start from absolutely nothing when I start running again. I'm hugely relieved to find out that I will at least be able to maintain cardiovascular fitness. When I start running again, I'm going to have noodle legs... but at least I won't have noodle legs and pitiful lungs. I'll take what I can get.
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I follow up with my primary doctor and the epidural doctor on Monday morning, and then I have physical therapy on Tuesday. I'm hoping that my work (and patience!) this week earns me some good reviews from them all!

Happy trails, friends.

2 comments:

  1. I'm sure it must feel nice to be able to do *something* physical without pain. My poor friend who had the herniated disc last year basically spent like 2 months on her back. Hopefully it will just get better from here!

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    1. It felt AMAZING. It really really calmed me down. I guess you could say that I'm addicted to exercise? Psychologically dependent on working up a sweat? A neurotic nut case? Check. Check. Check.

      My heart goes out to your friend. I hope she's back to herself at this point.

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