Like many others, I like to do something symbolic around New Year's Day to suggest a change for the better. Today I did not do much of anything, and certainly nothing symbolic. I tried to talk myself into going to the gym but did not get there. In my defense, I am still recovering from a cold and I have three cold sores on my lips, which does not make me persona grata anywhere I can think of.
But here it is, January 2012 and I need to take a look at myself. Look back at 2011, see where I've been and where I am headed.
Some signs of progress: It doesn't hurt to drive any more. It still hurts to get in and out of a car. My left knee generally does not hurt. Every now and then there is a bit of pain at night but mostly it is just stiff. Very nice. I feel discomfort when I have to stand for any length of time. My legs both feel a kind of tension, and uncomfortable tension, and often my right knee or my right hip will hurt as well.
I do time in physical therapy three days a week. I bike fifteen minutes, isokinetic. Then step (on a sitting-step machine) fifteen minutes, at level four. Then leg press: four sets of twelve with both legs, then four sets of twelve with one leg, 3.5 lbs for both, 2 lbs for one leg. Then the isokinetic leg kicks, 8 sets of ten, followed by curls- four sets of twelve, then extensions, four sets of twelve, and finally a seven minute stretch of both knees, all at 12.5lbs. Finally I land on the table, where Chuck, the therapist, pushes and pushes both knees. We're gradually softening the muscle, working to get the legs to zero extension. What a dream! Will this spring be the time it happens??
When I am not sick, I also go to Aqua classes three days a week. I am considering doing more work in the gym either on the Aqua days or the therapy days, focusing on arms and aerobic activity for now.
I am no longer taking pain meds. I was taking one vicodin per night but when I ran out the PA at the surgeon's office left a message that they don't normally continue addictive substances longer than I've been on it, that I should go to OTC NSAIDs. Never mind that I can't take NSAIDs. I get tired of having to remind them of that little detail. So I'm off all pain meds unless I take a bit of tylenol now and then. I am still waking up with my right leg in pain for hours, but not every night. Fortunately. I seem to be sleeping more hours between wakeups.
Not much of a report but I think it will be helpful to review later, when some of the remaining issues have been resolved.