Thursday, October 25, 2018

A Milestone

This evening I reached a milestone, yes, a significant event in my life. Today the wheel chair ramp was removed from our garage that provided access to the house.

I haven't used my wheel chair for almost a week and decided if I am to continue with my progress I need to cut all ties with the wheels. It's been difficult standing and walking for long periods of time when cooking or trying to help feed the zoo. I have gradually built up my strength and endurance and felt it was time to literally take the next step.
I have also started Physical Therapy outside the home. The local company Fysical Therapy and Balance Centers has been an interesting experience. After an initial evaluation I started in on getting the ankle to loosen up, extending the range of motion to make walking more normal. I laughed, my walking more normal? Well, I'll give it a go. 
After a few rounds of various exercises with heat treatments mixed in, I moved on to a treadmill.  Not your typical treadmill, this was an anti-gravity machine.
This nice young lady brings me out a pair of shorts that look like a divers wet suit. There was a zipper around the waste and I was totally confused. I asked if I was diving for sunken treasure, the two young assistants just gave a weird look, the forty year old started laughing and motioned for me to start heading towards the machine.

Once zippered in, the machine calculated my weight. The trainer dialed in 30% of my body weight and then the machine aired up. It was a strange feeling lifting off the treadmill and then just slightly settling back down. The timer was set for just ten minutes on my initial go, and off I went. My gait was 'normal' and I felt no pain.
The next machine was a recumbent stepper. I really liked this machine. You get the cardio with the stepper and arm rail movement. Again, no pain, easy on my right hip and very smooth. I think I did five or ten minutes on this one to end my session for the day.  I'm looking forward to getting back on this machine and really working out.


While the first workout was a blast and I was really excited to move forward, the next few days I felt like I got hit by a truck. Once the adrenaline wore off the muscles were really sore. Both feet hurt and my legs ached like I walked for miles. I know it will feel better after some time and the workouts will keep me moving forward. I guess it's a reminder that its not all unicorns and rainbows. One day at a time...


Chris said...

Congratulations on leaving the chair behind, sir! Wonderful news!

Jim and Sandie said...

Super progress. Getting rid of the chair is huge. You made my day.

Unknown said...

That's great Gary! After my jump accident and before the hip replacement happened, I remembered friends that had similar and they limped horribly. I was determined not to have that limp. I told the physical therapist that goal and we worked on it and after that and as well as after the replacement, I still have no limp. People are surprised when they find out and usually state something along the lines of not noticing a limp. Good job on getting the chair gone and hitting some good therapy, those are great machines!

Gary said...

Thanks all!

Yes the company actually picks up the chair on Wednesday, cant wait to wave goodbye.

Unfortunately due to the initial hip (1986) and revision (2009) my right leg is a bit shorter than my left. I deal with the Trendelenburg gait and really need to build the hip muscles back up. I think it's from putting off the initial surgery for a year back in 85-86 that caused most of the problems. This too can be fixed with hard work and therapy.