Thursday, 26 August 2010

A tale of two physios

On Monday, I saw the NHS physio, assigned to my case, for the last time. I explained to her all that I had been doing in the pool, the stretches, the gym work and even the impromptu 2 mile run that I'd done last week.

I also told her that I still didn’t have the complete range of movement yet in my ankle. Her response was much the same as the last time I saw her 5 weeks ago. "It’s probably the metal work causing an obstruction" she said. Unlike last time, however, I wasn’t willing to accept this as the reason. In my opinion and that of the registrar and my private physio, it will be a good few months before I have that full range of movement.

I showed her my x-ray and she agreed that the pins were not the reason for the lack of a full range of movement. Because my operation had been performed in a different health authority to hers she didn’t have access to my x-rays, so it had only been speculation on her part. Relief all round! But it had being playing on my mind for 5 weeks!

At the end of the consultation, she said that she was pleased with my progress and that there was no more she could do for me over and above what had already been done.

This was excellent news and another milestone on the road to recovery. Her advice in those early days following the removal of the cast had been followed to the letter and I’m sure is one of the reasons why I’m making such good progress with my rehabilitation.

Later in the day I saw physio Kevin Bell at The Osborne Clinic. Amongst other things, Kevin had given me the go ahead to do a 24 minute routine the day before I was due to see him (3 minute warm up, 6 x (2 minute jog, 1 minute walk) and a 3 minute cool down). I had managed that with great ease after I walked the 10.5 mile Peter’s Pies 6 Tyne Bridges Challenge, walked 1.5 miles to the match, celebrated 6 goals, walked another 1.5 miles back to my car and finished up with my mini trampoline exercises.

At the end of the consulation with Kevin (who used to be one of Newcastle United’s physios incidentally) he decided to let me do some more running this week. This schedule started yesterday and involved a 3 minute warm up, 6 x (3 minute jog, 1 minute walk) and a 3 minute cool down. Tomorrow is a 3 minute warm up, 4 x (5 minute jog, 1 minute walk) and a 3 minute cool down. I also run on Saturday, finishing up on Monday with a 3 minute warm up, 2 x (15 minute jog, 1 minute walk) and a 3 minute cool down.).

Now if you’d told me 4 weeks ago, never mind 13 weeks ago when I broke my ankle, that I’d be running by August, I would never have believed you. I’ve always had it in my mind to be starting to run again by the end of October. When I was lying on the floor with a broken ankle on 23rd May 2010 I even thought that being able to run by January 2011 wouldn’t be too much of a didaster in terms of getting ready for USA 2011.

Last night’s session on the treadmill was very easy indeed. As with the impromptu 2 mile run last week, it left me wanting to do more. I’m, once again, following the physio’s guidance on this one and will be resisting the urge to run further and faster.

The one observation that I have so far is that once I get going on the treadmill the Paddy Power Bionic Ankle feels very comfortable and there is no sign of any pain or even the slightest twinge. I am running very slowly, however. As this running week progresses I’ll be increasing the speed ever so slightly each time.

As well as running this week, I’ll be doing the usual stretches and mini trampoline workout. I'm back!