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Haha oh Dave, the brace will quickly become your best friend. I was fitted for mine last summer (6 months before surgery), and wore it while I was waitressing, running, gymming, etc. It gave me a chance to get used to it I guess (and it held me bum knee together). At first running with it felt incredibly awkward- the thing has some weight to it, so I found my "bad" quad would tire before my other one. You get used to it now though. I wear mine under jeans to school every day until the ice and snow melt around here. It is just part of me now... and yet... I can't wait to get rid of it!!!
Glad to hear you guys are doing well. I'm hitting the gym this afternoon for a little "jog"! The other day I did 5 x 2 minutes at 5.0mph. Improving!
My best friend? never!
The problem is, I'm not sure if it's ill-fitted or if I'm just whiney and hate it because it's a brace. I've been half wanting to call up the brace guy who I got it from and tell him his brace sucks and that he has to get me a better one. Have you ever worn it OVER your pants? I have PROBLEMS when I try to do this -- it slips and one of the buckles kind of rubs up against my other leg. But maybe I just have to suck it up and NOT wear it over my pants. I dunno, I think I'm just a whiney little ***** and I should just suck it up. That's my dilema right now anyway.
Bria, so right now (and how many weeks out from surgery are you again??) you only wear it out only if it's icey? Do you have any notion of how long you're going to have to work with it?
The guy who fitted mine for me told me not to wear it over my pants. I find it chafes my leg too, so I wear a sleeve under it (came with the brace) and wear that under my jeans. But ah well. I'm 11 weeks post-op, and when I saw the surgeon at 8 weeks, she said I could start weaning myself out of the brace on a day-to-day basis (just depending on what the weather was like). Basically, I'm allowed to ditch it (I don't wear it on the treadmill or at the gym) but I definitely don't have the confidence to do that yet!! My walk to class is about 15 minutes, so the brace is my security blanket haha.
Yesterday was my sixth month mark. When First had surgery I would have never imagined being as active as I am right now. So to all of you out there, if it makes any difference, You will get better. I'm 16, my surgen and pt doc's decided it would be best to take my recovery very slow to insure I could take all the time in the world to stregthen my legs, and body for soccer.So I didnt play this school seson, and I'm not playing in the current club season. I just got back from seeing my surgen and he said I can finally start to do "sports realated drills, to get back into the swing of things." he also talked about a month long agility course that's proven to lower the amounts of knee injurys in girls, in may, which will be my 8 month mark. But the most exciting thing he talked about was getting realeased at the end of May to start training all summer for next years soccer season. my question, is about the brace. do I have to wear it to play sports for the rest of my life??? I know for sure the first year back, but do any of you have and feedback on you experiences with wearing the brace while playing in your athletic activities??? And how did any of you play again without always thinking of your knee? especially when its in a brace!
I am 11 weeks post op with PT grafts ACLR and meniscus repair and I should be given the OK to start running next week. Any advice on how to start? I "stole" a couple of strides the other day and it felt awful. The knee felt fine, but the running motion felt very uncomfortable and unfamiliar. Other than just starting slow, did any of you do anything different to get that running form back into shape?
My PT had me start out by running backwards. I think that went for about a week. Can't remember the logic exactly, but I think it puts less stress on the ACL. I graduated to running forward the next week - mostly run/walk because I was so out of shape. Oh, and keep it to the soft surfaces and treadmills for several weeks. No road running!
And expect ice to be your best friend for a while.
My physio was very liberal with respect to how much jogging I was allowed/should do. It is really me that has held back because I just don't have the confidence yet. That said- I have been jogging a couple of miles every second day outside for the past couple of weeks. It is nice to be able to enjoy the springtime this year- last year my knee was all messed up! My knee doesn't hurt but it does feel different. I'm not sure when this will go away? I guess I would describe it as a tightness or something (better than loose!!!!).
Another question for you guys.. I still can't straighten my leg all the way back while standing, or if I do it feels weird. I know it won't go past a certain point because the graft is tight, but does anyone else have this "issue"?
If you are having trouble straightening you leg, you may have developed some scar tissue in your knee joint. The graft should be tight at first; but it shouldn't stay overly tight as you've stretched it over time.
My PT stressed straightening the leg past straight, more than bending it. This extension is extremely important in your ability to run or even walk without a limp. The inability to extend your knee joint fully will shorten the stride of that leg more than the healthy leg, causing a limp.
I would suggest that you stretch your knee to extend past straight for a couple of weeks, preferably under the supervision of a PT. If that doesn't help, you may need to have some scar tissue removed.
I RAN TODAY!! Woooooooooo!
I had my 3-month follow-up doctor visit today. He cleared me to run, followed closely by orders not to "do anything stupid." Went right to the gym and ran for the first time since Dec 1st, 2007. Baby-steps, as instructed. I did 90 seconds walking, 30 seconds jogging -- for a mile. Very excited.
I told my Doc about my various aches and pains. I'm wondering if others had a similar experience. At about 10 weeks, my leg started feeling .. well, not worse, but much more tender, more sore, on a regular basis, more swelling than previously. My hamstring spazzed out on me one day while walking for no apparent reason. Etc .. though no actual .. ACUTE or SHARP pain at all. The Doc told me I was fine and that I was just starting to use my leg after not having done so for a few months and my leg was putting up a fuss, which was to be expected .... and he said, "You know ... I did put an entirely new ligament in your knee...." 8)
I hope everyone else is healing well out there.
This reply goes to the original post, and anyone who has undergone ACL reconstruction. In January of 2003 I tore my ACL and partially tore my MCL as well. After waiting six weeks I had ACL reconstruction via an allograft (cadaver ligament). In June of 2005 I finished my first marathon and recently finished my eleventh marathon. I developed a website at www.michaelutt.com which has more details. I wore my leg brace until I finished PT and have never really used it since that time while skiing running or doing anything physical. What has worked for me may not work for others, just wanted to let people know what has worked for me.
I am about 4.5 months post op ALCR and meniscus repair and I have been running now 35+ miles a week, albeit pretty slowly by my standards (a minute per mile slower than normal). I have no pain and no swelling and everything seems to be going very well for me. I even have my sights on a September marathon, but I do have a question to those who have been through this before. I recently ran into a couple of people in my neighborhood who told me that they saw me running through the neighborhood and that I am still limping when I run. This was kind of shocking because I feel no pain when I run, so I have no idea why I am doing this. Did I develop a bad habit or am I still missing muscles that atrophied during recovery? I guess my stride is a little shorter on my repaired leg, but it is not because I am hurting. Anyone have any advice or ideas what I can do to get the form back in shape? Do I need to stretch better so I can get full extension on my stride? I am probably 3 to 4 degrees off of full extension compared to my other leg. I have no limp at all when walking. What did you all do to get it all back? TIA
Russhater, I've had almost the EXACT experience. I'm about 1 week behind you .... 4 months and 1 week post-op, ACL replacement. I'm not quite running the amounts you are -- but I likely wasn't quite the runner you were post-surgery either. But I'm running a decent amount each week and, as an example, ran 2 miles yesterday -- straight through (no stopping, walking, etc.) and really had zero swelling, no pain. T'was all good.
A few weeks ago, when I just started running in earnest, my wife noticed me running in the park and ... I believe her words were "Hon, you're kind of running like a 'tard." I too didn't realize I was running weird. I'm done with PT, but went back to my PT guy, he filmed me running on a treadmill (just on his little digital camera) and showed me. It was VERY obvious that I wasn't running correctly. But just SEEING it, I was able to correct it -- just being concious of what I was doing.
I would recommend having someone film a few seconds of you on a treadmill, from behind. You should be able to see whatever it is you're doing and make mental corrections.
i'm 26, i used to be very active, was running a lot, then developed exercise-induced compartment syndrome in my legs. after talking to people about the surgery, i decided that it was a bad idea to try. this completely depressed me because i couldn't run anymore. i pulled myself outta that and started biking and getting active in other ways, only to tear my ACL while playing ultimate frisbee (never realized how full-contact that could get!). anyway, i had my ACL surgery on june 5th, and i've been in a total funk ever since. i was wondering if any of you experienced this. i'm so frustrated and depressed, and i'm sick of pretending to be cheerful/optimistic about it when people ask how my knee is
that sounds terrible of me, but i can't help it. i've lost all muscle tone in my legs and my range of motion is awfultrying to reach 90 degrees has me close to tears and i'm not normally a wuss. i just started a new job and am living in a new city and it takes me a ridiculous amount of time to shower. ARGH. how did you all get through this?? the physical and the mental...
-blue chick in miami...
I'm really sorry to hear about you injuries.
I remember feeling exactly how you feel. I'm 16, hurt my leg playing soccer and had my surgery done early last september. I'm telling from experience that you've already done one of the best things you can do by joining this site. It's crazy how much talking to people who have been through the same thing helped me. Sharing your stories, hearing about people who have recovered. There were times throughout my entire recovery where i was in huge funks. But when I was, I came to this sight and read all about poeple's recoveries and it reassured me that i was going to be fine. You see the thing is, as long as the recovery is. Have no fear. YOU WILL HEAL. And in most cases, be as strong, or stronger than you were before!! I am. Just take your recovery seriously. Do everything your doctors tell you. You'll be fine and back in no time. (Well, no time was 9 months for me.) Oh jeeze. I totally remember the first week i was in PT, seriously about to cry because he was grinding my leg to the ground trying to get it straight. i remember feeling hopeless because I had one very muscular soccer-leg.....and one flab of nothing. DONT WORRY! I promise you it all comes bock. That goes for range of motion, everything. Don't give up. It all comes back! Also, don't compare yourself to other people who have had similar sugeries. That was probably a big thing I did wrong. Everybody is different, it took me a good couple months to be able to do a perfect straight-leg lift, and I was working really hard every day. When it took another girl on my team who had the surgery about the same time, like not even a month. But what I was going to say, was that first week in pt is when I realized this recovery wasn't going to be what i thought. All last year, Physically, emotionally, and mentally it pushed me to all of my limits as an athlete. But it made me so much stronger. Both as a an athlete, and a person. You see, the thing is, I believe 100% everything happens for a reason. It defiantly takes a very strong person to get through any kind of prolonged rehab. But I don't think anyone would have to go through all of this unless for 1, they could handle it, or for 2, they were going to get something good out of it. So hang in there!!! You'll be fine. You will heal. and showering will become easier.
The entire recovery is about baby steps. And I mean baby steps. lifting your leg, getting muscle back, walking, running, jumping will all become huge accomplishments. make sure you reconize each one so when things seem like there going slow, you can be like remember when I couldnt even straighten me leg?? I think of that all the time and it makes me work so much harder than anyone else in practice.
I wish you the best of luck!!!!