Wednesday, January 22, 2014

The Long Road Back

Bit by bit, my life is returning to normal, or at least, my new normal.

I've stopped taking post-surgical pain medications, although I'll probably be taking Alleve for inflammation for another week or two.

I started working again last week, on a part-time basis, but it was a bit too much.  In particular, coming to the office on Friday was more than I was ready for.  So, I spent the weekend resting a fair amount.  On Monday, I worked 7 hours from a coffee-shop close to home.  Tuesday, I worked for 6.5 hours.  Today, I came to the office again.

The healing is proceeding at its own pace.  The six holes that were punched in my gut for the laparoscopic robot are healing, but not one of them is fully healed 16 days after the surgery.  The incision by the navel will probably require a couple more weeks to heal completely.

Other than walking when the weather is agreeable, I haven't really done anything physical.  Even if I get firewood for our wood stove, I carry one log per hand and make multiple trips to the garage.  Normally, I'd bring in 8-10 logs at a time in a carrying sling.

Tonight, my wife is going to go to CrossFit after work.  I'm going to go along, but I won't do the workout.  I think I'll probably put on my gym clothes, but spend some time stretching, foam rolling, and doing other mobility work.  Maybe I'll play with some very light dumbbells.  My target for even a very easy CrossFit workout is sometime next week or the week after.  And, some movements, like squats, deadlifts, box jumps, rowing, rope jumping, etc., are simply off the table until I feel a bit more healed.

This weekend, I'm hoping to ski for a little bit.  My goal is perhaps two hours on groomed intermediate runs.  Nothing challenging at all.  I am hoping to return to teaching skiing on 2/1.  However, if the snow conditions improve dramatically, and the conditions allow for off-piste skiing, I'm likely to wait one extra week before returning to teaching.

I wish I was here telling a story about deadlifting 400 pounds months before the doc said it would happen.  Or, that I'd been bump skiing on steep terrain, or doing some snowshoe running at a 6:00 minute per mile pace.  I know that 10 years ago, I would have tried to do stuff like that.  Hopefully, at this point in my life, I'm smart enough to avoid doing reckless things that might impede my recovery.

The fitness will return.  I will return to skiing.  I am still easing my way back into work.

This time around, I'm really trying to let my body tell me what it's ready for, rather than pushing my body too far, too soon.

There are still some side effects from the surgery that will take months to resolve.  While I'm impatient, I know this is the case.  So, if some parts of my body can't recover in less than a few months, I'm not going to try to force myself to return to normal activities in just a few weeks.

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