5 more

Vegging while watching football (ND looking great vs Syracuse; 21-7 at the half but..lots of game left)

PT, 5 mile walk on a convoluted course. Mile 1: slow, GREAT. Mile 2: mild discomfort in the left hip; then the last 3..sort of rough but not stabbing. Kind of sore-like. The “hanging from the bar” stretch afterward felt GREAT.

Another week

Back: well, ok; minor pain comes and goes; down to 1 naproxen, twice a day. It is tolerable.

Workout: weights/pt first; usual pull ups (some with knees forward), push ups (4 sets of 25 flat..challenging) full PT, then bench: 10 x 134, 3 sets of 5 x 154, curls: 3 sets of 10. high incline: 1 set of 10 x 94 trying for more ROM.

Walk: start slow, pick it up. Commuter walk. That is about it.
Voted. Long line: 20 or so when I got there, along with 3 with poll workers and 8 actively voting.

Moving forward..again

Today: weight 197.6 before swimming, 196.5 after. The swim itself: usual 600 of side/back, 400 of swim drill/swim with fins, then a very lame 250 swim, 250 pull in 9:40. I gave up; did 100 side, 100 back, 100 fins then finished alternating pulls, swim ..enough to get to 2200.

I need to swim more, and now without those morning doctor’s appointments, I might get to.

Then came the walk; tightness on the outside of the hip prior..so I went out at 15:40..then picked it up to 14:20 and then 13:30. That is the way to do it, I think.

I have a few days to get to the 100 mile for the month mark, something I have NOT done in about 2 years. This stabbing glute pain was vicious ..a very tough opponent to overcome, or at least keep at bay.

I am not in rehab..

Commentary: I’ve had injuries in the past: rotator cuff impingements, knee surgery, (5 of them, 4 on the right knee), achilles tendonitis, etc. I’ve “recovered to full strength” (sort of) from these.

This back issue is different: it is chronic. (vertebrae slipped forward: neurogenic claudication caused by foraminal stenosis caused by isthmic spondylolisthesis. ) That is, chronic stress fractures in my pars (back of the spine) has caused my L5 vertebrae to slip forward, narrowing the canal (stenosis) impinging my L5 nerve root (foraminal: below the spinal cord) causing pain while walking.

In February of this year, things had gotten so bad that a .2 mile walk home caused a great deal of stabbing back pain; when I tried to walk in the fall, I managed 1, .5, .4 mile segments.

What turned it around was going to the doctor, finding out it was my back, and then doing back therapy and modifying my behavior (more later); I deleted some exercises, modified many others, etc.

And so, I am doing daily walks (sometimes 2 times a day) of 1-5 miles, sometimes fast, (10:40 mpm), most of the time medium (13-14:30 mpm), some slow (hiking, 16 minute miles for commuter walks).

I am about 22-25 miles a week; I would have found this unimaginable this February.

BUT…yeah, I have a long distance walking history (marathons and beyond).

I was referred to a surgeon and surgery was discussed; what I was eventually told was “no need for it right now; you’ll know when you need me” and:

This isn’t my doctor, but this was the message I got.
I have a chronic condition that may get better, but pain-free just is not my destiny. Not 100 percent pain free, 100 percent of the time. I need to aim for “low enough pain to be pleasant.” I have a condition to be managed, not something to be healed from.

And yes, I can tell when I need to bail from a walk; I did so last week. Basically, it is pain at the start that is uncomfortable and does not go away.

Today’s workout PT, pull ups (sets of 5 singles, couple of sets of 5, enough to get to 50 plus one negative), push ups (4 sets of 25 flat! That is good for me; focused on no radiating pain)

Deadlifts: low: 10 x 134, 10 x 184, 10 x 228, 8 inch: 10 x 260 (felt good..all of them)

high incline: 3 sets of 10 x 94 Swiss bar, getting lower each time

bench: 2 sets of 10 x 134 legs up

Then a morning walk (2 miles), commuter walk (1 mile) Both walks were outstanding, though I was sore by 6 pm

Note: I attempted to cut from 2 naproxen two times a day, to 1, two times a day.

Another week

Monday: PT, weights, 2 mile walk, 1 mile commuter walk. Felt it a bit during the day, but the walk was basically pain free, best in a while.

Weights: 50 reps plus 2 penalty reps pull ups, push ups: 2 sets of 25 flat, 25 incline (harder than I thought), 20 incline, 20 flat.

Bench: 10 x 134, 4 x 160, 2 x 160, 2 x 160 (little rest), 4 x 160, 4 x 160

curls: 3 sets of 10. high incline: 2 sets of 10 x 95

Tuesday: doctor day for B, so I opted for PT and a walk; it was raining pretty hard. Walk was slightly rough (minor hip pain after a bit, but very minor, and went away at times)

My after walk PT included chest taps and a 3 minute plank (on forearms)

Hiking again

Full PT (though I forgot some rotator cuff stuff…did some of it though
Deadlifts: 10 x 134 10 x 184 low, 10 x 254 4 inch, 10 x 270 8 inch.
I just can’t get the right hip height with the low grip.

Then off to Forest Park Nature Center for the outer loop: 1:08 …no stopping for pain. I did have mild discomfort in the outside of my hip at times..downhills were sooooo slow.

I’ve progressed from stopping with pain and cursing the pain to complaining about being so damned slow. My walking PR is 48 minutes, though 55-60 was more typical…”in the day.”

But the last time and the time before that.

College football marathon

Well my Navy upsetting Houston did not pan out. ND beat UNLV 44-21.
Workout: I passed on swimming and hiking, and used my “back budget” for a 5 mile walk.

First mile was my slowest and I did encounter some traffic. And there was some win.
Some soreness in my left hip/IT band.

Note: this video describes me almost perfectly. I need to work on that “tail tuck.

Another week..

And I am starting to get caught up on things..sort of. B is still having pain, but is doing better.

Today: I went through PT with pull ups and push ups (5 sets of 20 ) mixed in; I have an exercise to add. It is a prone pelvic tilt to counter the way my tail bone tilts back. The pull ups: 8 sets of 5 singles, 10 singles (2 bad reps), and 2 penalty reps.

high incline: 10 x 95, 99, 105, curls 3 sets of 10

Then a 2 mile walk; finished it all by 7:40 (everything, including a bathroom break takes 2 hours).

Then: a commuter walk home over lunch.
I look somewhat smaller than a few months ago. Weight yesterday: 196.8 before swimming, 195.8 afterward. Within 10 lb of where I want to be.

Aging: friends and loved ones

Axiom: the longer your life, the more friends and loved ones will suffer from ailments of various kinds, and yes, die.
I’ve lost 3 good running friends from 2008-2015 or so (all I ran with, all who could beat me) and now another one has lung cancer.
I don’t know the stage (discovered by biopsy) but even best case is 70 percent survival rate in 5 years; worst is 5 percent.

My bestie also had cancer, but hers is “the best cancer to have if you must have cancer.” I took her to her biopsy.

My wife is recovering from hand/wrist surgery (should restore functionality of her hand) but, well, only 11 days out and yes, there is still pain.

My back issues: not functional; I can manage my chronic conditions (knee, shoulder , back) by not being stupid.

But, well, here is a vow to make time for friends and to enjoy them while we still have each other.