Finding balance

PT, walk, more PT, rest, swim.

As I started the walk, I knew I just “didn’t feel it.” It was wet, damp pavement and I decided to try a different course and do 2 one mile walks. But as I approached a mile, while I didn’t feel outstanding, I didn’t feel horrible either. So I decided “get it over with” and the last 0.4 miles were kind of rough..not terrible, but very mild pain…and at times, when I focused on posture and locking the lumbar, the pain darn near went away..only to come back when I relaxed too much and slumped a little.

The second mile was actually a bit faster than the first so there was no great power loss.

Then came more PT then rest, then swim.

600 of side/back; raced the slower freestylers while doing these and held my own..even won.

200 of front/swim

200 of fins: 75 drill, 25 swim

Then I did a weird set of 200 hard, 200 pull times 3, resting just enough to check my time and make the equipment change:

3:37, 7:30, 11:11, 14:58, 18:41, 22:36

Swim segments: 3:37, 3:41, 3:43

Pull segments: 3:53, 3:47, 3:55 (these were recovery intensity)

Post swim: 203.4 lb. Ok for after the weekend.

Reality: I think that weight loss would help me a great deal. I’d probably feel great at 185…even 195 would be better.

So many variables

Yeah, I am obsessed about my back/glute injury recovery.

I am keeping track of my progress and it appears that, over time, I’ve extended the amount I walk in a week from about 6 miles a week to 13-14. And my 1.1 mile course used to take me 16:20 or so..now takes me 15:20. That is undeniable progress since March. But it seems so..incremental.

Then again, this physical therapist talks about going from 3/4 mile to 3 miles over a 2 year period.

So, I am sort of trapped…not bad off enough to really need surgery but not really close to where I would like to be.

It appears that my “I need something to improve on” fix will have to come from swimming; currently it is 3 times a week, and maybe I can get to 5 times a week. It is looking as if my line up will be “swimming, lifting, walking, PT” with the idea that I do something every day, but not too much of it. Maybe a 1-2 mile therapeutic walk over lunch hour, swim and lift/PT in the morning?

Back to today

Morning: PT, 2 mile walk.

I torched my glute/back? by those belt squats yesterday; this “lean back” doesn’t work for me. The leaning forward does better and limiting my depth.

But the first mile felt ok (13:40-ish) and I said “ok, half-mile more” and then “ok, just get two” and that is what I did. But it was pouring and I think that I had forgotten about tying to walk faster. But it was “good enough” and more than I expected.

11 am: after chores and errands, to the pool for 2200 yards. Warm up 600 (raced Mike a bit) with side and back.

200 of 25 front kick, 25 swim

200 of 25 drill, 25 swim (fins)

1000: alternate 250 of swim, pull 18:23: 4:41, 9:14, 13:56, 18:23 or: 4:41, 4:42 swim, 4:33, 4:27 pull.

200 cool down (back, side)
I am getting better. NOT good, but better.

Half a step back

A little sore so I did the old “1 mile at a time” thing.

PT with 1 mile after banded walks, and 1 more mile after the clamshell series. Still did most of it..and some chest taps.

I wouldn’t say that these were bad walks, but I was in the “pre-pain” mode; still ok but wondering when it would go. Ok, I’ve had a LOT worse but I’ve had better too.

Then I worked on my paper, and went to the pool at 11 am for 2000 yards:

600 of my usual side/back warm up (100 each)

200 of my usual front kick/free

Then I did 200, 200, 100, 100, 50, 50 with 50 back in between plus 30-50 seconds rest; this totaled 1000 yards:

3:32, 3:28, 1:41, 1:40, 47, 47. I was soooo close to going under 1:40.

200 pull in 3:36 (easy).

Weight: 203.8 after swimming.

Note: I did feel the back/butt just a bit during swimming; didn’t feel it at all on Monday. I wonder if the longer pool feels better?

Shoulders were ok.

July 4 2022

Part I: the YMCA pool was open so I drove there and..well, evidently the swim team started at 6. So I was shunted into another lane and even we ended up circle swimming. I ended up beating up my hand on the lane line..it was a bit disconcerting to see so many next to me (yes, they were faster; a lot faster)

I made the best of it..and glad I didn’t know in advance else I wouldn’t have gone.

200 warm up (side, 50 back, 50 easy free)

200 of 50 kick, 50 swim with fins.

500 in 11:14 (zoo)

200 of 50 kick, 50 swim with fins)

100 (interrupted as someone wanted to circle…it was that kind of day

500 in 10:52

200 fins (some kick)

100 in 2:05 (damn, the 50 meter pool is long)

Then most of my PT, including shoulders

Then a hike: first part was on the single track wooded trail, second half had some asphalt, mostly single track woodchip/ grass

The single track: I did have to do some very quick stretches (20-30 seconds) but things cleared up when I was on flat asphalt or gravel. The back is better; that is undeniable. But the reality is that there will be a lot of “activity management.”

Swim: went very well, in terms of body and pain (shoulder and back).

Note: the swim itself went much better than a month ago; I have improved in swimming. But I thought I’d try for a mile straight..just not ready for that yet. I’d get chopped up at Barton Springs.

Like voting: not all unicorns and rainbows

It has now been two weeks since my injection. So the report: definitely better, but not perfect.

Example: I walked home from the gym without fear of pain; I wasn’t limping when I got home. I can handle six 2 mile walks per week. Less pain when doing the crawl.

BUT some pain is there (in dulled form) and I have to mind my posture. And it is still 40 minutes of PT every danged day… that is not going to change.

I can sympathize with those who hate working out at all; my PT is like that: unrewarding but necessary.

And voting is like that. You aren’t going to get everything you want. If you get even a 1/3 or even a 1/4 of what you want, you chose wisely, especially if that fraction is from your most important items.

Workout notes: started my PT late and didn’t walk before..didn’t want to walk in the rain after.

Swim:

600 of the usual alternating side and back

200 of the usual front kick, free

200 in 3:38 with 50 back (too slow but I had no one to chase)

200 in 3:32 with 50 back (better)

100 in 1:42 with 50 back

100 in 1:42 with 50 back

50 in 0:48 with 50 back

50 in 0:47 with 50 back

200 pull in 3:36 (easy effort)

Weight: 205 afterward (probably bloated again)

12 days out

12 days from the injection. What I notice:

  1. day to day activities cause far less glute pain. No more limping home from the office, gym, etc.
  2. Walking: I have not been able to extend my distance, but the level of pain is well down; 2 miles is still reasonably pleasant; before, I had to start pushing through moderate pain in the final .2-.4 miles. Walking pace is faster; more “pop” in my legs.
  3. Post workout pain and night tingles are way down.

So, I’d say that it was worth it.

Still: today PT (full), 2 mile walk

This was my full 2 laps of my H course between Cooper, Laura, Rebecca.

Then 3 minute plank; did some online errands (bills)

Then 2000 yard swim. 700 warm up of side/back, 300 of 25 front kick, 25 swim

1000 of 250 swim, 250 pull in 18:34

4:44, 9:14, 14:04 were the splits: 4:44, 4:30, 4:50, 4:30

Weight: 204.7 after swimming; I am going to have to cut back on food. I have been stuck here for months.

Shoulders: slight soreness…holding up ok.

Weight: yes, some of it is butt and legs, but waaaaay to much is plain old belly fat.

Not rainbows and unicorns

10 days after the injection:

  1. Night tingles reduced.
  2. Day to day “small stuff” pain greatly diminished.
  3. Swim pain (glute) mostly gone
  4. Ok, walking: 2 miles kind of feels like 1.5 used to and there is far less “after the fact” glute pain. But there are still tingles and duller pain..pretty dulled but still there. I also think that I get more “pop” out of my leg.
  5. Trying to learn how to squat: that still sucks.

Today: most of my PT

2 mile walk (slower)

Two months ago, this would have been exciting. Today is is “meh” due to the gorgeous weather.

More PT then 2000 yd swim:

600 of side/back

200 of 25 front balance kick, 25 free

50 alternating free/back recovery free (49, 48)

100 free, 50 back (1:41, 1:42)

100 back

100 of 25 free, 25 front kick

Then 500 of: 100 pull, 150 swim, 150 pull, 100 swim (9:36)

203.8 after swimming.

On one hand, this swim is nothing compared to what I once did. On the other hand, it is a major improvement from when I started (restarted swimming)

And the shoulder feels great.

1 week check

It has been one week since the injection. I honestly think it has helped; tingles way down, pain way down; not much tightness during my swim.

Weight: 203.1 after swimming.

Swim: 600 of 100 side, 100 back

200 of 25 front kick, 25 swim

200 in 3:28

100 back

200 in 3:29

100 back

3 x 100 swim, 100 pull in 11:50 (9:47 for the first 500)

Maybe tomorrow I’ll see what I can do.

Qualified success?

5 days after injection: I can say that walking is better. Yes, I get after tingles, but the neurogenic claudication is MUCH better; I am not in “pre-limping mode” when I stop with my shorter walks.

Today: PT, with some attempt to squat fully (body still won’t quite do it..ankles?) with my before and after walks (first walk was the faster of the two today)

When will I try to do it all at once? Haven’t worked up the courage..yet. This weekend?

Then I swam 1850 yards: usual 800 yards of 100’s of side, back, and 200 of swim drills and swim.

Then my old 4 x 250 (alt swim/pull) with equipment changes; 4:47, 9:25, 14:14, 18:46 or

Swim: 4:47, 4:49, pull 4:38, 4:32.

Shoulder: not an issue..but we’ll see what the night brings.

Weight: 204.7 after swimming…then again I did have a lot of water before. Dinner with Lynn the night before.

A bit better

late start…full PT, then a 1850 yard swim: 600 of side/back, 200 25 kick, 25 free, then 1000 in 18:50 alternating 250 free, 250 pull: 4:45, 9:25, 14:14, 18:50 which breaks it down: 4:45, 4:40, 4:49, 4:36 or 9:34 for swimming, 9:16 for pulling.

Weight: 204 after swimming. Then a walk:

It went better than expected; started to feel bad at 1.6 but it never got terrible.

Note: shoulder tired out…sore afterward but felt good with a stretch.