Superfit at 50: pre-op benchmark to aid recovery

On Tuesday, I will have my right hip replaced and subject to a diligent recovery (not over doing things!) the plan is as follows. Full recovery will take 12 months so this will be a measured journey;

  • Wk0: lots of movement which means not sitting for periods longer than 40 minutes so regular short walks including going up and down stairs, initially aided by a crutch or stick;
  • Wk2: indoor cycling starting with zero resistance then building as my body tells me;
  • Wk3: swimming once the wound is healed and stiches dissolved. We are very fortunate for where we live has a sea filled lido called Marine Lake and the Bristol Channel only a short walk away. Both offer terrific opportunities to swim all year round. The only caveat here for me is that having been diagnosed with epilepsy last year, I need someone to keep me company. Fortunately, a group of friends have welcomed me into their swim group, so swimming will form a key part of my recovery. I had my first sea swim at the weekend and can say that it was the nearest feeling to being in a trail-ultra since I stopped running;
  • Rowing wk4: my trusted WaterRower 😊
  • Running @ wk12: will start short and gentle

I told Professor Hart that I was going to buy an indoor cycle to ensure that I could rebuild my fitness as quickly as possible and he suggested that I consider one with a power meter and benchmark my performance pre-op and every two weeks thereafter, with a standard session to make the comparison and track progress: 5 minute warm-up followed with 1 minute hard, one minute recovery, another hard, final recovery minute then final hard.

After speaking to my brother-in law who is an avid cyclist and doing lots of my own research on-line, I have purchased a Wattbike Atom which will arrive the week after next. In the meantime, thanks to the team at Everyone Active Stadium who let me use one of their bikes to do the pre-op benchmark ride. This showed that my ‘good’ left leg was doing the larger part of the work, something which I knew from my running but now I will have data, fact and evidence post-op to track, guide and motivate my recovery.

Today, I feel good. I am someone who needs a goal and a plan and now I have one and this is probably the very essence of Life is a Sine Curve and the very first post I made back in 2017. Plans can and will always change, but change is so much easier when you have a good idea of where you want to be and how you can get there.

I will next post in a couple of weeks so in the meantime, happy running, exercising and being the best version of yourself.

Cheers

Andy

2 thoughts on “Superfit at 50: pre-op benchmark to aid recovery

  1. Best of luck! I’m a hospital based physical therapist and have helped many people get up the day of surgery and to prepare for discharge home. Do everything your PT says! Check with your doctor about open water swims, as wounds are more prone to infection in open water than in a pool. I’ll be thinking of you Tuesday!

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