Saturday, August 25, 2012
I was reading some other people discussing how much fun the Wii game Walk it Out was...then I remembered I bought one in 2010 and it was still in my office closet. I couldn't use it because of my bad knee, so I never even opened it. Well I got it out last night about midnight, and figured out how to use it and they were right, it's fun! Today I walked the equivalent of 7 miles, the game said it was about 26,000 steps, although that seems sort of high to me. My bodymedia fit armband only registered about 4500 steps, but walking in place is not really walking forward, so it's either forward motion or arm movements that is measures. I did however register between 4.5 and 10 calories per minute during the time I used the game, so it's definitely burning a good bit of calories. I was also sweating a good bit too! Altogether it was about 2 1/2 hours time today I spent playing the game. You basically have to walk in beat to music while walking around an island. You earn points for every step you make ON BEAT, and get to spend those points opening up new routes, unlocking new music songs, decorating with trees, benches, buildings etc. I wouldn't have walked so long if I didn't have a competitive spirit and want to keep just getting one more THING. So for the video game addicts like myself out there, it's a keeper and believe it will be easy to keep on using it. It's great to have a way to exercise for a long period of time rather than in short bursts like the wii fit plus like I have been using for the past couple of weeks. I like that too, but the constant changing of games gets frustrating. The only thing I can say against the Walk it Out game, is that the music gets pretty repetitive. It comes with 15 songs unlocked, and you have to click on the white/green CD shaped icons while walking to unlock more. It takes 4 parts to unlock one song, and they are all randomly placed. After about 3 hours of game time I unlocked 9 more songs. I am unlocking songs first for the most part, along with opening new routes and building bridges to get to new places to find more song parts. You can remove songs you don't like, so when I get a lot, I will take some off. Right now I don't like the repeats, so will listed to all of them until I get a good playlist that lasts through the amount of time I'd like to play. You can only hear VACATION so many times before you don't want to hear it ever again!!
Saturday, June 09, 2012
Surgery went well. I have an awesome surgeon. Operation was complete in 45 minutes, about 5-6" incision. Have an ice machine that is great, it keeps circulating ice cold water through the pad and I can use it all night long. I haven't had any problems with excessive swelling, and my flexion is currently 88 degrees extension at 0, which PT says is good at this point. Still have a lot of pain and taking meds every 4 hrs. Alternate between tramadol at night and oxycodone 5mg during the day. I cannot sleep when I take oxy at night, and ambien makes me nauseated the entire next day. I am not doing quite as many exercises as I should, it really hurts to do many of them. I think I need to walk more during the day outside, I think the activity will help with the pain. I am lucky to have my mother in law here to do almost all the cooking cleaning laundry etc. and think it's made me a bit lazy? Staples come out monday, yay! I have gauze over the incision with a giant tegaderm, which is like a water proof plastic adhesive sheet that holds the gauze in place. Great because I have been able to shower since day 2 post op, but bad because it feels kind of tight and creates more pain when doing bending exercises due to the pressure on the incision/staples. I vow to move more today, and see if it helps pain level at night when its worst trying to get comfortable in bed.
Sunday, May 13, 2012
Nothing else can be done, so I am having Total Knee Replacement on my left knee May 30. I am excited and scared a little at the same time. It's major surgery, but I feel very confident in my doctor, and the hospital I have chosen. I will be posting blogs to update my recovery for my own personal records and to perhaps give others an idea on what to expect who may be considering the surgery in the future. I have read many other spark people pages who have had it done, and really didn't see anything but positive outcomes!
Since I started on SP over a year ago, I have lost and maintained a 10% weight loss. I keep trying and failing to lose more, but maintaining is good enough for me for now. Once I am back to 100% I should be able to do more exercise with less pain and continue in my weight loss efforts! That's the plan anyway, and I generally stick to my plans :-)
6 weeks pre-surgery my right leg is 50% stronger than my left one. They measured my strength in a machine using my legs forward and away, quads and hamstrings. Right was 108 and 50 lbs of torque, left was 64 and 42 lbs. I get measured again 1 week before surgery, then at several post op visits. I have been doing lots of leg exercises to strengthen those leg mucles, so I will be curious to see if it improves. It's a great program, and the data will be a great history to look back on! I have -5 degrees of extension in my right knee (hyperextension) vs. 5 degrees in my left, meaning I can't straighten the leg all the way and there is 10 degrees overall difference in the knee joints. Probably causing my stupid limp!
The exercises I have had to do for 6 weeks before surgery were given to me by proaxis therapy. Here's what they recommended:
Straight leg raise, tighten and relax quads with each rep- 3 sets of 30
Side lying hip abduction-outer thighs- 3 sets of 30
Bridges- holding 3-5 seconds 3 sets of 30
Extension stretch on a towel, plus calf stretch 5 x 30 seconds
Heel slides with belt, contract and hold 30 seconds 5 times. This has improved my flexion already, but don't have the starting number handy, will add/edit at the 1 week pre-op visit.
Hamstring stretches- leaning forward while seated to stretch- 5 x 30 seconds.
Hospital gave me a list of simple exercises to start 3 weeks before surgery, to be added to the ones above.
Quad sets-knee tightening- 20 reps
Heel slides- 20 reps
Short arc quad over 1 gallon paint can- 20 reps
Lying straight leg raise- 20 reps
Arm Chair press-ups- to help strenghten arms to help with moving after surgery- 20 reps. I hurt my elbow and have tendonitis, so I am doing tricep machine at the gym instead.
The strengthening has actually decreased my pain! Guess that's why physical therapy is one of the non-surgical treatments for osteoarthritis of the knee. That will be handy, since I will have to stop taking any nsaids or pain meds 5-10 days pre-op. I think I can have tylenol, but have to check my paperwork again to be sure.
I'd advise anyone who has a bad knee to try the exercises out and see if it helps, and for sure to be more prepared for knee replacement surgery. The stronger your muscles are pre-op, the quicker you will get better use of your joint afterwards. It can't hurt!!
For the record, I will be 47 when I have the surgery, and the implant they are using is a Smith and Nephew Oxinium implant, with up to a 30 year wear rate. The cobalt steel implants are only rated for 10-15 years, so it's something to consider for younger patients. If all goes well and I keep my muscles in good shape, I may be 77 before I need a revision! By then they may have bionic legs, lol. I have a lot of things to do, work, play, put the kids through college, travel with my hubby someday, and I didn't want to wait to have replacement until I'm almost too old to do anything but sit around anyway. I'd rather spend the next 20 years pain free and exercising on a regular bases!!
Okay, my first official pre-op record is written, I am hoping I can look back and reflect on the journey and a positive one.
Monday, May 09, 2011
Of all the things I miss since having my knee messed up is the simple ability to JUMP. Hop, jump rope, aerobics classes, wii games, dance dance revolution etc. I had knee arthroscopy April 28, 2011 to remove lose bodies from my knee which included a bone spur. The MRI and xrays already showed that I had next to no cartilage left in my medial compartment, and heavy arthritis (all in one leg only luckily), which all caused me to limp and hurt almost all the time. Synvisc injections were good at keeping the pain away, but still it would swell when I overdid walking or other activities. Now that I am on a journey to live healthier, I wish I could do more cardio to help boost the metabolism and make the weight come off faster. I am not fully healed yet from surgery, but still am wondering how it will be when I am. Will I be able to jump again? I'd love to be given a 2nd chance at keeping active while pain free again! However, I am also missing cartilage, and it never grows back. Hind sight is always 20/20, and how I miss the days I took simple things like the ability to JUMP! If you can still jump, don't ever take it for granted, and have a blast with your exercise! I guess the other lesson here, is if you have knee pain that doesn't do away, keep visiting that doctor and insist on an MRI early to detect correctible injuries like loose bone that wears away cartilage when you don't remove it!! I put up with mine until it was too late.
Tuesday, April 19, 2011
I have always had trouble eating "only" the number of calories in my weight loss range. I can usually eat a couple hundred more and still lose weight. I guess it's because I had been eating so many calories?!? Well, in order to figure out how many calories I should be eating in order to maintain a 145 pound lightly active person, I went to http://www.cancer.org/healthy/toolsandcalc
I entered my height, FUTURE weight (145), and my activity level- light. It calculated that I needed to eat 2148 calories a day to maintain my desired weight. Simple enough. I can do that easily, and now have a starting point which I can adjust depending on whether or not I am losing enough to get to my goal. I know everyone has a different metabolism, and it may be that I lose too slow eating 2148 calories. The great thing about having a number is that I can subtract calories, or add exercise to meet my needs. At my highest I was 221 pounds, and was slowly gaining about 5 pounds a year, so I was probably eating to maintain a 235 pound person, which is 3739 calories a day. That's a lot of calories and I have no doubt that I was consuming that many. Now that I have been on spark people I have been keeping my calories to about 2000 per day give or take, and went from 213 to 201 in a month. It's all math right? Simply by going from 3700 per day to 2150 per day to maintain a 135 pound person, will still be a great deficit, and should easily keep losing weight. It's so simple, even I can do that!
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