If you put in your time you'll reap the rewards!
I've always been good with doing as I'm told when it comes to rehab work / treatment for an injury. Thankfully, until a little over 8-weeks ago, my rehab was short lived (2-3 weeks maybe at most). But I've always wondered why some people choose not to listen to the advice they're given by a rehabilitation professional. If you do as you're told, you'll get better sooner... sounds like a good deal to me!
It's been a little over a month now for me rehabbing my ankle. Each week, I've achieved the goal my Athletic Therapist and I set out, and continued to progress (which was also a side goal for me; it didn't matter how quickly I progressed, as long as I don't regress).
My exercises have gone from simplistic things like scrunching a towel with your toes (my least favourite LOL), light band work to begin to strengthen the muscles surrounding the ankle joint, drawing the alphabet with my foot/ankle for mobility etc... to slowly progressing to walking, balancing, doing stairs etc... All the while learning what each different feeling meant, and to decipher between "keep going" or "hold back a bit". The body is fascinating.
I'm now into the "fun stuff" as, Leah (my Athletic Therapist here at the studio) says; squats, lunges, balance drills, increased walking and walking speed, calf strengthening.... My entire right leg feels it let me tell you after several weeks of not being able to use it much, it's at that point where you feel so good to be using your leg again, but at the same time it "burns!" :)
This morning's exercises reminded me of my progress. Going from immobilization of the joint, to walking with a limp/discomfort, to the ability to perform a quarter squat and now to a full depth squat like I used to be able to do, and be able to do it comfortably without a second thought! Yes!!!! I've even got the "green light" to try to put the skates on and go for a light public skate this week to see how that feels. Woo Hoo!!!
I'm reminded of some important things to keep in mind when doing rehab from an injury;
- Your support network can be an asset or a hindrance. Negativity or those trying to be a "doctor" and diagnosing your situation will not help your already weakened mindset that occurs naturally with injury. Find those who support you, help you stay positive and who help keep you on track with your treatment.
- Get professional help to guide you. The day after I fractured my ankle, I had a doctor and an athletic therapist helping me (in addition to my own knowledge of human physiology). Don't ignore professional help - that's what they're there for. They can keep you on track, educate you in understanding the situation and keep your body healing more efficiently and safely.
- Set weekly goals for yourself during your rehab. I've found that by focusing only on what happens between my weekly rehab appointments, has helped keep me on track and staying positive in my progress. Don't look too far ahead, just do what needs to be done.
- Do the work. As with anything in life - put the work in, and the results will follow. Do as recommended.
- Don't rush things - as much as you want to. Give the body the tools to heal, and let it do it's thing. It'll tell you when it's ready. Don't rush anything so progress continues, no matter how big or small that progress is.