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I have been going to the gym and trying different exercises. In addition to the exercise bike I also started doing a few baby deadlifts and squats:

I have been using my leg more and more. I rarely use my leg brace anymore.

I started using the exercise bike a little bit. This is probably my favorite rehab exercise. It makes my knee feel so good.

So that’s the good stuff. Now on to the bad stuff.

The Flu From Hell

Backstory: So my body has been used to lying in bed for 15-20 hours per day.

On Wednesday I decided it’s time for me to go back to work. I am a personal trainer and boot camp instructor (I don’t have to do the exercises while my knee is messed up).

I worked Wednesday evening and Thursday morning. Everything seemed to be going OK. Then on Friday morning I felt very nauseous. And pretty much spent the whole day puking my guts out.

I took a pic while in the midst of the flu from hell.

What felt even worse was the body ache from the flu. I felt a deep pain in my joints/bones. Both knees, neck, back, shoulders. Everything hurt. I couldn’t be still. I kept moving around because the pain was intense.

It was at this point that I felt mentally broken. The combination of my usual post-surgery knee pain + nausea + bone/joint pain from the flu = Mike mentally breaks.

Just because I temporarily had a mental break doesn’t mean I remain broken. Just like working out. You break down the muscle and it adapts and heals back stronger. I feel the same is happening here.

2x Olympic gold medalist Vasyl Lomachenko said that his sports psychologist told him that he must continually break himself mentally in training in order to reach new levels. I feel the same thing happened with me.

Unfortunately my girlfriend who was sick and then got healthy is now sick again with the same flu. She’s actually mentally tougher than me. I was complaining a lot more.

On top of the flu bullshit I ended up getting a parking ticket for what I felt like was a stupid reason. I was really pissed when I saw the ticket and punched my car really hard. That was dumb.

My middle knuckle is still a bit swollen.

Well, fuck. That was 3 weeks since surgery. A bunch of bad shit happened. We survived. We’re moving forward.

The week ended on a good note. Got to see my parents’ dog.

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Day 16 After ACL Surgery for BJJ

Highlights of the past few days:
– Had my first post-op appointment with the surgeon.
– Ditched crutches completely.
– Not wearing leg brace while indoors
– Rode an exercise bike for 15 minutes

Nurse taking off my bandages on day 15. after ACL surgery.

Had my first post-op appointment

The post operation appointment went well. The only crappy part was waiting for 40 minutes past my appointment time. But it’s a busy place and I am happy a good doctor did my knee surgery – for free. So I can’t complain.

A nurse came to take the bandages off my leg. This whole time I thought I had stitches but apparently they were staples. I didn’t even know some doctors like to use staples.

Believe it or not they didn’t hurt at all when taking them out. 11 staples total.

They didn’t hurt at all but it was weird seeing metal sticking out of my leg. The nurse grabbed special scissors and popped the 11 staples out. It didn’t hurt at all so I was happy. Looks nasty though.

My leg is healing up nicely. Should have a few cool scars.

Not wearing leg brace while indoors

My doctor told me I can take off my leg brace when indoors and if I am walking short distances. He wants me to rehab aggressively and is fine with me putting my weight on the injured leg.

That came as a relief because I was worried that I might be pushing myself too far. Hearing him say that I can put weight on my operated leg and that I can walk around without my brace, that was re-assuring.

After walking around for a day without my leg brace I am beginning to feel a bit more confident with my walk. Also there is a bit of increase in pain. That’s to be expected. If I am walking more I will feel aches more often. At least at first.

Rode an exercise bike for the first time since surgery

The range of motion in my knee is getting better. I can bend it enough to pedal a bike. This morning I decided to go to the gym and do a little biking.

I dropped my girlfriend off at work and at around 7am I was in the gym and on the exercise bike. I wanted to start my day off with a good momentum.

The exercise bike was pretty fun. Way more fun than doing my regular rehab exercises.

After the biking I tried some pull ups and dips and my shoulders were killing me. Probably because I haven’t exercised properly in 16 days. It’s to be expected.

I did a few upper body exercises and grabbed a mat and did my knee rehab exercises.

Then I came home and wrote this blog post. I hope you enjoyed it. I am going to ice my knee and do my personal training and boot camp work next.

Today is my first day back at boot-camp. I am nervous and excited. It’s going to be a fun workout. (I won’t be doing much obviously) but I can stand and give verbal ques. I’m sure I can adapt.

Ok that’s it for now. If you have any questions or comments please post them below. Take care.

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2 Weeks After ACL Surgery – Recovery for BJJ

Haven’t properly worked out in 2 weeks. I don’t remember the last time I didn’t exercise for 2 weeks.

I drove for the first time today since the surgery. Everything went well.

I drove to my parents’ house today. On the drive there I felt a bit cautious. I hadn’t driven in 2 weeks and I was afraid I might have forgotten how to drive a bit.

The drive back was much easier and I actually enjoyed driving.

My physiotherapist told me not to drive until after 4 weeks. I don’t really care. I have to work and make money. I’m back to work starting Wednesday.

My mom’s friend has a son that got the same ACL surgery as me. It took him 4 weeks to get rid of crutches. I pretty much stopped using them after day 12.

I am not recommending anyone try this stuff. I just felt comfortable walking around without them so I ditched them.

The most important thing is to walk correctly. A common mistake people make is putting to much weight on the good leg and really pandering to the injured side.

I make sure I can put weight on both of my legs and walk with about a 50/50 weight distribution.

It’s also important to note that I am wearing my leg brace all day.

I wear my leg brace so much that it has literally taken the shape of my leg.

I still do not feel confident walking around with it off. I don’t want any crazy accident to occur and have to do the surgery all over again. Hell no!

Pain

I haven’t taken any pain killers today. There has been a 40% decrease in pain in the last 2 days.

Right after the surgery if I were to stand up to take a piss that 30 seconds standing up would feel super painful.

My knee felt like it was on fire any time I was standing up for longer than 30 seconds. Now, on day 14 I feel 4/10 pain when I stand up for long periods of time.

It’s not completely gone but it has gone down quite a bit. Today I spent a lot of time standing, taking a shower, driving, etc.. and I just feel a slight ache.

Rehab Exercises

I do them once or twice a day. I need to do them first thing in the morning or else they won’t get done.

Right now I am doing:

Quad tensing (flexing my quad)
Straight Leg Raises (side and back leg raises)
Knee bends
Glute tensing

Knee bends probably feel the most weird. I had a hamstring graft so part of my hamstring tendon is missing. Some weirdness is to be expected I guess. I am sure it will get better.

Goals for week 3:

– Keep improving on my range of motion
– Completely ditch crutches by the end of the week
– Ride an exercise bike
– Get back to work

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11 Days After ACL Surgery

Here are some eventful things that have happened in the last few days:

Walking Without Crutches

I am able to walk without crutches for 10-15 minutes at a time.

Tensing my quad at physio

On day 8 or 9 my girlfriend’s step dad randomly asked me if I can walk without my crutches.

I said, “I dunno, let’s see.” I put my crutches away and walked a few steps. To my surprise I was able to walk a bit.

For the last few days I have been doing all my walking indoors crutch free. I still use the crutches for outdoor walking.

Almost Completely Off Pain Medication

Yesterday I only took 1 pain pill. I realized it after the day was almost over and thought it was pretty cool.

Last week my knee felt like someone was shooting a flamethrower at it. Now I am largely pain free.

I feel some pain if I stand/walk for too long. But overall pain is much lower than last week.

2nd Physio Appointment

I went in for my second physio appointment. I had one last Friday. I am doing it once per week at the moment.

My knee bend is at 100 degrees right now (last week it was 83). The goal for 2 weeks is 90 degrees. Today is day 11 and I got 100 degrees so I am kicking ass.

Achieved 100 degree bend today on day 11. Smashed the goal of 90 degrees by day 14.

Knee extension was 0 degrees. Last week it was 8 degrees. This means I am now able to straighten my leg fully.

After measuring the angles my physiotherapist massaged my IT bands and it freakin’ hurt! Check out my face:

Me while getting my IT bands massaged. Ouch!

My IT band was tight!

He gave me some new exercises to do every day. I find them very boring (ex. flex your leg and hold for 10 seconds, repeat 10 times for 3 sets). Oh my God. Yawwwn. But anyway I do the best I can so I can come back strong and quick.

If you have any questions or comments hit me up below. I”ll be back with an update in a day or two.

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Biggest lesson I learned from my ACL surgery is that:

I OVERestimated how painful the surgery would be (it wasn’t painful at all) and I UNDERestimated how painful recovery would be (first week was difficult).

As I am typing this it is 6pm on day 8 after my ACL surgery.

On day 6 I woke up to some awesome breakfast in bed made by my girlfriend. She has been crazy busy with her Doula business, work, and she finds time to take care of me. She runs a great website on birth at SilverBirth.com

After breakfast we went over to my parent’s house and visited my cute dog 🙂

I took a shower at my parents’ place and it was hard to balance on one leg! My good leg got so tired from me putting all my weight on it.

Nothing else eventful happened on day 6.

On day 7 my girlfriend came down with a bit of a virus. She was feeling sick. We hung out together most of the day.

Day 8 (today) was special because it was the first time I was able to walk semi-normally without crutches. Check it out:

I have also reduced the amount of pain pills to about 2 per day.

I have been doing my rehab exercises and keeping up with that stuff. My next appointment is for Friday. That’s all to report for now!

If you have any questions or comments feel free to leave them below.

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