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Tuesday, June 20, 2017

My Time in PT Purgatory

I mentioned the week before last that I had a needle stuck into my knee--that's how I roll on vacation. Along with the steroid injection, I was referred to physical therapy. Have you been to PT? OMG, they make you hurt. One of the guys at work said his father-in-law called them physical terrorists instead of physical therapists! After the way I felt the day after my second session, I have to admit that the nickname is dead-on accurate.

Session one wasn't that bad. Four exercises and I was supposed to do them at home twice a day. And I did. They took about half an hour, and while they left my leg muscles fatigued, the only real soreness I had was in my butt. Yes, you read that right. One of my exercises was to tighten my glutes and hold for 5 seconds. Three sets of ten.

Session two was the one that left me walking funny. My physical therapist added a few new exercises to my set. The two quad stretches were okay. What killed me (I think) was the one where I had to lift my leg all the way up, knee straight, and hold.

Then it got worse.

Same leg lift, but then cant the leg to the side. He had me stop when I made a grimace. He said, "That's the spot! I know when patients are in the right position when they make that face. Everyone makes that face."

There were a couple of other easy leg exercises done standing, but by then I was so fatigued I had to hang on to the bar.

I felt okay when I walked out of the building, but the next day, it hurt to sit, it hurt to stand, it hurt to walk. My program manager said that I looked like I was walking pretty gingerly. True that. Everything below my waist hurt and I learned I have muscles that I didn't know I had.

To close on a more serious note, I felt lucky when I left the area. I could do all the exercises and stretches even though I paid the price later. There were people in there struggling to do their exercises. There were people using canes and walkers and wearing splints. These people were all a lot worse off than I was/am. So yeah, my knee pain sucks, but I do know how fortunate I am.