I just got back in from beautiful Vancouver, Canada late last night. While I am not a city person exactly, I do enjoy a quick in-and-out visit on occasion. Compared to my trip to Montgomery, Alabama last week, this was quite a contrast, no offense intended to all you southerners out there. If you like cities, Vancouver is a chic, cosmopolitan hub of activity as is the impression I got a priori watching the Olympics. There's no end to things to do if you like urban adventure. Out along the waterfront lies Stanley Park, a runner's dream or even just a nice place for a relaxing walk. Ethnic restaurants, shops, and cultural exhibits abound on every block. I enjoyed walking among the towering thicket of skyscrapers and feeling the energy and seeing the bustling vibe. Hell, I even stayed at a hostel off of the "never sleeps" Granville District to get the complete immersion into city life. There were lots of nice, young kids from all over the world hanging out with their backpacks. Kinda' cool ... I posted a link on this blog to a few pictures; I might add some more later on.
Oh yeah, the ACL recovery. Well, we are fully engaged in Phase III of the Moon protocol now. I was joking with Rob today that his workout is slowly starting to build to a full-blown lower body gym routine I would do if I were completely healthy, and it hasn't even been two months from surgery! Virtually every exercise involves weights and it seems like the weight increases with every visit. Balance exercises are now wickedly difficult. We have also added in jumping, and hopping routines. So far, I have had no problems when I am done for the day with physical therapy.
While in Vancouver, I went for a level 6 mile bike ride out at Stanley Park with my friends Julia and Ben Sharp. My knee felt tight afterward, though I probably went overboard on the walking while I was there.
My swimming lessons are now starting to test me ... seriously. I have yet to do an unassisted freestyle lap but I get the sense that the day is coming when I "lose my virginity". Beth did a great job today mixing up laps with the pull buoy and the kickboard. Yes, kickboard! Recall, I was given permission in my recent doctor's visit to flutter kick. I am still learning how to alternate breath when I am in the water but that will come with time as I get more comfortable. Eventually, all this will get tied together and I won't be so tentative with my knee.
There are two articles I stumbled onto via the Internet that are worth mentioning. The first article is is a blurb from a medical journal that essentially concludes, "An early return to vigorous activities is not recommended in patients undergoing ACLRs (anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction) with hamstring grafts." While there are some statistical details I take issue with, I think the take-home message is clear: push your recovery, and you will more than likely have poor ACL stability shortly thereafter. The second article, from Science Daily, is a bit more positive. Its take-home message is that 15 years after ACLR, 84% of male patients are still highly active. It should be noted that the study focused on those ACLRs with a patellar reconstruction.
Well that's the view from here today. Best of luck to Beth Byron and Sarah Quesen in the Morgantown Triathlon this Sunday!