Week 7

Not a whole lot new to report.  Pain is decreasing weekly and the most significant decrease happened at the end of last week.  I went in for my physio appointment today and was finally granted the ability to do plank, table top, etc.  I’ll be able to start my core stabilization now that the trauma from the surgery is healed up for the most part.  He also recommended gently rubbing vitamin E lotion around the scar on my belly to help break down some of the scar tissue and help with the scar itself.

I still get some pain in my shins when I sit for too long and my right big toe still feels a bit off, but I think it is just nerves healing.  I’ve emailed Mr. Boeree just to be sure and solicit his opinion.  My back feels quite good.  Sitting tolerance is still an hour or so.

My only outstanding question was when I can lift Nora again… 25lbs.  My physio said to wait until 8-10 weeks before I try to lift her.  He said I’m fine lifting 10-15lbs now.  So, another week or two and I’ll be picking up my little girl!  I’m pretty stoked for this milestone.

I got a call back from our hydrotherapy pool finally, but it is during my work hours, weekly and quite frankly, I’m not sure I’m going to need it.  I’m a little disappointed it took this long to get back to me.

My wife is due in 12 days with our little boy.  I’m very excited and really hope I’ll be able to teach him how to ski, skate and shoot a puck when the time comes!

The only other update is that I seem to get tired at work around 3 in the afternoon and have been knocking off an hour early this week and continuing my work tasks later in the evening.  I’m very lucky I have the flexibility at work to do this!


The End of the Beginning

Tomorrow, I go back to work.  I’m pretty excited.  I’ve already got less pain getting up out of chairs/bed and in/out of cars, than I did pre-op.  It’s going to be a bit hairy for me sitting for so long, but I’ve got a standing workstation I can use with my trusty macbook and I’m bringing in my trusty Jade yoga mat that is made of 1/4″ natural rubber.  I’m going to sneak some lie downs at work when needed… 🙂  The data center should be nice and air-conditioned!

I can’t begin to thank Mr. Boeree and you trail blazers enough for recommending him.


6 Weeks

I’m finally here… 6 weeks post op.  I’m doing quite well, but still have a LONG way to go!  I remember reading the story of a professional athlete riding BMX that I posted a while back and thinking “how can this guy still be recovering at 3 months… he should be good to go!”.  After having gone through it, there’s no way I’d be ready either.  Don’t get me wrong, I feel better than I have in quite some time, but I’m still sore.  There is a lot of hype out there on getting back to normal quickly, post lumbar adr.  Make no mistake, this is a long, arduos process (for me anyway). I don’t want to discourge anyone, but I used to play very competitive sports and cannot see a return to that level of fitness any time soon.

Stomach – The incision is completely healed and has been since about week 3.  I still have a slight bump/swelling under it, predominantly to the left side.  It is a little tender to the touch and I get pain deep inside my core when I work my abs with any gusto.  Does anyone know when the bump will go away?  I’ve read about massage to help break down abdominal scar tissue… any of you guys have experience?

Back – You can really tell when you’ve pushed your luck.  I spent an afternoon playing lego and video games (on the floor) with my nephew on Monday.  I was quite sore for the rest of the evening, but woke up in excellent shape on Tuesday morning.  I’m still getting the occasional tightness around the bones that flank the spine at the top of the pelvis and around the SI joint, but it comes and goes.  My only real pain at L4/5 comes when I sit for too long (over an hour).

Legs – I’m still getting odd bouts of pain in my shins, but it is a far cry from what it was like before.  I start “real” physio next week and expect that some hamstring and hip stretches will help to sort out my tight legs.  The numbness that I felt for a couple of days is gone once again.

Walking – I’m at 8km at day and don’t feel any discomfort.  I did some math and it looks like I’ve walked ~200km since I got back from the UK!

Lying down – I end up in bed once in the morning and afternoon for about 40 mins each and generally up and around for the rest of the day.

Kid #1 – Looking after a kid post ADR is tough.  I’ve had to work on my coercion tactics because of my inability to pick up her scrawny 25lb frame.  😉

Kid #2 – Due on September 12th.  Should be interesting!

Drugs – Tylenol every once in a while… maybe once a week.  NSAIDs lasted for about 2 weeks and I turfed them.

Xrays – I got the req for xrays at 6 weeks, but Mr Boeree cautioned against it.  He said that they wouldn’t show much and he’d like to limit my exposure to radiation so soon after the surgery.  Did all of you guys wait until 3 months?  I know Mike had a pretty cool CAT scan at 2 months.

Work – I go back to work on Monday and I’m looking forward to it!  I miss the peeps and the brain workout.

Web – I’ve moved servers/domains to speed up the site a bit.  Please take note of the new url.

DVT Socks – I think I can stop wearing them today!  “Wear them for six weeks.”  Does that include the sixth week, or stop at Day 42?!  I’ve still got them on today, just in case.

Supplements – Whey protein, glutemine, fish oil, multivitmain and gluco/chond/msm.

Driving – Has gotten a lot better as of late.  I can spend up to about 30 mins in the car without any discomfort.

Family – They’ve been an exceptional help and my pregnant wife has been a real trooper. I’ll be able to return the favour in September.

Sleep – Woke up on my side with very little discomfort!

Beds – Any recco’s on a good mattress? It’s time for a bad back certified bed upgrade.

All in all, things are going well and I’m happy with where I’m at!



Well, everything was going fine until I had a bit of a setback yesterday afternoon. I was lying down for about 30 mins and got up to grab some stuff out of my car. Nothing strenuous or difficult. As I exited the car, my back decided to spasm. This is the third spasm since the op(two happened on the night of the op). Man did it hurt. I couldn’t find any muscle relaxers, so I jumped into a hot shower as quickly as I could… after spending a good 20 minutes in pain on the floor. Immediately post shower, I cracked a beer and was feeling better shortly thereafter. It’s still a little tight today and I really don’t know what set it off! Stupid backs.

I’ve been off Tylenol for a few weeks now and will probably take some preventatively today.

I’d also like to note, for any of you potential ADR candidates, that I have some odd clicks and feelings in my back every once in a while around what I believe to be the facets.  No pain, just a different feeling.  The clicks scared me at first because they happened more often, but I think it has to do with the joints getting used to their new height and interaction above/below.  The odd feeling and clicks seem to be dissipating as I heal.


5 Weeks

I’m officially 5 weeks post op.  I can’t wait for the magical 6th week!

I’m still sitting, walking, resting and exceptionally bored.  I’ve watched most of the Netflix films that interest me and am finally making a push to complete Shantaram.  I think I’m looking forward to going back from work just for a bit of a mental challenge.

Having said that, I reached a small milestone today.  While I have pushed Nora in her stroller a couple times without issue(with my wife), today was the first day I ventured out on my own with our dog.  I’ve had him out for 3 walks already today and we’re both doing fine.  I’m very happy to have a companion now for all of my walks!

The odd numb feeling on my left side is starting to subside and I’m beginning to think most of the discomfort and numbness that I feel is a direct result of sleeping on my side.  I’m sure I’ve still got some swelling and tenderness back there and I’m waking myself up at night with little tweaks/twinges when I’m rolling onto my side.

My shins feel 100% better since switching to runners as well.   It just really sucks tying them up! 🙂

Day 33

Over the past couple of days, I’ve noticed a marked decrease in lower back discomfort and an increase in shin pain and a small bout of weird numbness in my left hammie and buttock.  Kind of like before, but different.  I’ve been taking it very easy and am only walking for PT, so I’m not sure what could have caused it.  I’m going to chalk it up to nerves healing at this point, because I really don’t know what could have triggered it.  I woke up with it on Sunday and it continued through yesterday.  The nerve symptoms are not persistent and resolve when I move positions.  Hopefully everything is ok back there.  Recovery sure is a roller-coaster!

Update:  I just went for another walk and got to thinking the shin pain might be coming from my worn out birks combined with walking 7.5k per day.  I’ll switch up to proper runners today to see if it makes a difference.


Post-ADR Physio

Found a great interview on ADRSupport, here. I think I’m in the just walk for 0-6 weeks boat… the core exercises still don’t feel right.

I made the right decision on 6 weeks before back to work. I went into work to see the guys today and had a haircut from our in-house hairdresser and I’m absolutely exhausted. I’m not in pain, just tired. It’ll be early to bed tonight. I was out from 2:00 to 4:00pm, so it’s still a long way to go!

It probably didn’t help that my two year old had me up at 5am this morning either.