So the orthopaedic looked at my MRI and vaguely concluded that I had torn my meniscus with a couple of badly strained ligaments. They couldn’t quite confirm whether those ligaments were torn and I was supposed to go back for a review a couple of weeks later. I was left with the option to either have a surgery to remove the torn tissue or just live with it.
I guess the decision would have been rather straight forward for someone half my age doing serious sports. But for a stay at home mom who had passed her 40 milestone it seem easier to just live with it. And it suddenly hit on me that I may never be able to do the fun sports I enjoy, even jogging seems like a faraway dream.
Meanwhile, the physiotherapist showed me some exercises to help strengthen my thigh to aid in knee stability. I was supposed to spend some time at home everyday, using a towel to lift up my leg and consciously work at squeezing my thigh muscles.
Sound boring? Absolutely. Didn’t help when I am hopeless at isolating my thigh muscles. My husband often teases me that I had been running with the wrong muscles all my life. Instead of using the biggest human leg muscles, I had been stressing my puny calf muscles. Ok, that kind of explains my rather un-proportionate leg. I never have slender calves, and they just seem to grow bigger the more I run! Yikes!
Going through those exercise was a real chore and I was totally unmotivated. I decided to just rest my leg.
A month passed and then 2 months passed. I still couldn’t straighten my knee. Neither could I bend my knee fully. I still couldn’t put my weight on my injured leg when I walk and I was still limping. The constant walking with my weight on my right leg is also beginning to cause my lower back to ache as my body was compensating for the imbalance.
The inactivity was beginning to make me feel restless. All the gorging and binging during Chinese New Year was making me depressed.
I decided to try cycling. I started off with my son’s bike as mine was too high and I was never really good at steering with my drop handlebars.
Every thing went well, I could peddle smoothly without having to over extend and bend my legs. For once, my knee didn’t hurt, not like when I was walking. I was exhilarated. I could finally use my left leg, my left thigh, my injured leg! For a moment, I didn’t feel that ‘handicapped’.
After having regained my confidence riding my son’s bike, I thought I was ready for my own bike.
It was pretty daunting at first but I got my husband to hold on to the bike and adjust the seat to cater to my current state. I could dismount, despite slowly and after a few round around our estate, I thought I was ready to head off on my own for my solo ride.
And I did!
My Runkeeper showed that I had clocked more than a hundred kilometres in a week!
I wasn’t going at a very fast pace but I am certainly not complaining.
It was such a wondrous feeling to be active again, to feel my thighs growing stronger!
It made me feel alive to be sweating, panting and working my lungs out.
I do miss jogging, but for now, I am contented just being able to get on my bike and peddle.
Here’s to more beautiful sunrise, slender calves (cos they don’t work that hard when cycling) and thunder thighs!