Day 14 Post Abdominoplasty–Progress!
Time is flying by with my recovery process. I have learned many things along my journey so far. First and foremost, I am learning how to recover and how to ask for help. I must say that I am getting much better at it!!
The other thing that I have learned is how awesome and funny my kids are. I mean, even the ridiculous fights that they get into are absolutely hilarious! I have been able to sit back and watch them as I cannot physically or verbally respond in my usual way. That is by either raising my voice to get them to stop fighting or physically intervening. And, do you know what! It actually works even better!! It is difficult to describe but, I am going to stick with this new way of handling the moments of chaos... That is, stepping out and unless a physical injury is eminent, letting them figure it out!
My physical progress is slowing down just a bit as I am pretty much at my threshold on many of my exercises. I am, adding something new every three days and seeing how I physically react. There is NO protocol for this process other than rest and then go back to the gym at 6 weeks! MMMmmm... No thank you!! Fortunately, I have some GREAT mentors to learn from!
I am not sore through my abdominal wall anymore, except after lying in bed for a while. When I have pain it is mostly located around my incision. Every day it feels natural to stand a little straighter. The breath work feels really good!
Immune System and Cardio!
Current Training Series
I am only performing one set at a time of all of these patterns. In the morning I follow that circuit with a 35 minute walk, including now two small inclines. I am walking in my Vivobarefoot shoes on gravel, sand and grass.
Throughout the day 4-5 more times I choose 3 exercises and walk another 5-10 minutes while hydrating! Small snippets of movement are most successful for me so far!
HYPERVOLT TISSUE WORK
This weekend I start soft tissue work and Functional Manual Reaction with a colleague, Kelly Cap. We will work on my hips and feet. The Hypervolt is an amazing tool and GREAT investment that increases blood flow and improves the viscosity (hydration) of my tissue.
SPIKY BALL ROLLING
Rolling with the spiky ball throughout the day wakes up my foot and helps to prepare the tissue for loading!
Start this pattern seated and progress to supported standing and then freestanding.
FOOT AND ANKLE COMPLEX
This pattern is taken directly from Functional Soft Tissue Transformation online written by Lenny Parracino and Brandi Marshal of the Gray Institute. The start of the whole chain reaction begins with the foot, I have a stiff right ankle from multiple ankle sprains. That stiff ankle will cause an abnormal pulling through my core as I begin to walk more. So, this pattern is essential.
Start this pattern supported in a doorway for extra stability.
Here is a simple strategy to increase the intrinsic muscle strength of the foot which helps with gait!
You can perform these exercises from a seated position and progress to supported standing and then unsupported.
HIP MOBILITY WITH BREATH
The breathing exerciser really takes this exercise up another notch by increasing intra-abdominal pressure intermittently loading the abdominal wall from various angles! The internally rotated foot position feels so good on this pattern. I am looking forward to 10 weeks from now when I can being to encourage more hip motion and load it with a ViPR Pro.
I began this pattern supported in the True Stretch (you can use a doorway if you don’t have a True Stretch) with arms fixed and then progressed to a small arm driver with the PVC pole.
This pattern has so much versatility and potential for growth. Think about all of the variables that can be tweaked, speed, range of motion, standing surface, foot position, eye driver. All can be integrated with thoughtful purpose. The purpose of this pattern is to put a bit of motion into my scapula and hips in an integrated way. But there is no purpose to push the limits on this exercise as my core still requires about 8-10 more weeks of healing.
The purpose of the positional isometric exercises is to stimulate fibroblasts to the wound to help with healing. Even though I am not working directly on contracting the core, all movements go through the core.
I am only at one set standing per day of these patterns, but multiple sets seated. Begin these patterns seated to avoid gripping and compensation.
Back to the hips! I really attribute the lack of back pain, which is so common with this surgery, to my hip mobility. Unfortunately, it is very asymmetrical and my right hip is very stiff in comparison to my left. This is going to be an ongoing process of repair! Here I am just aiming to expose my joint to variable ranges of motion not trying to get a big “stretch”.
You can use a sturdy chair in a doorway for these stretches. If you don’t have a True Stretch.
STEPS WITH EYE DRIVER
The eye driver here helps to integrate the core via the fascial lines of the neck. I can feel this pattern all the way down through my pelvic floor. I am only performing this stepping pattern on the Personal Power Plate one set per day (two sets causes gripping through my abdominal wall) and on land the other two sets.
I began this pattern supported in the True Stretch (you can use a doorway and then a single wall and then free standing.
KNEE TO SHOULDER MATRIX FROM SEATED
Here breath is important as the inhale occurs with the hands moving away from the midline when more tension is put through the core and into the pelvic floor. Yes! Breath can be a load!!
ARM SWING MATRIX
Here we are trying to create a gait like stimulus to the core and pelvic floor via the arm swing. I am only performing one set standing on the power plate in the morning when energy is best. The rest of the day, my sets are still seated!
Begin this exercise seated and progress to standing. Eventually the arms will be up at overhead!
INITIAL RANGE SQUATS
Squats have such far reaching benefits! Here I am just working on range of motion and getting a closed chain triple flexion through the ankle, knee and hip! This pattern has immediate life carryover, squatting in the garden, picking up my shoes to slip on, etc.
PELVICORE SEMI SQUAT
The Pelvicore pro is a functional neuromuscular reeducation training tool that subconsciously allows me to activate the pelvic floor and core. Here I have progressed from seated to a semi-squat, which changes the load and position at the hip both benefiting the reintegration process!