Here comes the sun!


Finally, sunshine. I was beginning to think that I had somehow tripped up the weather patterns with my retirement new career adventure and put us into a permanent chilly monsoon. This turn of meteorological events gave me the impetus to start working on one of my primary Post-Dex goals, getting in shape.

One of these days I’ll post the whole sad story in detail, but the short background story is that, in 2007 I had my right knee, ravaged by a too long pick-up basketball career, replaced. A strep infection lead to a nightmarish sequence of complications that included 6 weeks with no knee at all, a broken hip and a total of five surgeries. Basically I was off my feet for most of six months. Not conducive to physical fitness.

With the help of a terrific physical therapist I worked very hard to get myself so I could go up and down steps and not walk with much of a limp. But when I got to that point, I kind of slacked off and really haven’t gotten my stamina and leg strength back to where it should be. I know this is a lousy excuse, but the emotional drain of my job was keeping me from really hitting the gym like I should. No more excuses!

So today I took off for a walk in the cemetery that borders my house. Margaret, the PT, suggested that I get trekking poles, to help me with my balance as I recovered. I love them! They take quite a bit of strain off my knees, help me with balance so I can keep propelling myself down the road at a much faster pace than I could without them, and I’ve read that they’re good for a 30% bump in the aerobic value of your walk. They’re also essential for me if I have to walk uneven ground. I highly recommend them. I got ming from REI, their least expensive, in-house brand. They’re height adjustable and feature shock absorbing springs.

The cemetery is a great place to walk. Quiet, no traffic and really beautiful, they have only developed about half the land they own, leaving the rest fallow, it’s like living next to a tall grass prairie. Today I had my headphones on and my iPod setting the cadence for me, but sometimes I leave it behind so I can hear the mixture of sounds created by the juxtaposition of nature and suburban sprawl traffic. You have this beautiful woodsy environment sitting on the corner of one of the busiest intersections in the Northwest Suburbs.

I’m rambling. I’ll keep you updated on my efforts at getting back in shape. Don’t hold your breath for any marathons though.

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