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Question for John h

Posted by Kathy G on 6/12/02 at 13:52 (087327)

John,

I just did a search under John, capital J, h, lower case h, and it came up with over 200 hits! So, I am going to ask you this rather than wade through all the postings because I am basically lazy!

Are you the John h that had all the surgery done for PF and its complications? How long have you had PF? You mention going to the gym 4-5 times a week. What is your exercise regime? How long after your initial diagnosis were you able to start it?

I would so love to get to a point where I could just walk for fitness again. I'm not a fanatic. I just did 20 minutes on the treadmill, every other day, and my normal, everyday walking. I get kind of discouraged. I mean, the pain in my heels is so much better than a year ago when I gave up my job, but I still can't walk or stand for any amount of time.

Thanks for any response! By the way, speaking of fanatics, it's a dreary, dark day here in NH, about 50 degrees, with off and on showers. My husband left to play golf, just as I had to turn the heat on, it had gotten so damp and cold in the house. The heavens just opened and we are having torrential rain at the moment. He plays a nine-hole golf course, I wonder how far he is from the clubhouse!!!

Re: Question for John h

nancy s. on 6/12/02 at 17:46 (087350)

if the search feature could handle it (which it can't), you'd probably come up with 20,000 hits for john h. He's always had a lot to say and still does. and some of it is even true!
nancy

Re: Question for John h

john h on 6/12/02 at 22:12 (087398)

yes Nancy 20,000 would be closer. I am john h. I have bi-laterial Pf for 7 years (probably from running). I had surgery on one foot (PF and TTS release). No complications. Some improvement but not enough. 4 eswt treatments. I have never stopped walking at least a mile except for about a month when I had surgery. at the gym i usually ride the bike for 30 minutes, walk 1-3 miles, and do 30 min to an hour of stretching (non weight bearing), weights, and various machines. When time permits I will do this 3-4 times a week. Pre PF I did it 7 times a week and ran 30 miles a week. never limped or had to use crutches except for two weeks after surgery. highest pain level 6. lately around a 1. flareups common over the past years.

Re: Question for John h

Kathy G on 6/13/02 at 08:30 (087434)

Hi John,

Wow, I'm impressed! So you don't think that continuing to walk impeded your recovery? Or do you think you never truly recover - just get to a point to where the pain is tolerable or less? Each time I attempt to go back to my normal activity, it seems I regress. My heel pain hasn't been as bad for the last two or three weeks, although my arches aren't any better. Anyhow, I was thinking of taking a walk today. I guess the only thing I can do is take a chance. I have lousy luck with the stationery bike - I mess up my back every time I try it and it takes weeks to get back to normal. But, man, I really miss getting exercise!

Thanks for adding to your multiple postings by answering me!

Re: Question for John h

Carole C in NOLA on 6/13/02 at 11:49 (087459)

Kathy, according to the doctors that answered a post of mine (in the Ask the Doctors part of this message board), almost all their patients completely, truly, recover using conservative means such as described in the heel pain book on this site. This includes those that come to them who have had PF for many years.

I can't imagine anyone with PF who doesn't miss getting exercise. Rest is part of conservative treatment, as you know, and from what I've read here I am convinced that for many or most of us it's an essential part of conservative treatment. But at some point, your feet will be well enough to resume exercise. So how do you find out when? It's difficult to know for sure, sometimes. The fact that whenever you try to go back to normal activity, your feet regress, tells me that your feet still need rest to continue healing.

If you do decide to exercise more, please begin gradually and pay attention to how your feet respond to it (remember it often takes a few days to be able to tell). You will need all the patience you can muster, because you will be building your muscles back up, after all the rest, and if you go to fast you can not only injure your feet, but also other parts of you that aren't used to it. Be ready to say to yourself, 'OK, I know I will be able to exercise soon but I started too early', or 'I need to back off on this for a while' if that turns out to be the case.

If you are patient, when your feet are ready for exercise and when you start it very gradually, they won't regress.

Hope this helps.

Carole C

Re: Question for John h

john h on 6/13/02 at 19:52 (087508)

Kathy: No, I expect I will continue to have setbacks as that has been the pattern for years. Overall my pain level has come down over the years or I have adjusted to pain. One never can be sure. My personal feelings are that unless your feet are really really hurting you just cannot give up all activity. Your leg muscles and feet can atrophy somewhat and somehow you got to keep moving if at all possible. As you know activity also fights off depression and anxiety as well as keeping the heart active. About 15 years ago my neighbor retired. All he did every day was sit in his driveway. He wold not walk a block. I tried and tried to get him to walk. Now he cannot walk and is in a wheelchair largely as a result of zero activity.

Re: Question for John h

Kathy G on 6/14/02 at 10:19 (087582)

Well, I'm going to try to post but I had this lovely, long, boring post all set to go when AOL cut me off! I'll have to try again. Maybe it was some sort of message. You know, 'Keep it short, stupid!'

Thank you, John and Carole, for your responses. I suspect, if I did a search under my name, I would find that on a fairly regular basis, I have asked people about exercise and PF. It always happens on days such as yesterday, when my feet don't feel that bad, and I have so much energy that I am aching to do something, but afraid that I'll just regress if I do. It's like I need a veteran, like you, John, to tell me it's OK to exercise!

What I did yesterday will come as no surprise to the women. I decided to go shopping! I really walked a great deal. I went to a super-sized Kohl's, food shopping and to the mall. While at the mall, I walked nearly the entire length of it. I felt like a senior-citizen mallwalker, but they, unfortunately, can walk circles around me! Anyway, today my feet don't feel bad at all, so I will show great restraint and try to take it easy.

I agree with you about movement, John, and except for a few months when I first stopped work and my feet were terrible, I have always tried to get a minimal amount of exercise. One of my great fears is that the muscles in my legs and feet will atrophy so I probably have overdone it more often than I should. Like you, I believe that I will always have pain in my feet and I've gotten to the point where I just accept it and try to keep my activities to a level that won't make the pain too extreme.

Part of my problem is that I forget that one can exercise for small blocks of time - it doesn't have to be 30 minutes all at once. If I get discouraged, I think back to what I could do a year ago (or not do a year ago) and I realize that I have made great strides. (No pun intended!) I try not to think about when I was able to do Sweatin' to the Oldies for 45 minutes 3-4 times a week. No kidding, Richard Simmons may annoy some people but that was the best shape I was ever in and it was the most fun I had exercising!

Thanks for letting me vent and for reaffirming my theory that it's OK to be active and have some pain and I won't become crippled for life if I do!
OK - AOL didn't knock me offline so I guess this post is acceptable!

Re: Question for John h

nancy s. on 6/12/02 at 17:46 (087350)

if the search feature could handle it (which it can't), you'd probably come up with 20,000 hits for john h. He's always had a lot to say and still does. and some of it is even true!
nancy

Re: Question for John h

john h on 6/12/02 at 22:12 (087398)

yes Nancy 20,000 would be closer. I am john h. I have bi-laterial Pf for 7 years (probably from running). I had surgery on one foot (PF and TTS release). No complications. Some improvement but not enough. 4 eswt treatments. I have never stopped walking at least a mile except for about a month when I had surgery. at the gym i usually ride the bike for 30 minutes, walk 1-3 miles, and do 30 min to an hour of stretching (non weight bearing), weights, and various machines. When time permits I will do this 3-4 times a week. Pre PF I did it 7 times a week and ran 30 miles a week. never limped or had to use crutches except for two weeks after surgery. highest pain level 6. lately around a 1. flareups common over the past years.

Re: Question for John h

Kathy G on 6/13/02 at 08:30 (087434)

Hi John,

Wow, I'm impressed! So you don't think that continuing to walk impeded your recovery? Or do you think you never truly recover - just get to a point to where the pain is tolerable or less? Each time I attempt to go back to my normal activity, it seems I regress. My heel pain hasn't been as bad for the last two or three weeks, although my arches aren't any better. Anyhow, I was thinking of taking a walk today. I guess the only thing I can do is take a chance. I have lousy luck with the stationery bike - I mess up my back every time I try it and it takes weeks to get back to normal. But, man, I really miss getting exercise!

Thanks for adding to your multiple postings by answering me!

Re: Question for John h

Carole C in NOLA on 6/13/02 at 11:49 (087459)

Kathy, according to the doctors that answered a post of mine (in the Ask the Doctors part of this message board), almost all their patients completely, truly, recover using conservative means such as described in the heel pain book on this site. This includes those that come to them who have had PF for many years.

I can't imagine anyone with PF who doesn't miss getting exercise. Rest is part of conservative treatment, as you know, and from what I've read here I am convinced that for many or most of us it's an essential part of conservative treatment. But at some point, your feet will be well enough to resume exercise. So how do you find out when? It's difficult to know for sure, sometimes. The fact that whenever you try to go back to normal activity, your feet regress, tells me that your feet still need rest to continue healing.

If you do decide to exercise more, please begin gradually and pay attention to how your feet respond to it (remember it often takes a few days to be able to tell). You will need all the patience you can muster, because you will be building your muscles back up, after all the rest, and if you go to fast you can not only injure your feet, but also other parts of you that aren't used to it. Be ready to say to yourself, 'OK, I know I will be able to exercise soon but I started too early', or 'I need to back off on this for a while' if that turns out to be the case.

If you are patient, when your feet are ready for exercise and when you start it very gradually, they won't regress.

Hope this helps.

Carole C

Re: Question for John h

john h on 6/13/02 at 19:52 (087508)

Kathy: No, I expect I will continue to have setbacks as that has been the pattern for years. Overall my pain level has come down over the years or I have adjusted to pain. One never can be sure. My personal feelings are that unless your feet are really really hurting you just cannot give up all activity. Your leg muscles and feet can atrophy somewhat and somehow you got to keep moving if at all possible. As you know activity also fights off depression and anxiety as well as keeping the heart active. About 15 years ago my neighbor retired. All he did every day was sit in his driveway. He wold not walk a block. I tried and tried to get him to walk. Now he cannot walk and is in a wheelchair largely as a result of zero activity.

Re: Question for John h

Kathy G on 6/14/02 at 10:19 (087582)

Well, I'm going to try to post but I had this lovely, long, boring post all set to go when AOL cut me off! I'll have to try again. Maybe it was some sort of message. You know, 'Keep it short, stupid!'

Thank you, John and Carole, for your responses. I suspect, if I did a search under my name, I would find that on a fairly regular basis, I have asked people about exercise and PF. It always happens on days such as yesterday, when my feet don't feel that bad, and I have so much energy that I am aching to do something, but afraid that I'll just regress if I do. It's like I need a veteran, like you, John, to tell me it's OK to exercise!

What I did yesterday will come as no surprise to the women. I decided to go shopping! I really walked a great deal. I went to a super-sized Kohl's, food shopping and to the mall. While at the mall, I walked nearly the entire length of it. I felt like a senior-citizen mallwalker, but they, unfortunately, can walk circles around me! Anyway, today my feet don't feel bad at all, so I will show great restraint and try to take it easy.

I agree with you about movement, John, and except for a few months when I first stopped work and my feet were terrible, I have always tried to get a minimal amount of exercise. One of my great fears is that the muscles in my legs and feet will atrophy so I probably have overdone it more often than I should. Like you, I believe that I will always have pain in my feet and I've gotten to the point where I just accept it and try to keep my activities to a level that won't make the pain too extreme.

Part of my problem is that I forget that one can exercise for small blocks of time - it doesn't have to be 30 minutes all at once. If I get discouraged, I think back to what I could do a year ago (or not do a year ago) and I realize that I have made great strides. (No pun intended!) I try not to think about when I was able to do Sweatin' to the Oldies for 45 minutes 3-4 times a week. No kidding, Richard Simmons may annoy some people but that was the best shape I was ever in and it was the most fun I had exercising!

Thanks for letting me vent and for reaffirming my theory that it's OK to be active and have some pain and I won't become crippled for life if I do!
OK - AOL didn't knock me offline so I guess this post is acceptable!