I remember when I was in high school and a girl on our basketball had torn her ACL for the second time. I remember thinking, wow that must absolutely be horrible to do it once, but twice?
Well now that I have been through it twice, I do have to say the second time is much easier, as easy as it can be. I know what to expect with pain, swelling, I know how much I can actually push myself and I absolutely KNOW I can come back. That was the majority of the fear with the first ACL injury, that I would never be able to play rugby again, or run again…cause that is what all doctors try to say to you. I think they tell you that so you won’t ride your bike up a mountain (La Chaser! What what!) or go wake boarding the first month after your surgery, but still…its scary to think that you might never be at your full potential again.
But I and others are here to say, you will be back to your full potential, and if you work hard, you should be stronger than when you started. I mean really, my left ACL is a mere 4 months old and my right ACL is almost 3 now. Time is of course the hardest part, because these days athletes are exceeding expectations left and right…but time cannot be changed.
So my amazing roommate turned me on to a , a Heisman candidate and all star quarterback from Oregon. This website is unique in that Dennis tore his ACL December 2007 and is a hopeful NFL prospect, so he has been documenting his recovery, rehab and workouts. It seems to be updated weekly, but hasn’t really been updated for the month of April. Its a great site and I am going to start visiting more often it and stealing some of his rehab!!
Anyways, I played touch for the first time at practice on Wednesday, and I have to say…it was amazing! Finally to get out there, run, “hit” (as much as you hit in touch) and feel like a part of a team…I have missed that feeling the most. My teammates have been building, growing and its been exciting to watch, but I always have that feeling that I am not quite involved. After touch we did a cool down and we played the West U23’s favorite game…Chicken in a Hen House!! Love this game, and the old gimp here got second place with the help of Kraft, losing to the speedy Bags and and Tiffany!
Good times, so training and rehab have been going well, hitting the gym more frequently (my work hours changed and that helped gym time alot) and have been training with Jake as well. He is back into the routine where running shoes or a rugby bag means he gets to play. For the first month or so of recovery, he didn’t understand why tennis shoes meant he couldn’t come. So now that I am able to be almost as active as I want, he is back in heaven! However, it doesn’t stop him from trying to entice me to go outside ALL the time, see pic to the right. Could you say no to that face, body language and sunshine?
I also have to write about a semi-sad event that happened to Jake the other day. His favorite toy by far is a yellow soccer ball that survived puppy hood, Oklahoma and now it has gone on to a better place. See how banged up and ragged it is (pic to left)? It didn’t matter to him that it was ragged, he would play for hours with it, begging you to kick it in the front yard.
He has gotten so good at blocking the ball (catching it) that I have really gotten good at chip kicking it over his head. 15 year of soccer is not wasted as Jake makes good use of my skills. Once he was over losing his yellow ball, I purchased him a replacement, another bright red soccer ball and so far he seems to be enjoying it!
Okay, what other news? Oh yes! Since I have been back in the gym more, I was surprised and pleased to find that I had reached my pre-surgery weight already! I know I had a goal of reaching it before my release date, but I am almost 2 months ahead of time! I was shocked when I did single leg press and 80pds was WAY to easy and 100pds was easy…but 120pds was doable. Also on the hamstring front, I am up to 30 pds on single leg and 60pd on both legs. Progress is good!
I think that is all for me at this point, next week look forward to WNT team camp in Philly, a post on my trying out for West Selectsides (just doing drills on Sunday after the LAU tournament), scores from the West All Star Selectside LAU Tournaemtn and more!pictures from the Austin Valkyries fundraiser, updates from the