How To Find Motivation to Exercise After A TKR

Hi everyone. Usually, it is easy to back out of exercising. Many people continually make excuses about why they don’t exercise. However, I want to share some great ways on how to find motivation to exercise after a tkr. Read on…

Be diligent in doing your exercises while recuperating from your total knee replacement and you will get excited about what used to be difficult when moving your body. Why? You will reap your rewards. Here’s my take on the issue….

* You will love how thrilling it is to be able to walk without pain.

* It is great to have what is known as a ‘normal’ walking gait without walking aides.

* It is fantastic to be able to walk fast enough to get out of breath and work up a sweat. (To some this would be “speed walking”. I like to think of it as walking faster than I did prior to my tkr.)

* It is wonderful to be able to walk trails, take in the scenery, and smell the air without feeling any joint pain.

* It is a nice feeling knowing that you are getting the most out of your total knee replacement surgery.

* It is so welcoming to have clothes fit better. I know, in my case, there were times when my dryer shrunk too many clothes. 😕

All of these combine to provide motivation in staying with, or starting, an exercise program.

Hope this helps you get motivated to exercise after your tkr (or any time, for that matter).

Always remember to be grateful you can walk.

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AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots’ Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other physicality concerns.

This site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr patient who has been living with various physicalities for over 40+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.







Badminton & A TKR

The other day a group of us put together a badminton game. People were asked if they wanted to play, and if so, teams were put together. It sounded like fun, so I went for it.

As we were choosing teams and badminton racquets, the thought about my tkr came into my mind. I hadn’t played any sports since my surgery, about 16 months ago (February 2008). I remember before my tkr how I couldn’t play anything like badminton or tennis since my knee would twist and cause extensive pain. I was curious to see how it would go since my new bionic knee and I have developed a very nice friendship. 🙂

What a blast! I didn’t turn quickly. Come to think of it, I didn’t move quickly. Sometimes by the time I got to the birdie, I was looking down at the ground at it. 🙁 What I lacked in speed and agility, I made up for in sound effects. Those came automatically and turns out were the life of the game. (Doesn’t everyone yell “HA!” when scoring? Or, “Loser!” when someone misses the birdie?) 😕

It was a real workout and I was totally pooped afterwards. Badminton was the perfect tension for me. The birdie is so light that there was no forceful returns (when I completed a return instead of watching it whiz by). A nice, easy lob. Tennis would have been too difficult.

Can’t wait to play again. 🙂

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Did I Cry During TKR Physical Therapy? Is The Pope Catholic?

Another question I recently received from one of my readers was asking me if I ever cried during PT? My answer….Is The Pope Catholic?

I would sit in my room, with the door closed, and sob. The pain was unbearable. No matter what I did, it hurt. It hurt to stand up, it hurt to sit down, to exercise, to attempt walking. And, none of the so-called “pain meds” worked.

The first week after my tkr, the pain was so bad, one day when my physical therapist was to visit, I called her and cancelled. I was crying when I called. The thought of her coming and yanking on me was too much to handle. The pain was not controllable. Even ice didn’t help at that point.

That was a mistake. She came over faster than I could shake a leg (if I could at the time). “One thing you’ll realize is….never cancel a physical therapy appointment. You need it more than ever now,” she said.

She was sympathetic and massaged my tkr area while making reassuring conversation. Wow…I didn’t know it could feel so good. It calmed both my soul and pain level. What a difference.

Then, she snuck in some exercises. They were easier then. It was then I learned about taking a pain med 30 minutes prior to pt.

So…yes, we all cry when going through physical therapy – “pain and torture”. If someone tells you that they don’t…they’re lying or are too drugged to know the difference.

As Debi, a favorite reader of mine, commented: “stock up on tissues”. Or, in my case, wear long sleeves.

Hope this helps others going through the same thing.

If you found this article helpful, I’d appreciate it if you would share with others…Thanks!

AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots’ Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other physicality concerns. The site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr patient who has been living with various physicalities for over 30+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.






To Twitter Or Not To Twitter?

A while back I wrote a blog post about being confused regarding how popular Twitter was. It seemed like another online way to lose one’s privacy. Well, I use it now and have been for about two months.

Why? I found out that some people, who I admire, use it very successfully. So, upon giving it a try…I can say that it is fun. Of course, I get those who are wanting to make a buck by simply telling how great their products are. I am especially entertained with these, “I’ll show you how to make xxx money in a short time! Pay xx for my priceless information. Don’t live paycheck to paycheck anymore!” these people claim. Yeah, right. Seems like the writer is living paycheck to paycheck.

Anyways, I have just touched the surface with Twitter. For the time being, it serves my need fine. Besides, it’s fun to say “read my tweet”. 🙂

Just thought I’d throw this in for no particular reason other than it was on my list of things to write about. Hope you enjoyed it.

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Buying a Desk Foot Rest & TKR

Some of you have asked me if I had any information about where to buy foot rests that can be used under a desk. The rests are intended to elevate the tkr leg and keep the swelling down.

I purchased one in excellent condition at my local thrift store. It cost me a whopping $3. There is not even a scratch on it. So…I would recommend looking in thrift stores or consignment shops (although these stores charge more than thrift stores).

Seeing that times are tight for many, there are other ways to stretch the dollar while finding good bargains. Visiting garage sales, estate sales, or simply by letting friends know you’re in the market for one are good ideas. Auctions may be of service, also.

Check out your local Craig’s List, under ‘For Sale’, Sporting. I found a recumbent bike in excellent condition that way. Plus, the sellers only lived ½ mile away and they delivered. 🙂 Nice… You may also want to check under Free, since I have seen tons of exercise equipment just being given away in this category.

And, if you want to buy an unpacked, new foot rest for your tkr leg….Office supply stores, department stores, or superstores such as WalMart are your best bet. Some deliver, just check it out.

Hope this helps….Good luck!!

P.S. I also wrote a blog post a while ago about how to elevate your leg while sitting at a desk without using a specially made foot rest. All methods worked for me. It’s all here somewhere. 🙂

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AUTHOR NOTE: Booktoots’ Healing helps total knee replacement patients find support throughout recuperation and beyond. Its mission is for patients to understand they are not alone in their ordeal with either a tkr or other physicality concerns. The site is owned and operated by Marie Buckner, a published author and tkr patient who has been living with various physicalities for over 30+ years. She enjoys sharing her experiences to help others going through the same thing.






Swelling 15 Months After A TKR

Hi my favorite readers! One of the most common concerns I hear about from readers who have had a total knee replacement is that of swelling. It seems that throughout the recuperation process, this is an area of interest. I know in my case, I was expecting my tkr knee swelling to go down after just a few months.

Think again. It is common for my tkr knee to swell after exercise, but my surgery was almost 16 months ago. And, it still swells up and requires icing. I’m not complaining, just stating a fact.

The last couple of weeks there has been increased swelling due to the fact that I am kicking some butt with my new ortho shoes. 🙂 For the first time in 30 plus years, I can walk without pain – like an “ordinary” person. And, my recuperation is at a point that I can have a “normal” gait. Woohoo!!! So…I am taking advantage of it.

I was told by my doctor, at my year follow-up, that my knee may be swollen for the rest of my life. It was nothing to be concerned about. Hmm. Can’t wait for bathing suit season. NOT!! (That was my attempt at a joke).

Hope this helps others who are going through the same thing. Think of the alternatives and be grateful. 🙂

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Adding A Boost To Walking After a TKR

Just recently, as my walking speed has been able to increase, I have noticed that I can throw in a new move. During my total knee replacement recuperation process, I tried doing this previously, but was unable to due to the pain and decreased mobility issues. 🙁

The move is similar to that used when one is marching. (Yes, I was in a marching band for years. Me and my flute alongside all my band buddies.) 🙂 Let’s see if I can describe it, for the marching novices among us…

As my right leg takes a step, my upper torso is directed towards my right. And vice versa. It makes for a great workout while walking. It is what I call a “gentle marching movement”. It’s the kind you see when the marching band passes by in a parade while not playing their instruments. What even makes it more fun is the fact John Philip Sousa marches seem to pop into my head while taking my “walks”. Let the records show that I am a Sousa addict. Nothing like a good “Semper Fi (Semper Fidelis)” to get the blood flowing! 🙂

What makes this better than anything, though, is the fact that it’s a vast improvement over where I have been during my tkr recuperation. This movement has only been possible within the last month. So, it took 14 months to get this far.

If you are at the stage of your tkr recuperation that allows this movement, go for it. You may enjoy it. 🙂

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Adding Some Fun To Exercising

Riding my upright bike during my tkr recuperation process is just not fun. I like seeing how I improve, but it still takes a few pedaling rounds to get to the point of where I can move at a decent speed. It’s all part of the process, though. I’m grateful to have my bike since it provides such a good tkr exercise. I found a way to make it all a little more fun, however….

Add a rubber duck head to the hand bars. Whenever the pain is to the point of needing to be verbalized, simply squeeze the duck and it will let out a sound that will cover up the verbage. 🙂

NOTE: This can only be done, though, when you’ve reached a point in your tkr recuperation that you’re not holding on for dear life to the handlebars. Even though I don’t pedal at lightning speed like a fiend, I have reached the point of being able to hold on with one hand while squeezing the duck with the other.

When the pain is not that bad, I simply squeeze the duck’s nose. It gives off a softened “quack!” much like the sound made by a rubber duck toy. When the pain is more intense, though…the big guns are brought in. That deserves a head squeeze which gives off a full fledge, much louder “QUACK!”

For safety reasons, my rubber duck head is wearing a helmet.

Whatever it takes.

P.S. No killing of ducks was done to make this rubber duck head alarm. 🙂

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Another Long Overdue Improvement in A TKR

Where does the time go? It’s coming up to 15 months after my total knee replacement surgery. Although, during the first 10 months I could say….”Man, is this ever going to end?!” As we all know, who have been through it, the recuperation is a total bear. However, here is some good news….

The other night I was laying down and lifted my tkr leg and bent it. With it bent, I laid my leg down sideways onto the surface. Then, I stretched out my groin muscles. I hope I’m describing this well. It felt great. I just laid there for a while, it felt so incredibly good to be able to stretch out those muscles!

Suddenly, I realized….”Hey…I couldn’t even do this before. Wow! I must be improving!” I tried so many times throughout my recuperation process to do that movement, but it was far too painful. I figured the time just wasn’t right, but always hoped that I would reach the point where the movement came easily.

And, here it is. 🙂 It is only after all the exercise, griping and moaning (and I do mean GRIPING AND MOANING! – not that I wasn’t grateful, it’s just that sometimes it seems so fruitless), and keeping the faith that it has happened. It has not been easy by any means.

This can be considered an exercise, now that I think about it. 🙂

Hopefully this blog post will help others going through the same thing. I don’t want to sound like I am bragging, but – believe me – I’ll take any accomplishment I can. And, I like to share them with others who may be going through the same thing.

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Quick & Healthy Eats

Standing up for an extended period of time is difficult for the tkr patient during the first couple weeks after having surgery. The first week post-tkr it is highly recommended to have someone else prepare and serve your meals. However, after that you may be on your own. What are you supposed to do to feed yourself without causing too much discomfort? If you are not lucky enough to have someone serve and prepare your meals, here are a couple quick feed ideas:

Cottage cheese. Have a serving of cottage cheese (usually about ½ cup) combined with some chopped tomato and pineapple chunks. For an attractive place setting, place the cottage cheese in the center of the plate and surround it with the tomato on one side and the pineapple on the other side.

I also like mixing some tuna in with the cottage cheese and sprinkling it with garlic powder. Combined with the tomatoes…yumm. Of course, the pineapple is eaten separately. 🙂

A friend of mine enjoys just placing some cottage cheese onto toast and sprinkling it with cinnamon. She likes that for either breakfast, a snack, or a quick pick-me-up after exercising.

Hope this helps.

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