Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Physical Therapy is Hard

I went for my second PT appointment yesterday. At the first one, he, the physical therapist mostly measured stuff, looked at me walk and do other stuff, and so on. He gave me an assignment to soak my foot in contrast baths. So I did that. It wasn't hard, though it took almost an hour a day.

This week's assignments are hard. I need to do stretching stuff and squatting stuff (partial squats), and they're the kind of thing that's hard for me. You know you see pictures of athletes holding huge weights on their shoulders doing deep squats? That's not me. But even these partial squats with no weights are hard for me.

Of course, I like my illusion that I'm decently fit given my age and all, but doing these assignments destroys that illusion pretty quickly. Deep down, I want the therapist to say, wow, you're doing great. But if I were doing great, I wouldn't need the help of a physical therapist, of course.

Like most people, I'm guessing, I like exercise that's easy, thus the bike. Yes, biking can be VERY hard, but I'm not riding up some Col in the Alps as fast as I can. In fact, I don't usually push myself really hard biking, especially during the winter.

So now I am going to get on my bike for a bit, and then do the stretchy stuff when I'm nice and warmed up. And then go give blood.

One interesting thing about yesterday's physical therapy visit: he had me warm up on a stationary bike (as opposed to writing letters on a stationery bike, I suppose) and although it had a huge and uncomfortable tractor seat which felt tilted forward so I was always leaning, but the hand rest was high so I wasn't in anything like my usual road position, it also had a watt thingy. I've never done anything (that I remember) with a watt thingy, so I mildly amused myself by playing with my watts. And while I am betting lying to myself I could add a lot of wattage if properly positioned, even on that terrible saddle I could do just over 100 watts pretty consistently for the four minute warmup.

Remember this ad? At the beginning, Andy Schleck claims he can get 899 watts, and then Alberto Contador says he can get 900. So that puts some perspective on my little 100 watts.

1 comment:

  1. Well, the big thing with PT is not whether or not you're fit -- and there are fit people who need PT for one reason or another -- but compliance. People who actually do the exercises are the ones who succeed. And there are a surprising number of people who don't.