Wednesday, January 29, 2020

The Difference a Year Makes

Last January I took an Amtrak train ride with my grandson from Austin to Taylor.  I could walk and get where I wanted, but walking and standing were endurance tests.  If I walked longer distances, I had to "pause" regularly.  If I really wanted to get somewhere, I got there, but sometimes it was just plain hard.This photo shows what I looked like then.

During the February Laredo Bird Festival, a common comment to me was: "Knee?  It will be so much better when you replace it."  So, I decided it was finally time.  Surgery was scheduled at the end of April.  At a visit to my sleep doctor, I commented that I usually followed doctor's instructions . . . but weight was the exception.  He said, "I have a solution for that."  With some skepticism I started his diet program about a month before the surgery. I felt like I would recover from the surgery much faster if I got some of the weight off.  I started losing immediately.

Surgery day came.  Recovery included using a walker to get where I wanted to go. But . . . I got out and started doing short walks on smooth pavement with the walker.  I still had to pause.  After graduating from the walker, I walked the road by my house. The first time, I just went down to one end and back, pausing a few times there and back.  A little while later, I managed to walk to the main road and back, still with those little strategic pauses.

As the months passed, my walks got longer and stronger.  By Thanksgiving, my grandson and I took the long loops at the Heard Natural Science Museum and Wildlife Sanctuary. It was a 4 mile day!

Yesterday I took one of the longer loops at Berry Springs Park Preserve with my grandson.  He says I walk faster now.  Today I walked the road in front of my house.  I started at my house, went up the driveway, up to the main road, down to the end of the road, back to my driveway. No pauses.  What a victory I felt!  Then I went down to the pond and retrieved my game camera card.  It is so nice to be able to get around the property easily again.

I lost weight in 2005, 2006. I am now 30 pounds lighter than I was then.

This photo was taken by my grandson at a nearby park in the fall.  I am still working on better fitness and more weight loss. I am so grateful to be where I am.