I've got a series of balance and resistance band exercises along with stretches. For sure, I can use the stationary bike, elliptical and strength training machines. To my surprise, I was also told to get on the treadmill and start power hiking at an incline. Basically, I can add new activities to rotate over the next couple of weeks, icing after each workout.
The doc also took me through a very cool drill that I want to pass on to all - especially the trail runners out there who have weak ankles or are prone to sprains. Put eight cups (or the many water bottles most runners have filling up cupboards) spaced out on the floor in a semi circle. Balance on one foot inside the semi circle. Close your eyes for a moment if you want a challenge.Bend down slowly and pick up one cup (yes, while balancing on the same leg). Straighten up slowly and repeat with the next cup. You remain on one leg the entire time. See how many cups you can pick up without losing balance. I was able to pick up all eight while standing on my good leg, but I couldn't do it without a lot of wobbling. This means I haven't been using several stabilizing muscles. On my injured leg, I could only pick up one safely. He also suggested that once I've mastered it I should try it on "demi pointe." I think HE thinks I'm still a dancer.
The question I was avoiding, of course, was "when can I start running?" I casually asked if I might be able to run a 5k by the end of the summer. The response was "I hope you'll be running a 5k by next month!" WHAT????? I thought I heard wrong. Nope, I'm supposed to add some jogging to my power walks after I can pick up all eight cups. And, he discouraged pavement running, telling me to find a nice trail, start hiking and gradually turn it into a run over the next several weeks. How exciting is that?
Many thanks to Rebecca who met me at the gym to get serious. She showed me how to use the elliptical - and I didn't fall off! 25 minutes on the elliptical and 20 minutes walking on the treadmill at a slight incline and I was done for the day. No swelling or pain, but I am blissfully tired.
Now, what fall race should I consider????