Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Three Weeks Post Surgery

I finally got on the road bike for the first time since the surgery. It was last Saturday exactly 19 days post surgery. As far as I can tell this is a World Record for riding a bike so soon after total hip replacement. I welcome anyone to scour the internet or ask  their doctor to find anyone who has done this earlier. As I mentioned a few posts ago the surgeon gave me the OK to do anything I wanted with the new hip.. So if I was into  robbing a bank I could do it without any crutches or a cane if I felt up to it.

I pumped up the tires, filled the water bottle, put on my Saturday best cycling clothes and climbed aboard the bike for a nice easy 10 mile very flat out and back loop I often ride from the house. The link to the stats from the ride >>> http://connect.garmin.com/activity/14422882 . One item of note was a clicking sound as I peddled I had never heard before and wasn't sure it was something mechanical with the bike or the new hip. The rest of the day I spent recovering  from the effort.

I continue walking with the assistance of one cane and still can't seem to get rid of an aching pain I have in the leg which I mostly feel at night. Very annoying. I am told from someone who had their hip replaced about six months ago this is common and by the fourth week it should go away. I am still mostly sleeping on my back which is OK until about 4 or 5 in the morning when I can't take it any more, trying to then sleep on my slide without much success. I will be going to work tomorrow for the first time so my scam is over.

Today I took my second bike ride, exactly three weeks after surgery. I added three extra miles on a similar route as the first ride. This time I wanted to put out a greater effort as I felt comfortable I wasn't going to break the new hip or any of the muscles or tendons surrounding it. I ride this route quite frequently and usually average around 18 mph for  the ride with an average heart rate of 150 beats a minute. I  really pushed myself today and wound up with  a fairly slow 13.8 mph  average at the same 150 heart rate. So I was working as hard as I usually do with much slower results. It is like I am getting on a bike for the first time. When I got home I was so exhausted I passed out for two hours. The stats for the 2nd ride  >>> http://connect.garmin.com/activity/14629968. This time there was no clicking sound so I won't have to take my bike to the shop or hip to the surgeon for repairs.

Anyway that is it for week three.


  1. Andy says; Congratulations on the progress. Although I still think you're crazy the way you push yourself. Keep up the good work.

  2. Andy, thanks. I am careful in a way. Since I am riding mostly on roads without anything close to a hill I am not putting much pressure on the hip, mostly just spinning. There are a couple of spots where the roads are an overpass and there is a slight incline and it is amazing how weak not only the surgical leg is but both legs are very weak. It is like I am starting from scratch and have never ridden a bike before.

    1. I also just had total hip replacement 3&1/2 weeks ago walking just fine without my cane.I'm cannot wait to get on my motorcycle. I'm 41,5'7,132lbs. Any advise cause I feel I can do it. But don't want to over do it. U know what I mean? :)

  3. Congrats on the bike ride, but get over yourself. I know lots of people who were stationary cycling less than two weeks after surgery.

  4. Anonymous, thanks for the comment and interest.

    I don't think you can compare riding a stationary bike indoors with biking outdoors on the road. I don't find it unusual at all for someone to be on a stationary bike (indoors) at two weeks or less.

    For most anyone who is having physical therapy not just for hip replacement but for any lower body injury, riding a stationary bike is typically the first exercise. Not only is it a good lower body warm up but it helps to improve range of motion. Usually from there the patient goes on to several more exercises. Typically the stationary bike warm up is about 5 or 6 minutes which equates to about one mile.

    Even if someone were to spend 45 minutes on a stationary bike or the equivalent of approximately 10 miles I don't it comes anywhere close to the challenges of riding a similar distance on the road.

    All this said, even though I can't seem to find anyone else on the internet or from my doctor who has ridden approximately 10 miles or more so close to THR surgery I don't consider it that much of a big deal. I just received an email yesterday from someone who's father in law had THR surgery at 8:30am and walked out of the hospital at 5:30pm that very day with just the aid of a single cane. My bosses father, at about 70 had both hips replaced at the same time and was walking with only the aide of a cane two weeks later.

    Both these surgeries were done using the relatively recent mini-invasive anterior approach (from the front). Mine was a different approach. While the long result is the same with this approach the short term results are much better with the patient recovering much faster with less chance of dislocation,considerably less pain and more range of motion.

    So I wouldn't be surprised to hear someone having the anterior approach and going outside on a bike doing a decent ride even a week after surgery.

  5. Keep rest for the yourself. Fast relief after many days.

    Knee replacement