Sunday, May 20, 2012

ACL Reconstruction - Five Years

May 15, 2012 was the 5 year anniversary of my ACL surgery.  Five years!

The initial purpose of this blog was to interact and document my recovery from surgery and my return path to karate.  The anniversary posts are important to me.  They serve as a reminder of how far I have come and how fragile the human body can be.  I tore my ACL landing a jump during a two person form.  It was not a contact injury rather my body turned against itself.  My foot planted and my knee went in the opposite direction. 

The truth is that I have been thinking a lot about my knee lately.  I have been training hard and pushing my knee with intensity.  After some practice sessions, my knee feels gooey (it is the best word I can use to describe it).  I have been training on several different flooring surfaces - carpet, mat, padded surface. I have a variety of knee braces in my locker which I normally do not use.  Last month, I bought a thin brace at the drugstore after a knee challenging workout. The thin brace provides support without restricting movement.

And then there is jumping...

I have been hesitant to jump in kata since my recovery.  I do the jumps...kind of.  I added a column to my spreadsheet and listed the number of jumping techniques in kata (19) and the number of times you drop to one knee (13),  The numbers are approximate because I keep finding more.   The worst knee moment for me is landing a jump kick on my right (reconstructed ACL) leg.  I hesitate and hesitation is not good.  I am at a point in my training where I need to do the jumps.

Best of luck to all who are going through ACL surgery and recovery!  Thank you for all the emails over the past five years with your questions and comments.  Check out my ACL links page for more information.  If anyone would like to share their ACL success story and write a guest post, feel free to contact me. 

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Spreadsheet Karate

In my work life, everything has a spreadsheet:  sale forecasts, production plans, customer master lists, inventory, purchase orders, bookings and invoices.  At home,  I use spreadsheets to track my monthly expenses and balance my checkbook.  I even put my Christmas gift purchases on Excel.  Spreadsheets are easily converted into charts and graphs.  The rows, columns and cells help me stay organized.

Over the next two months, my goal is to be organized in my karate training.  I started a personal karate training log.  I considered using this blog as a place to record my training.  I decided against it because the post format would be cumbersome to scroll through.  I decided to create a spreadsheet.   I set up a separate worksheet for karate and kobudo. The far left column lists the name of the form - 19 open hand kata and 27 kobudo kata (8 different weapons).  The rows across the top are separated by week.

I recognize that spreadsheets are not for everyone.  My sister Kim is a creative person with a career in marketing/communications.  She designs websites and makes jewelry in her spare time.  Kim hates spreadsheets and does not use them for work or at home.

I don't know if I will even like or find a karate training spreadsheet useful.  Only time will tell...

Do you have a training journal?   Is it a spreadsheet?