My First Workout After Achilles Tendon Surgery (Athlete Journal 2)

I did my first workout post-surgery, and am finding I feel better if I’m moving, even if I need to modify exercises.

I’m at ten days post-op now and just went in to see the doctor for a follow-up appointment. One thing he said really stuck with me: apparently I will be at my weakest point around fourteen days after surgery.

Immediately after surgery, the sutures are firmly in place, keeping everything together. As they dissolve, my tendon will be weaker before things start to mend on their own. I had been experimenting around with some workouts after surgery, but will definitely taper it down at the fourteen-day mark and work my way back into it slowly.

I feel my best when I’m moving around, even if I have to modify. The three-legged bear crawl is becoming one of favorite total body warmup drills.

My first real workout after my surgery was more just experimenting to see what I was capable of doing while still keeping my foot and ankle secure:

  • Assisted TRX Pullups – Felt just like the real thing!
  • Kettlebell Overhead Press – I find that it is still possible to perform these just as I did before the injury, but with a smaller kettlebell and from either a tall kneeling position or from seated on the floor.
  • Single Leg Deadlift on the Good Leg – I keep hearing that you can stimulate your muscles on the injured side by working the good side, so I’m going for it.
  • Kettlebell Row – Slight modification with both feet off the ground.
  • Single Leg Kneeling Hip Stability Drill – This one was actually very challenging on both sides. But I was trying to find a way to continue to challenge my hip stability while my right leg is out of commission.

I mostly stuck to sets of five reps and didn’t really shoot for any specified number of sets this time around. I just wanted to see what I could do after three weeks off. I also played around with some push ups, L-sits, single leg bridges, and some left side shrimp squats.

Anyone else out there with some suggestions on creative ways to modify or supplement certain lifts?

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