My knee is buggered! It’s a technical term. If you have read all the episodes of this blog, you will know that I ruptured my anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) of my right knee in November 2013 during a hockey match. I had decided to build up the strength around the knee and defer surgery unless it was really necessary……. I played my first game of hockey for a year in November 2014 and after scoring a gift of a goal my knee went. I went down like a slow mo ham actor in a spaghetti western. I was gutted and in significant pain – back on the crutches for 2 days.

I wondered if I had made a mistake delaying the operation but on reflection, I now know my knee is too unstable and I definitely need the op. If I had gone straight to the operation I may have doubted the need for it, especially in the first couple of weeks post op which are very painful.

I have also had pause for thought about NHS and health insurance. Admittedly, I have gone with my choice of consultant (Prof Phil Turner at Stepping Hill Hospital) and because he is so good his list on the NHS is pretty long – it looks like I will be waiting until mid March before I actually get the surgery done!!! It feels like a long old journey. I could’ve gone to another consultant and whittled down the time a bit. I know if I had gone privately it would all be done by now. The plus side is that I can do a lot of prehab.

Prehab is obviously all the work that you can do pre-operatively to get you into the best shape for the operation and help get back to fitness afterwards. I have my bike in the kitchen up on a turbo trainer – it means I can cycle a couple of times a day to build up knee strength without relying on the weather. I know what I’m like and I would easily justify not going out if its raining/snowy/icy/windy/got a Y in the day/etc.

I’m trying out a muscle stimulator called kneehab. I have it on now as I write this blog – I am sat behind the reception desk in our physiotherapy clinic with my leg happily twitching away. I don’t really need it now, it’s really to help wake up the muscles after the op, but it amuses me.

I’m still swimming and it is getting a bit easier. When I think that 18months ago I could only do 1 and a half lengths of front crawl before surfacing like Neo in “The Matrix” all gasping for air. Now, I can do a full hour of swimming, mostly front crawl.

I still feel exhausted and I havn’t been every week ( see slacker title) but I am pretty chuffed. It pays off to stick at something then – who knew. The last time I went, I arranged to meet a couple of pals in the foyer of Moss Side Leisure centre after the swim. I did the swim and was feeling pretty chuffed. On getting dressed, I could not find my pants for love nor money. In the end, I shoved on my jeans and thought it would be ok to go commando just to my car. I pulled on my red woolly hat which colour matched my face at this point. As I joined my pals in the foyer, I had a terrible sinking feeling – literally. There was a mass moving down my leg on the inside of my jeans – for the love of all sanity what was it? Ahhhhhh, as the mass progressed a little further, I realised it was the lost pants and not a stray mouse in there.

Surrounded by people I was willing my thighs to swell and keep the offending item from dropping out onto the floor. By this time the bulge had reached the inside of my knee – nothing else for it, I bent down and cradled my knee as I walked out of the place in a Quasimodoesqe way. As soon as possible I dropped behind everyone, gave my leg a little shake and out came the pants. I quickly picked them up and threw them in the bin – I really have no idea why I didn’t put them in my pocket.

Have a great week everyone.