60-day Recovery Status

So it has been 60-days since had heart surgery to replace my Aortic Valve which was deteriorating and was going to cause some kind of emergency event in my relatively near future if it was not replaced. Here is my initial post on that. All of of the phases so far with my recovery have been going well. That certainly does not mean they do not suck. There is plenty of suck to be had in all of this.

This is how I think my bike looks at me from it storage stand while I peloton.

During my first follow up visit with my heart surgeon cleared me for some very light work on my peloton. Right after Thanksgiving, I did my first gingerly workout on the peloton. I this point I could not even put my hands on the bars at that stage. Over the the next weeks the output levels climbed a lot quicker than my perceived effort did. By the time I had my follow up appointment with my cardiologist in Mid-December, I was definitely holding back. I was quite excited when my cardiologist cleared me to do more.

Tears of joy or sweat? Maybe some of both? It does not matter

After this is when some real improvements started to happen. One thing that was pretty clear when geeking out on pre vs post-surgery numbers was how much better my heart rate recovered when I “let off the gas”. It was not long until I was back in the range of my typical peloton workouts.

How I felt dropping a pre-surgery personal best

I was bit emotional, stoked and certainly whooped after a very special workout on January 2nd. I beat my personal best at a 60min effort set pre-surgery. The peloton allows you to basically race your best effort if you like. 20 minutes in I noticed I was neck and neck with my personal record and I was feeling good. The picture above is how I felt when I decided to go for it. I did not just edge out my best either, but pretty much dropped it. Boy did it feel great to have concrete evidence that I am going to be better and not just survive with aftermarket heart parts. That 60 minute was one of my “softer” personal records and I have a couple that are not going to go down easy.

Over the last few weeks I have been able to use the handlebars more and more. The sternum however is still not 100%. I am so over waiting for that thing to fully heal. The constant awareness of it and the routine degrees of discomfort has turned into a mental drag in addition to the physical discomfort. It is way better than it was and I know I’m over the hump on it healing but C’mon Man!

I should be back out my real bike within a month and it can’t come soon enough. I’m already thinking about which of the local tame trails will be best for the re-intro/shakedown ride.

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