Help me stop feeling like a decrepit old lady (exercise advice)

Ok, so I started a thread awhile ago about my knee which I injured in January. I haven’t updated it lately but, guess what? My knee is still messed up. As a matter of fact since going to physical therapy it’s more messed up than before. So much so that I started walking with a cane again because I feel like it’s going to give out on me and I had given up the cane about 3 months ago.

At any rate, because I have no health insurance I’m having to wait to get back into the doctor in order to get it fixed. In the meantime, though, I’m damn tired of tottering around and feeling like crap and I’d like to find some kind of exercise that I can do which won’t involve hurting my knee but might help me feel more like myself and maybe even help me lose some weight. For the record I’m a significantly overweight woman in my late 30s and I know you’re not my doctor or physical therapist, etc., etc… I used to do water aerobics which I love but the classes are on nights that I’m not available.

Any other ideas are welcome. Thanks!

Do you have a diagnosis on the knee? Some injuries respond better to exercise than others.

Weight lifting. I don’t normally recommend machines but you will probably do better to start there for the time being.

Aerobic. Rowing machine or arm ergometer(tabletop handcycle unit), you want to stay off the knee until it’s resolved.

The key is to establish the habit of moving. Even if you start with a few minutes a day, that will grow if you stick with it.

Water aerobics on your own, without an actual class? Just hit the pool and do the exercises? I can see that this might be a little dangerous, so, of course, don’t be in the pool all alone. But…what harm? Swim for fun, and benefit from the exercise.

How far can you walk? I’m all about the walking! A nice stroll, a gentle amble, work your way up to a walking routine… Next thing ya know, hiking trails!

When I have access to a pool I duplicate my hydro exercises. I took notes and know the routine :stuck_out_tongue: Though people look at me rather strangely because it combines walking in the water [only way I can walk without crutches is along one edge of the pool using the edge to steady myself and the water holding me up.] doing ‘deep knee bends’ and then a sort of treading of water but moving back and forth in the water.

Honestly, if we had the money I would get a classic pool put in the back field - 25 feet by 75 feet, with the classic shallow end/deep end configuration. Well, and also put it in a small building so I could use it all year long. Or maybe move to Florida where pools are common [inland, I don’t think I would care to spend the money to live on the beach, though my grandparents house on Casey Key was lovely]

Aerobics are your best bet. Like runner pat said, rowing and ergometer are both really useful. Rowing may put some strain on your knee if it’s a sliding version, but it’ll still help.

Also, if it’s bearable, get a compressive knee sleeve. They help shorten healing time, sometimes considerably. And if it’s a ligament injury, don’t push yourself. If it hurts, just stop. It’s much easier to regain flexibility in an injured knee after it’s healed than it is to maintain it while it’s injured and hurting and the muscles are locked around it trying to keep it stable. Keep it elevated whenever you’re not using it, by laying back in a chair and propping it up to a comfortable height. If you can get it the same height as your heart, even better. Walk as much as you can only until it starts hurting.

This this this. How much you are exercising in six months matters a lot more than how much you exercise tomorrow. Slow, slow, slow, and if you find yourself skipping sessions, go slower (or shorter). Expand your speed and/or duration in baby steps at a steady rate, but again, if you start skipping sessions, stop expanding for a while. The trick is to keep from dreading it.

First off, thanks everyone for the ideas.

And, no, no diagnosis yet although the Sports Medicine doctor at school suspected a torn meniscus. From what I’ve read of the symptoms I tend to agree.

Give a try to some of the leg machines except the leg extension. If the knee still hurts, don’t use that machine.
Don’t think you can tough through the pain, it’s a warning you’re doing more damage.

If the gym has a rowing machine, you can row one-legged, if needed.