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Partially Torn Achilles
Elk
Contributors to this thread:
Zim 26-Dec-22
Bigdog 21 26-Dec-22
Bigdog 21 26-Dec-22
BULELK1 27-Dec-22
grape 27-Dec-22
DanaC 27-Dec-22
Bou'bound 27-Dec-22
Zim 27-Dec-22
Beav 27-Dec-22
Charlie Rehor 27-Dec-22
Grey Ghost 27-Dec-22
Zim 27-Dec-22
Griz 27-Dec-22
grape 27-Dec-22
Bou'bound 27-Dec-22
Bowboy 27-Dec-22
Bigdog 21 27-Dec-22
midwest 27-Dec-22
Nock 27-Dec-22
Zim 27-Dec-22
Bigdog 21 27-Dec-22
jjs 27-Dec-22
azelkhntr 28-Dec-22
Steve Leffler 28-Dec-22
Zim 28-Dec-22
Bigdog 21 28-Dec-22
DL 29-Dec-22
Westy 06-Jan-23
deerhunter72 06-Jan-23
Zim 07-Jan-23
Mad Trapper 08-Jan-23
Mad Trapper 08-Jan-23
From: Zim
26-Dec-22
I'm 63 and have both my Achilles tendons partially torn, with bunched up fibers on each. My last elk hunt in Colorado this past September was really rough. My calves were so sore all the while I was stalking, I moved like a crippled old man. Not used to this, as I have jogged 20 miles/week for the last 40 years. Had been fit for so many years, but now declining as a result. Doc wanted to give me cortisone injections or whatever, but I don't believe in those long term. My GP agrees. I don't think I can run-n-gun elk productively any longer. So this past fall found myself tree stand hunting wallows 75% of the time. I beat 4 years of chronic plantar fasciitis and various other ailments, but I'm not optimistic about this one. The pain during my elk hunt, and even my November Midwest deer hunt, was annoying 24/7 while hiking, and often prevented me from sleeping adequately. Felt like spasms. I have the points for premium Western hunts for the next 5 consecutive years, but am expecting to have to gear these for tree stand hunting now as a result. I don't know what else to do. Did buy an ebike this summer to see if that might help.

I am curious if any of you have overcome this problem, and been able to continue run-n-gunning for elk. Or if it forced you to quit. I'm not really doing any therapy. Thanks.

From: Bigdog 21
26-Dec-22
I had same problem and went to therapy it help but not enough. Hurt to walk in muddy field putting out goose decoys are working 10 hrs . finally had surgery on it.. 6 months later like new no pain ,strain nothing like new.

From: Bigdog 21
26-Dec-22
Forgot this was last year 61. Years old.

From: BULELK1
27-Dec-22
Injuries and Divorce can change a guy's life for sure!!!

Keep the Faith Ken,

Robb

From: grape
27-Dec-22
I’ve ruptured both Achilles. Once at 38. Once at 71. Surgery on both. I’m happy to say I’m still climbing trees. BUT…. I workout religiously. That is the answer. I wish you well..

From: DanaC
27-Dec-22
Has your doc sent you to a specialist?

From: Bou'bound
27-Dec-22
Whatever you do for whatever reason keep one thing in mind

Exercise and workout regimens are for the purpose of keeping us in shape if things get to the point where the workouts break us down ……. stop

I’m not saying you’re there I’m just saying particular for those that I’ve exercised religiously for decades It becomes a habit that is done for habit by habit, and at some point it can become a source of the problem and no longer the solution or prevention of the problem it was initially intended to be.

From: Zim
27-Dec-22
DanaC, Yes after three years my right ankle aggravated me enough to tell my GP, who sent me to a podiatrist. He is the one who diagnosed it and suggested the cortisone. I declined, then six months later tore my left one. Have not revisited the doc to confirm, but quite obviously the same issue. The right one is now somewhat pain manageable, but the left one is worse. I know the body has its way of healing stuff over time, so that is what I’m hoping for. Better than my project manager friend at work who ruptured both his. Ugly scars. My doc did not really speak of treating mine with surgery. I rejoined my gym after Covid, and resumed with a lower exercise regiment. Just concerned after my recent CO hunt due to constant pain in terrain that was only mildly steep. Kind of worried about rupturing one the whole time as well. Would suck to spend 27 deer points in Utah for that to happen.

From: Beav
27-Dec-22
I had complete rupture of my Achilles day before I turned 50 last April playing in a basketball tournament. Been a long road but next week I am returning to the court to play basketball. You can recover from this especially if you were in that kind of shape.

27-Dec-22
Bou has it right. As I’ve aged (69) I’ve changed my workout to accommodate my weaknesses. What I do now is totally different than what I did 20 years ago but just as effective. All we can do is postpone the inevitable.

From: Grey Ghost
27-Dec-22
ZIM, I partially tore both of my Achilles in an e-bike mishap on my elk hunt 2 years ago. I stubbornly chose to hunt the remaining 4 days of the hunt, which obviously aggravated the situation. By season end I could barely walk up or down a set of stairs. I decided to let my body heal itself, so I refrained from any physical activities for 6 months. On the bright side, both Achilles healed. On the dark side, I’m still trying to lose the weight I gained during that period of inactivity.

Matt

From: Zim
27-Dec-22
Beav, I played recreational bball as well until age 52, when my back forced me to quit. This is probably why my Achilles wore out in the first place.

GG, Your experience sounds the most similar to mine. I gained weight as well. Some due to Covid gym closure, some due to Achilles mobility.

From: Griz
27-Dec-22
I am still recuperating from partially torn achilles tendons. I had surgery on the left in May and the right in June. I could barley walk and had to do something. The surgery is rough but my only effect right now is weak ankles and occasional calf cramps but I have begun working out again and it is helping a lot. Stretching is key. I am 59 and highly recomend getting the surgery and doing it while you can time your recovery before it tears completely and ruins a season for you. Due to some other issues I cut it close on the second surgery for our PA bow season but I made it. Also, be careful wit hthe ortho boot they put you in. Walking off kilter can do horrible things to your back and I really suffered with sciata pain down both legs for a while.

From: grape
27-Dec-22
Getting old is a bitch, but I chose to go down swinging. I can’t do what I did 30 years ago. I have lots of friends that watch tv well and go to the casinos. They also couldn’t climb a tree if they had to. Be smart with what you do. Keep moving. If you haven’t been exercising, don’t try to do it all at once. In some cases, sitting is as bad as smoking. I’ll get off the pulpit now. I wish you all well. Greg

From: Bou'bound
27-Dec-22
Whatever you do for whatever reason keep one thing in mind

Exercise and workout regimens are for the purpose of keeping us in shape if things get to the point where the workouts break us down ……. stop

I’m not saying you’re there I’m just saying particular for those that I’ve exercised religiously for decades It becomes a habit that is done for habit by habit, and at some point it can become a source of the problem and no longer the solution or prevention of the problem it was eventually designed to be.

From: Bowboy
27-Dec-22
I used to run but stopped about a year ago. I’m 62. I bought a Bowflex Max Trainer 6 and it’s easy on your joints but still gives you an awesome workout. Grant is correct as we age you really need to rethink your workouts.

From: Bigdog 21
27-Dec-22
If your doc. Said you had torn fibers and didn't do something , like put you in a cam walker boot and therapy. I would see a different one. I had to go to a orthopedics doctor and get MRI. To see how bad . Then a month off work and doing therapy. They always told me if it hurt they don't want me doing it. Lots of different stretching. And stay in the boot always. You can get the boot cheap from Amazon are eBay and it is instant relief. But 1st time left foot took 5 years before I did anything and it did recover but not doing everyday things. 2nd one I didn't mess around it was bad. It needed surgery. Talk to your doc about orthopedic doctors help.

From: midwest
27-Dec-22
Working out an hour a day is the easy part. A clean diet is 24/7/365 and you can't make up for it with exercise.

From: Nock
27-Dec-22
Wow Zim, I'm also 63 and at first, thought I wrote this thread. I limped out of a hard 3 week hunt this year with similar diagnosis. After a few months of PT, my pain has subsided but still have swelling in my left AT. Does not seem to be a silver bullet for this. I will stick with PT for another month or two and see what happens. It is a very slow process.

From: Zim
27-Dec-22
Nock, Dare I say the pain made both my elk & deer hunts unenjoyable. So many times I told myself I wish I was at home or soaking in a hot tub. That’s hard to swallow.

From: Bigdog 21
27-Dec-22
Nock see if your doc. Will let you take Meloxicam. Anti inflammatory worked wonders for me. Alot less pain . I still take it for arthritis in knees.

From: jjs
27-Dec-22
The 60s seem the time when all the abuse from earlier years come back in spades, myself went through 2 rotators + ulna nerve rewrap, gallbladder, planter facetious both feet, and 2 knee replacements 2020 and 6 wks ago and cannot forget the neuro disease.

Always stay fit but the family genes are coming in at 71, who ever said the Golden Age is Golden needs a swift kick in the arse.

It is what it is but just one day down and next one is better, had to drop bow # and over come and adapt. Hunt smarter and not harder, remember the tortuous and the hare story a lot of truth in that one.

Good hunting and enjoy the hunt--------

From: azelkhntr
28-Dec-22
2 partially torn achilles tendons may be indicative of a bigger issue. You should consult a sports medicine orthopedist immediately.

28-Dec-22
Zim, Please see an Orthopedic surgeon who is a specialist in sports medicine. They will do an exam and likely order an MRI. That will indicate the extent of the tears and help develop a plan for either rehab through PT or possibly surgery. They can make you better. This is a fixable problem. Especially for someone who is motivated and in reasonably good shape. Steve

From: Zim
28-Dec-22
Steve, No can do, I got a pacemaker so my MRI days are over. I should have mentioned that in my OP.

From: Bigdog 21
28-Dec-22
Steve well said. Yes Ortho. Doc will probably go with a plan of PT first. Then go from there.

From: DL
29-Dec-22

DL's embedded Photo
DL's embedded Photo
Well mines a little further up the leg. I was standing on a box to climb up into a storage area in my barn when it gave way. I couldn’t sit down for more that 10 minutes while driving. Then the two nights ago I bent over to pick up something and it felt like I was hit with a bat on the back of my leg. The old body is not cooperating anymore

From: Westy
06-Jan-23
I tore my achilles at the age of 40 this past July playing soccer which cost me my fall hunts. Classic non-contact, straight-line jogging. Looking back I can remember working out and kick boxing and remember it being sore and needing stretching I thought. Think that was when it was starting to go. I will be 6 months post rupture on the 9th, surgery was on the 14th. I still limp and have soreness, haven't rehabbed as hard as I likely could have due to mental struggles with it. I did get the pleasure of extra warmth since it happened though, 25lbs thanks to the lack of movement. I think the biggest obstacle is calf strength, which there are some things to do to help preserve that. I did not know about it at the time, bloodflow restriction or something. I would suggest a specialist and plan to keep weight off as much as possible. Pay attention to what your body is telling you. It will scar together, but I don't know how great that ends up being. There is a FB page dedicated to this injury with all sorts of results being posted. I know of one guy who did his walking in the airport, so you just never know. Don't wish this injury/recovery on anyone.

From: deerhunter72
06-Jan-23
I'll echo what others are saying-see a specialist who treats this condition. An MRI is the go-to study, but since that's out a CT or Ultrasound may be somewhat beneficial to look at the tears/anatomy. Makes no sense to live in pain if there are other options. Good luck!

From: Zim
07-Jan-23
I’ve been fasting to drop my 20# gained during Covid. Plan to go beyond that to 50# for next elk season. That’s where I belong anyway.

From: Mad Trapper
08-Jan-23
Tore one packing in on a mountain goat hunt in Alaska. Was very painful. Stuck it out and watched Jake arrow a goat the next day. Was able to put a couple of arrows into a billy and watched it bail off a cliff into an area that was inaccessible. Didn’t recover it. Not sure I could have packed it off. Saw Dr when I got back. No surgery. Took about 6 months to recover. Calf is deformed and weaker than the other one. I do a lot of calf work and stretching. Been ok since. Good luck.

From: Mad Trapper
08-Jan-23

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