It’s Official – I am Bionic

 Wow!  Piece a Cake!  I’m hopped up on morphine and I’m wearing some funky compression socks.  A machine is taking my blood from the surgery site, cleaning it and then putting it back in.  Then another machine is compressing my calves and forcing circulation (vascular compression).  Life is good.  The anesthitists did a great job numbing me up.  I feel nothing.  Absolutely nothing…but I am completely alert.  Hanging with my wife Colleen.
Nurse Tim will be taking care of me this afternoon.
Dr. Stacie – My Anesthesiologist – No Pain
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Christmas Cleanup

So with the help of my youngest son (Tommy – You’d love him if you met him), we got the ladder out and pulled down all of the Christmas Lights on the house.  It’s funny, these lights took 4 hours to put up and only 20 minutes to take down – love the quick clips.  Then we were off to the Christmas Tree.  Ornaments down, lights stowed away and all remnants of Christmas packed up and stored in the basement.  This was  a major task that I wanted to have completed before the surgery.   I even had enough time today to go launch some model rockets that the boys (Daniel and Tommy) got for Christmas.  Hip or not, I can still scale fences to retrieve wayward rockets.  Relaxing now.  The house is ready.  About the only other thing I need to do is turn all of my shoes into slipons by loosely tying them tight.  Anybody have any velcro shoes?  I always wondered why they were so popular with the older crowd…..hmmmmm Velcro Running Shoes….hmmmmmm……….I think I might be on to something.… (Click Here to View Full Post and Comments)

2012 Ringing in the New Year with a Run Up Beacon Hill

Beacon Hill - Overlooking the Spokane Valley
One last workout to the top of Beacon Hill. A beautiful view of the Spokane Valley
This is probably the last run I will go on (going to give the hip a 1 day reprieve before the big day).  Ran up Beacon Hill this morning at a leisurely pace.  The reward was the view from the top.  We runners are crazy that way.  I found an excerpt in the February 2012 Issue of Runner’s World (Weird that its January 1 and I’m reading the February 2012 issue – but I digress).
“The run itself, though, had suddenly become indescribable.  It wasn’t easy, but it was not hard, either.  I didn’t know until that  moment that there was a hidden gear between hard and easy.  I tried to figure out what it felt like, but it was unlike anything else in life I could think of – not like a sunset, not like an explosion, not like jumping from a plane nor swimming in a river nor holding a newborn.  Not like music or mathematics, not love nor hate nor indifference.  The moment a run becomes indescribable is the moment it becomes private – not secret, just impossible to share.”  Marc Parent – The Newbie Cronicles – Runners World Feb 2012



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Bill and Missy

Throughout the fall I have been staying in good contact with Bill and Missy.  I had the honor of coaching their kids in Cross-Country.  Missy had a double hip replacement during the fall.  I’ve had lots of questions for them and they have been very generous with information.   It has been very good for me to get real information from people who are in the trenches.  Missy has expressed more than once her concern that my active life style will get in the way of my recovery.  I have heard her and taken notice.  In the grand scheme of things….3 months is just a drop in the bucket ‘o life of mine.  They have been instrumental in helping me to understand the way that my day-to-day routine will change for a while.  They’ve given me good good info  on things I may need for rehab, from long shoe horns to special devices to pick things up (they tried that and nixed it) to suggesting I bring a cot to work (I probably won’t do that).  I feel more prepared now thanks to their input.… (Click Here to View Full Post and Comments)

The Bionics

OK So I visited with Dr. Tim today and got a good look at what I will be getting on Tuesday.  In time (if I am patient – and I promised that I would be),the bone will grow into these components.  Dr. Tim cautioned to take it slow to achieve the best results.  So Dr. Tim, has become “Coach Tim” for the next 3 months.  I am committed to the training plan that he has laid out for me.  (ugh….it’s going to be a boring 3 months).… (Click Here to View Full Post and Comments)

Stop! Thief!

So this morning I’m heading to my favorite breakfast place to grab a quick egg McMuffin.  (Breakfast IS the most important meal of the day you know).  I’m thinking about my pre-op appointment and all of the questions that are going to be answered for me when all of the sudden…..this guy with a scraggly beard wearing a tattered camo jacket comes riding by……..on “MY” stolen mountain bike.  I wasn’t positive initially, but from a distance, the bright yellow Manitou forks and the pewter frame sure looked like mine.  As I got closer, I could see the model (Marin) boldly written on the frame.  THIS was MY bike.  It was beaten up.  The grips were mostly ripped off of the handlebars and this outstanding citizen had placed a plastic bag over the seat.  I can only guess he gave the bike a makeover to look less suspicious himself.  So when he crossed the busy street, I crossed the street too.  But he turned right on the sidewalk, and I had to keep going.  So I circled around the block but I was too late, he just crossed that intersection too.  He kind of looked back at me and I probably gave myself away, because when I turned around and went a block farther, he was gone.  If only I could have taken a picture, if only I could have been more calm, if only I had my bionic hip – I would have chased after him and gotten my bike back.… (Click Here to View Full Post and Comments)

Titanium = Bionic

This post has me even more excited, hopeful and optimistic.  Amy Barrow was 44 when she had a “double hip replacement” using “the titanium spike and ball combo and the fancy new plastic cups” (This is what I’ll be getting).  Here is an excerpt from the article….

On New Year’s Day of 2006, 48-year-old Amy Barrow was the first woman home at the Resolution Run 5K in Nashville, beating accomplished runners half her age. The Nashvillian clocked 19 minutes and 40 seconds over a tough course that incorporates two bridges over the Cumberland River. Not too shabby, huh?

B-O-O-M!  The O-P-T-I-M-I-S-M continues…..

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Last workout with the SDP

I had my last practice with the SDP boys last night.  We did TRX.  TRX stands for Total Body Resistance Exercise. By the end of the class, it’s safe to say, we were all resistant to TRX.  Actually, we loved it. It was comical.  A bunch of runners doing planks and pushups.  Listening to Andy and Alex grunt and groan made the whole experience bearable.  At one point it was hard to tell if Alex, with his face buried into the floor, was crying or laughing.   Tye the TRX instructor sized us up at the start of the class and gave us one hell of a good core workout.  As we’re all sweating and groaning, he’s enthusiastically telling us that this is the 3rd class that he’s taught today.   Today I can feel the workout.  It’s a good feeling.

It’s amazing what $50 for six months will give you.  That is the token price you pay to be part of the SDP.  TOTALLY WORTH IT.  Every week we meet for a workout and then occasionally  we’ll grab a beer afterwards.  During these winter months, we’ve done some non-running stuff like working with physical therapists to improve running form, TRX Workouts (woohoo), and pool workouts.  Such variety!! I really am surprised that more of the SDP members don’t take advantage of the non-running workouts.  The workouts have been fantastic, but the camaraderie of the group is what I will be missing the most during the recovery period.  There is not one “heady” one in the bunch.  We all meet to run and to work hard.  Last night was no exception.… (Click Here to View Full Post and Comments)


So the boys are getting old enough that we all got to sleep in.  At 8:00 sharp the present opening began.  There is nothing like knowing that you nailed it with your kids presents.  Tommy 11 and Daniel – 15 Ipods.  Bam!  Brandon – 20 (Seattle U)  Hip Leather Coat (Very Seattle).  Boom!  Ryan – 21 (Georgetown)  Pea Coat for those power interviews he will be doing with major consulting firms soon.   Went on a run to celebrate. 1 hour and 20 minutes.  It was slow.  I savored it.  Snow all around me in Riverside State Park…..some virgin snow.  It’s always great to lay the first tracks down the trail.  What a great start to the day.  The hip hurt a little.  But the mind and the soul appreciated it.  The whole body experience – its one of the many reasons why I run.

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Why I Run


  • I run to stay fit (of course), but that’s just the beginning.
  • I run because running is a way to celebrate.
  • I run because running heals not just the body, but also the mind and the soul.
  • I run because sometimes the best answers to my toughest problems are found when I’m running.
  • I run so that I can daydream without interruption.
  • I run to enjoy the comradery of old friends as well as meet new ones.
  • I run because it is a great form of meditation.  Sometimes I forget that I’m running.
  • I run because by running, I get that occasional dream where I’m running a familiar trail (its usual not familiar in real life, but in my dream I’ve run it hundreds of times) and there is no pain, I’m gliding and completely enjoying the experience.  I always wake up refreshed after a dream like that.
  • I run because like an old friend….running is good company.
  • I run because it’s an easy way to soak in some sun.
  • I run because it’s easier than dieting.



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I found some great posts on the web that I had to include in this area….I’ll continue to add as I find them.

GIMPY.  So this first testimonial is in response to an individual named Gimpy who had a hip replacement and was asking the community what they thought about running.  She had started to run, but was concerned about the long term effects.  There were several replies to her post.  The boo birds were there telling her all about the no-no’s of running after hip replacement, but one individual left the following quote:

4 years ago I had both hips replaced 7 weeks apart, my Dr. was fine with me running again so 6 weeks after my second hip I started running. It wasn’t easy but I stuck with it and last year I was able to run the Twincities Marathon. Now I run 6 miles three days a week and it’s like I never had arithritis. So Gimpy Keep running!


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Optimistically Optimistic









The picture says it all.   I was talking to 2 of my running buddies last night (Andy and Alex) and they told me that when the hip gets replaced, I’ll be the bionic man.  That’s how I feel…..the glass is at least half full. So it’s the 23th of December, and Christmas is just a few days away.  I’m hopeful and optimistic for the new year.  This year has been marked with some challenges, but I am excited for the new year and maybe more optimistic and hopeful than I’ve ever been.  Not much new to report until I go in for my pre-op appointment on the 12/29.  My Christmas gift is coming on 1/3/2012 and I’m as anxious as a little boy on Christmas eve waiting for the arrival of Santa.… (Click Here to View Full Post and Comments)

My Questions and His Answers

OK….so I really need to know some answers to my questions. I won’t have answers until my pre-op appt on 12/29…but figured I should start writing them down.

  1. When will I be able to put weight on my hip?  Dr. Tim says that he wants me on crutches for 2 weeks.  He says that he KNOWS I will want to put full weight on my hip before then, but he wants to make sure that I gradually add the weight and give the joint time to heal.
  2. When will I be able to swim? He is recommending that I wait 1 month.
  3.  When will I be able to Spin?  No spinning until the 3 months are over.  Spinning puts pressure on the socket and he wants the initial bone growth into the new “bionics” <– my word not his, to be uninterrupted.
  4. When will I be able to go back to work? He said I would be able to go back to work when I am ready.  He suggested a reentry into the workforce
  5. Can I do pushups?  1 Month.
  6. What is the most therapeutic position during recovery?  Can I sit at a desk? Yes I can sit at a desk, but I should get up periodically and walk around.  (Again, Dr. Tim’s suggestions as far as reaclimating to work…were a bit extreme – but I didn’t think he’d mind if I didn’t completely follow those suggestions).
  7. When will I realize that hip replacement surgery is not an out-patient thing?  Answered:  I actually did think it was an outpatient procedure.  Talking with Mark the pizza guy – who had his hip replaced…….I figured I’d be walking out the door on crutches the same day and tossing the crutches the next.  Tommy Tommy Tommmy sooooo much to learn.  I will be in the hospital for 3 days.  But I will have a computer and my iphone and words-with-friends, plus a few books that my boys thought I would find entertaining while I’m cooped up.

Other things:

  • I can do upper body work (lifting) but not while standing.  As a matter of
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The Calm Before The Storm

So now that I know the day has come….I’m cherishing the remaining workouts I have until I head over to the dark side of the moon.  Today was easy.  No running.  Just spinning happily away on the bike followed by some lifting.  I can still work out mind you…..spinning especially is easier on the hip, but there is just nothing like a good run to clear your mind and change your mental outlook.  There are many questions that I need to ask Dr. Tim when I meet him for at my Pre-Op appointment on 12/29.  Can I lift weights?  How long before I can spin? When can I swim?  (I won’t even ask about running yet).   I’m guessing he will want to slow me down a bit and first talk about how to change underwear and put on socks.  Well I will need to know that too I guess.  It’s time to start writing these questions down so that I can be armed when I meet him.   Tonight I would like to send a shout out to the Spokane Swifts.  They are the female version of the men’s running group that I run with.  It is by their example that the Spokane Distance Project was born.  I received a nice card signed by many of them wishing me well and hope for a “SWIFT” recovery.  Thank you very much ladies…….your thoughts and well wishes are appreciated.… (Click Here to View Full Post and Comments)

Welcome to Hiprunner

My name is Hip Brother Tom.  I am a runner.  I had a hip replacement in January of 2012.   A month prior to my surgery, I started this blog to share my experience with anyone who might be facing the same fate down the road.  I wanted to show my weekly recovery progress and hopeful return to running.  Hence the name…  As time has passed, I have opened this site to others who wanted to share their experiences.  There is even a Hip Runners forum now.  We are the Hip Runner’s Club.  But it isn’t just about hips.  In February of 2018, I also had a partial knee replacement.  This site serves as a community of individuals of hip and knee replacements who are seeking advice on running again.    If you find yourself getting a hip replacement or a knee replacement, and would like to become a member of the Hip Runner’s Club, we would love to have you share your story on this blog.  Click here to become a member.… (Click Here to View Full Post and Comments)