Well, that's the million dollar question. Many surgeons will tell you that it takes nerves a very long time to heal...and that it is perfectly normal to have nerve pain after surgery. The key is to monitor if you find the pain gradually improving, no matter how slowly, or if it stays the same or gets more intense.
In general, with a discectomy, I would say it would not be unusual to continue to have leg pain for several months post surgery.
Remember to walk. This is the most important activity you can do right now. Distance and length are not important. It is better to take a number of small walks during the course of the day than one or two longer walks. The point of walking at this early time period is to stretch out the spinal nerves and to keep scar tissue from attaching to the nerve as it is forming and filling in.
The first six weeks are the riskiest period after a discectomy (risk of reherniation) so take care to follow doctor's orders precisely. Do not push yourself no matter how great you are feeling.
But don't wear yourself out walking! I always forget that there are some people that think if a little walking is good, tons of walking is better...and end up overdoing it! Rest is just as important as anything else you do as part of rehab.
And remember to drink lots of water and other fluids. Use good posture and body mechanics...no slouching. Train yourself to sit squarely on both "sit bones" with feet flat on floor. This is a tough one for me as we were trained from children to cross one leg over the other to be "lady-like."
Also, in case your surgeon forgot to mention it, do not sit more than 15-20 minutes at a time, especially for the first six weeks. Sitting puts 30% more stress on the discs than either standing or walking...so get up and move around, even if it is just for a stretch or a short walk around the house.
I've not been sitting long. I have been walking a mile in 3-4 divisions, so a mile total a day. And it is hard not to cross the legs, they just seem to go up automatically, LOL. But I correct it when I realize it.
Thank you again. I have been reading your posts leading up to this and you are such a helpful sweetie. So very giving of your time.