Just wanted to submit a short post that may re-assure others.
I had ACDF C6/7 with peek cage on 8th Jan 16 and went home the same day (no collar). Took codeine for 48hrs then occasional Ibuprofen as and when needed. I walked as often as possible starting from day 2 when I only managed a few hundred meters. As my work entails nothing more strenuous than working a PC and telephone I returned to work in 10 days but found I tired easily for the first week or so. I started exercising on a treadmill after 4 weeks and quickly was able to walk 5k without any difficulty at all. The walking actually reduced the pain and slight numbness and pins and needles I was having post op. By week 6, I was feeling 95% recovered and played 18 holes of golf in week 8 and again in week 9 (although I didn't risk using the driver) with no adverse effects at all. Now at week 9 and feeling close to normal. I have excellent movement in neck and virtually no pain, numbness or pins and needles at all. The fine 2 inch scar on my has healed well and is already fading, yes it does feel slightly bruised still but not enough to be a worry.
I was nervous before surgery and found it hard to find some positive posts on ACDF surgery so thought I would try and reassure those waiting surgery that it isn't always a negative experience. I have listened to my body and been careful not to lift or twist during recovery and taken plenty of exercise fro as soon as possible after the procedure which has resulted in a speedy return to being the most pain free I have been for years.