Going to the “Gym for broken people”

by Sara on October 12, 2012

This week was something that I have REALLY looking forward to for a while now.

PHYSICAL THERAPY!!

Let’s do this! Fix my hip so I can run again because this fall weather is just TOO good to be true!!

Fun fact about my search for a physical therapist.  I have the worst luck when it comes to finding doctors.  The last time I found a (regular) doctor based on a friends recommendation it didn’t work out very well.  The office staff was rude, not very accommodating or helpful, I could never get an appointment when I need etc. etc.  I have also had a lot of misses when it comes to selecting a doctor off my insurance companies web site.  It’s just so hard to pick from a list of names and hope that you get someone who cares + an office staff that isn’t a complete mess.  I put a lot of thought into my search and went through almost everyone on the list.

I called Ralph since he had PT on his knee a while back (Why didn’t I just go to the same office he did? I wanted something close to our house and his office was close to his work),

“Ralph, when you had PT, it’s like a gym right? A gym for broken people?”

“Uh, yeah I guess that could be one way to describe it”.

“Ok that’s what I thought.  I keep finding lots of offices with only one doctor listed.  That sounds weird to me.  I want an office with a lot of doctors, and a big gym for broken people”

So I found an office with multiple doctors, called them up and made an appointment.  I had to wait almost TWO WEEKS before they had an opening that fit my schedule.  Which worked out fine because in the mean time I was able to get my x-rays that took me a week to schedule.

Can I just tell you how good it feels to be back into workout clothes again?

The side braid is officially the best hairstyle ever invented.

The majority of my first appointment was spent talking about my injury, what happened, when did it start, etc.  The PT read over my doctor’s notes from the script, and then stretched my legs in all sorts of directions trying to see if anything would cause pain.

The best news of the day? No pain.

He pushed and pulled and twisted and while I did feel some amazing deep stretching (not unlike I feel in yoga) but nothing hurt.

The verdict? Three months of training on the banked roads of suburban southern New Jersey had likely caused somewhat of a muscle imbalance between my legs since I was constantly running on the left side of the road, and my legs were constantly running on an uneven surface.  I likely hadn’t done any MAJOR damage (BEST.  NEWS.  EVER)  and the month or so that I had taken off of running was probably the best thing to do.  Now we would just stretch out my muscles  strengthen my hips, and hopefully I would be back to running in a month or so.

Rocking my brand new #SweatPink laces

Obviously I never expected them to tell me, “You’re fine go run tomorrow”.  But at the same time I really wasn’t sure what (if anything) was wrong with me and how much longer I would be out of commission.  It felt good to know that I could be back to running again soon, even if just a mile or two.  It was super reassuring to hear that I only needed to come in twice a week for maybe three weeks – re balance my screwed up body and then try to run again.

We are having some of the most AMAZING fall weather right now and it is killing me not to go out and run in it.  Every time I lace up my sneakers to work on the house (I really need to stop doing that) I just want to RUN.

Something else he said to me that first day really stuck with me too – “Strength is important”.

I know, I know it’s like when you go to the dentist and they say “flossing is important, do it a million times a day” but you really hate doing it and always forget.

Strength really is important.   I know that.   And I know I need to make more time for it, even if it is just a few sets of squats after my run.

Bottom line, I am loving going to the broken people gym and getting closer to being un-broken again.  The stretches they have me doing feel great, and the strength exercises make me feel like I am making progress towards getting better.  It’s fun to get dressed up in my workout clothes and at least pretend I am getting my sweat on, even if it’s just kind-of-getting-my-heart-rate-up.  It makes me feel less left out when I see everyone’s instagram pictures of their awesome workouts.

Have you ever been to/had physical therapy?  Was it for an injury or an accident? How did you know you were going to get a good doctor??

xx Sara

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