My first ever physio appointment

Today I had my first ever appointment with a physiotherapist.  A few things had been bugging me about my body at the gym and during my runs – things that seemed to go a bit beyond the knowledge of gym trainers.  I’d been wanting to go for a while, but hadn’t been in a position to afford physiotherapy until recently.

The first thing that struck me both when making the appointment and when turning up to it was that they seemed to think I was crazy for making an appointment when I didn’t have an injury and wasn’t paying with insurance.  "You… don’t want me to treat you?" the physio asked, stunned.  I explained to him that at this stage I just wanted some advice on a few things.  I was genuinely surprised that this was apparently uncommon.

I explained my situation to him. A year ago I had seen a podiatrist because I felt I had been walking funny; I’d felt unsteady on my feet and my right foot seemed to turn out gel-heel-wedge-spurmore than my left.  That podiatrist concluded that I had a leg length discrepancy; my left leg was one centimetre shorter than my right.  She gave me a heel wedge to put in a new pair of running shoes I bought at the same time.  I’ve been wearing that heel wedge for a year, since. It genuinely has made me feel more steady on my feet, but I’ve had a problem with my right foot going tingly and numb during my runs.

Physio-TreatmentSurprisingly, this physio concluded that I don’t have a leg length discrepancy at all.  He discovered that the reason my right leg was turning outwards was because of tight/knotted muscles down the right side of my body, including the right side of my lower back, my buttocks and my calf. To prove his point he pressed in on where the knots were and I felt pain.  He pressed  in the same places on the other side and there was no pain. He also got me to try a short calf stretch, and while I could stretch the left leg fine, my right leg was too stiff and rigid.

reverse_crunchThinking that some other problems I’d been having might be related, I told him that I find it almost impossible to keep my torso upright when I squat (I lean forward) and that my hip clicks painfully when I lower my legs in a reverse crunch.  He said the former was probably related, but the he couldn’t explain the latter at all, only to say that the exercise was beyond my ability. Odd, because other people don’t seem to struggle with reverse crunches and they’re used even on easy mode of EA Sports Active 2.  My pelvis was tilting to far forward where my back should remain on the floor.  Hard.

After the appointment I wanted a second opinion so went round the corner to an orthotics place that I know gives free friendly advice.  The guy there confirmed my leg lengths are the same, so "the physio is probably right".  Hmmm.

How do physiotherapists work out long-term muscle spasms/knots?  The physio said it wouldn’t be easy, and that it would hurt and take multiple visits (once per week).  The last time a professional told me that (a chiropractor), it simply wasn’t an option for me.  But just cos I have a little more money now doesn’t mean I want to be spending that kind of money.  Sigh… I’m not good at making decisions.  If anyone reading this has a decent knowledge of muscles or physiotherapy, I would totally appreciate any opinions or advice.


My foot hates me :(

I’ve had quite an active day today.  This morning I went for a jog.  Once again, I jogged 3k and then my foot started going numb.  I couldn’t run any further because it was slightly painful and not being able to feel your feet is a bit unnerving.  So I ended up jogging 3km and walking 2km.  I really don’t know what’s causing this.  I suspect it may be due to my leg-length discrepancy  (I wear a heel wedge in my left foot but it’s the right foot losing circulation). 

11_3_origIt’s starting to frustrate me a lot because I really wanted to get into running in a bigger way.  I think it can be a really effective way of improving cardio and losing weight.  Plus it’s so easy.  I’m going to have to see somebody about it.  My family says to check with my doctor but I suspect it might be something a podiatrist might know more about.

I tried a new app for my android phone to track my run… Endomondo.  Doesn’t seem much different than RunKeeper.  Not sure which I prefer, to be honest.

This afternoon my brother and I walked to the gym and I took him through my cardio routine.  Was all good.  I tried the scales at this gym and if they’re to be believed I’ve gained 3kg *gasp*, but I’m not gonna worry until I get back home and weigh myself on my normal scales…  they seem much nicer to me!  I’m eating a lot of delicious, nutritious food here, and I really don’t know what to expect on the scales when I get back.

I’m feeling quite fatigued today…  sore lower back… stiff neck….  time for a day off tomorrow, I guess.

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