In the winter of 2015 I began training for my third marathon. This time was different because I started to work with a coach. I was excited to have someone who could help me take the guess-work out of training and keep me accountable with my busy lifestyle. As a mom and a college professor, I needed help if I wanted to improve my times. January of March of that year, I saw PR races all over the board, I was getting excited and new that I would have a huge PR come marathon day.
Unfortunately, I was never able to see this PR as I fractured my pelvis on April 8th. I went out with a friend for an 8 mile run, and somewhere somehow I started to have pain, the pain got so bad I was walking by the end of the run.
In the weeks following, we tried to work through it, hoping it was soft tissue, but it never went away and eventually a bone scan revealed the fracture. By that point, I had long pulled out of the Marathon I was supposed to have run. The radiologist actually came into the room where I was having the scan done and wildly waved his arms as he emphatically warned me not to run, or exercise or walk, really.
So it was confirmed with my Sports Medicine doctor. He told me NO RUNNING FOR FOUR WEEKS, at least. And I said, "OK, but when I can I start running really?"
My coach encouraged me to ask him about a machine called the "AlterG" and a few other things I might try at a clinic called "Empower". After agreeing to do nothing and walk as little as possible, he said in two weeks, after an additional X-ray, I might be ready to try the AlterG. So I patiently or not so patiently waited. In two weeks, my X-ray showed healing, and I was allowed to try the AlterG!
My coach met me at Empower the first time, and I was introduced to a whole crew of enthusiastic and knowledgeable therapists; Raj, Julie, Nicole, Tim, Ally and Briana, just to name a few. I was able to get on the AlterG and run at only 20% my body weight the first day! It felt amazing! I knew it would be a long time before I ran another marathon, but I was on my way.
I worked hard at Empower three days a week, using the AlterG, slowly increasing my time, body weight and even incline! And it was a workout! I was always offered a towel after I got off the machine. Through the use of the AlterG, I was able to maintain a good amount of cardio and muscle memory that would otherwise have been lost due to my injury.
In the end, I came to Empower for four months and use the AlterG almost every visit! It became a religion to me! One thing I never really mentioned to anyone was that I had actually registered for the Chicago marathon before my fracture had been confirmed. I talked to my coach in July and said half joking "Hey, remember how I registered for the Chicago Marathon in April?"
Sooooo, we talked, and devised a plan. Using the AlterG and slowly acclimating myself to outdoor running I was able to "train" for the Chicago Marathon. I came to Chicago for the Chicago Marathon on October 11th using a modified run/walk plan. I am proud to say I FINISHED the marathon, and it was not even my worst time.
I am so grateful for the staff at Empower and know that without them or the AlterG, I would not have been able to complete a marathon only 6 months after a pelvic fracture!
[My referring doctor] was correct in suggesting I attend physical therapy (last April). I ignored his suggestion and my stiffness and pain continued to increase. When I called his office at the end of July and asked for a PT script and suggested PT clinics I had difficulty walking upstairs, getting up after sitting for 30 minutes and generally stopped gardening, golf and yoga because I was so stiff.
The folks at Empower PT have really helped me to progress to get my mobility back. Today I walked my dog, did some gardening and still feel good. Each therapist helped in a different way and I appreciated the change in tactics. I've been to physical therapy 5 times and this has been the most positive experience. Empower PT has some new, state-of-the-art equipment and the therapists are up to date with knowledge. Everyone has been friendly and professional. I would recommend the facility to anyone needing physical therapy!
"Exactly 1 year ago today, I received my new knee replacement. I wanted to give you an update from my perspective on my progress.
As you know, I started physical therapy with Empower about a week after surgery. My main focus was to regain and even improve my mobility and range of motion. With the help of the wonderful staff at Empower, I feel I have exceeded all my expectations. I have little to no pain and for the most part do not even think about having a replacement.
In September (about 4 months after my surgery), I started a fitness and weight loss program at Empower. I have lost about 40 pounds. I have greatly improved my cardio. I have muscles where I never knew muscles existed. I will be 57 in June and I am truly amazed at the intensity of the workouts I am able to get through (3 days a week for an hour). Empower provides me with a food diary program that tracks proteins, carbs, and fats. This has helped me make a dramatic change in my eating habits.
Overall, I am so very grateful to you, and to Empower Physical Therapy and Fitness, for truly giving me a new lease on life."
"I wanted to take a minute to thank each and every one of you for all you have done for me over the past five months.
When I first came to you I was not able to do even the simplest task for myself and that was very difficult for me. I now can do almost everything I could before my injury and I owe that to you. Your wealth of knowledge, encouragement and support kept me on the right track and motivated me to keep pushing.
Special thanks to Tim, Russ, Kelly and Raj for their incredible knowledge and support providing exactly what I needed to keep moving forward all while making the healing environment so friendly and special, a place where I feel like I really mattered. Also to Gina, Bryana, Barb and Anthony who always had a smile to share.
I look forward to continuing on with Empower on my own to keep my strength training going but I am forever grateful for all you have done."
"As a part my strength training and flexibility program, Redcord gave me the core-power and muscle balance needed to achieve race times I once only dreamed of. Redcord could be the final piece to your training program puzzle whether you are an elite athlete, weekend warrior or just looking to stay fit and active. I highly recommend it!"
"Fantastic results! It's all about the people on this very knowledgeable and professional team."
"I had right shoulder pain, had an MRI showing bursitis and started physical therapy at Empower. After my 1st treatment, I could already tell a difference. I had less pain and increased range of motion. My shoulder was completely back to normal before I completed my program. I am very pleased with the therapy program I received at Empower!"
"I injured my back and the pain was incapacitating. I could barely walk from room to room in my house. I went to Empower Physical Therapy and Fitness and was amazed by the care I received. After being thoroughly evaluated, I was prescribed a regimen of Red Cord exercises and manual therapy, along with a home exercise program. The Red Cord really made me aware of the weaknesses within my body and allowed the therapist to isolate the muscles that needed to be strengthened. I went from being in excruciating pain to minimal discomfort within 2 visits. I would highly recommend Empower Physical Therapy and Fitness to those in need of fast, effective, high quality care."
Dan Severance D.O.
Orthopedic Trauma Fellow
University of Louisville
"Empower was highly recommended to me by a trusted medical professional, so I expected a high and effective level of treatment, which of course I received. However I was pleased and even surprised by the knowledge, professionalism, and kindness given to me by all staff members. Thanks!"
"I've been in and out of Physical Therapy (PT) for the past 22 ½ years. Last year I had a revision on my left stump, for I am a BKA (Below Knee Amputation), left leg. Therefore I should have been in and out of PT, but because of some problems it was put on hold for about 10 months. Nevertheless after 3 days at Empower Physical Therapy, I was able to notice the difference. Also, I was able to feel muscles I never felt in 22 years. I highly recommend Redcord or Empower Physical Therapy and Fitness to anyone."
"If one needs physical therapy, Empower provides an excellent experience."
"The staff is very friendly and courteous. They explain what exercise/treatment is going to be done and explain the purpose of it. The staff remains with the client and ensures the exercises are being done correctly and will gently instruct adjustments that are more effective. The staff listens to the client’s concerns and addresses them quickly and effectively. I have recommended Empower to my own physician because they are professional, effective and compassionate at all times. I have and will continue to recommend Empower to friends and acquaintances. Empower is the most effective therapy provider that I have ever utilized or worked with in my personal health care experiences."
"I injured my shoulder lifting heavy boxes at work. Since I work in a shipping store, I needed to quickly address my injury so I could keep up with the physical demands of my job. I also had to suspend my weightlifting routine due to the intense pain.
I saw my sports medicine doctor and he prescribed anti-inflammatory medication and rest, but my condition did not improve after two weeks. My doctor then offered me a cortisone injection or physical therapy. Having been a patient at AquatiCare in the past, I chose physical therapy.
The therapist diagnosed my condition quickly and suggested that 2-3 sessions of Redcord therapy would likely be all that I needed. After my first session, I felt tremendous relief of my shoulder pain. I followed up with a second session the next day, and was literally pain free by the end of the day. I followed my home exercises to strengthen my rotator cuff muscles, and then returned for one last visit. After just 3 Redcord therapy sessions, my shoulder feels strong and pain free.
Thank you to the entire Staff!"
Since I started physical therapy at AquatiCare on Oct 13, 2011 I went from using a walker to a platform cane by the end of October. By the end of November I had progressed from a platform cane to a standard cane and now I am able to walk without any cane. I'm sure anyone would be impressed with the great strides of progress I have made in just 2 months. The water therapy and other exercises have been a good challenge for me and the aggressive therapy I've received has contributed to my well-being and recovery. Thank you!
I've been going to AquatiCare since February 2011 after my auto accident. The first day there I could hardly move from so much pain and stiffness but as time went on I became mobile again. The quality of care I received from the staff was remarkable. They tended to my needs and exceeded my expectations and continue to do so. They have a variety of equipment to aid in regaining strength and mobility as well as water therapy. In the past, I would become very bored with physical therapy and lose interest, but with AquatiCare I look forward to going because I am challenged and I have new exercises to look forward to. I receive one on one time with the staff and I don't feel like I am being rushed with their time. AquatiCare staff is very caring and concerned with the quality and speed of my recovery.
"Thanks for all the great work. I'm heading into my second PAIN-FREE week!"
"Thank you for all that you do! I am so happy that my shoulder is doing so good! You are all so nice."
"Thank you all for your great work helping me through my rehabilitation. I will surely recommend anyone that needs physical therapy to come to you! You are all wonderful."
"Thank you for your follow up. I am doing quite well, all thanks to you and your very efficient staff."
"Thank you for all your help, kindness, and patience during my physical therapy. You're an awesome bunch."
"Thank you for all your advice and therapy sessions. I think I am headed in the right direction, FINALLY."
"A special thanks to all of you at AquatiCare! We appreciate your continued care and thoughtfulness."
- PB and CB
"Thank you for your tender loving care. You made me feel very comfortable when you know how anxious I was. God Bless you!"
"There are no words to express my Thanks to AquatiCare. I suffered for months with so much pain in my left shoulder and numbness down my arm right down to my fingertips. I was not able to raise my arm at all; the numbness in my arm was horrible. Just four weeks of the therapy has made such a great change for me. I have to say all the staff is just super. Thank you so much."