Posted by Coach Mark
After seeing my Wellness Doctor today, I am reminded at what a critical part of my overall athletic (and consequently, life) team he has become. From those who love staying active every day and compete recreationally to those who train seven days a weeks competing competitively, we all share a love of exercise. With this love and passion (dare I say, “lifestyle”) comes responsibility in taking care of our bodies as we continually “move” – sometimes hard and sometimes for long periods of time. Of course, when issues arise, we do the best we can, but often we need help.
That’s where your Wellness Doctor comes in. This person plays a critical role in “maintenance” of your body while also figuring out and “fixing” acute issues as they arise. What’s the difference between your general practitioner and your Wellness Doctor? Often – everything. Unlike most general practitioners, Wellness Doctors view their patients as fellow athletes. They know that while the x-ray shows no fracture, a “just stop running for two months” is not always the right answer. Wellness Docs tend to treat holistically and view an athlete’s issue as a something they (together with the athlete) will try and fix - however long it takes. A tight fascia on the bottom of the foot may actually be caused by overly tight hamstrings pulling on knotted soleus and gastroc muscles. Sound familiar? They will ask about your diet and can often recommend appropriate supplements (like MAP) that your body requires with your active lifestyle. Is it muscle, skeletal or joint? Ice or heat? What type of stretching should you be doing and when? And, of course, what about massage?
At TeamMPI, we coach dozens and dozens of athletes throughout the year. And for everyone, we recommend a Wellness Doctor. We are fortunate to have an amazing one right where we live. If we didn’t, however, I would travel to see one. I have been able to train for years on end with limited interruption largely due to my Wellness Doc’s knowledge, advice and counsel. So ask around and find a good one near you – preferably an athlete – to join your team. If you don’t have one, then go see Dr. Minkoff as I think he’s the wisest of them all!
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