I went back to a different blog I had where I posted about what my physical therapist had to say about me being hungry after PT. But first, I’ll give a little bit of back story:
In October of 2007, my left knee finally said it wasn’t going to take me continuing to walk on it after years of dealing with an injury. I went to a minor emergency clinic, who prescribed an MRI, and found my knee was slagged. The doctor at the minor emergency clinic said I was looking at knee surgery, probably reconstructive because at 41, I was too young for replacement. I found a surgeon who, after hearing about my injury in 2000, how my knee had always acted up after that, diagnosed my knee problem as me being fat, gave me a shot of cortisone in the knee (I was in tears it hurt so bad), and sent me away with a prescription for physical therapy, recommendation to lose weight and the words that we would absolutely NOT be doing surgery on my knee. Not even to take out the shards that were in the knee (one of the many problems that showed up on the MRI) even though it would be beneficial to do surgery for that.
He totally disregarded what I’d told him about the injury. About how I didn’t have any insurance at the time of initial injury OR for years afterwards. And he disregarded what I’d told him about losing 70 pounds in a year and a half and how the knee was doing worse AFTER the weight loss.
I found a different surgeon, but it took a few weeks to get the initial appointment. Meanwhile, I went to physical therapy on the hope that it would help with the pain I was still in (despite the cortisone shot the first surgeon had given me).
Conall the PT is a body builder and wrestler. Besides having all the college degrees and classes for physiology necessary to be a licensed Physical Therapist, he also has a lot of personal knowledge of nutrition and what it takes to build muscle. He’s done a lot of research so he could optimize his own training.
The second surgeon listened to my story of long time injury, having lost weight and the pain being worse, looked at the MRI and did a couple xrays of his own. And said that my problem was due to the untreated injury, which was made worse by walking/running/climbing/etc on it all these years. He said the only way to fix this would be reconstructive surgery. And oh yeah, the cortisone didn’t help because it was contraindicated for this type of knee problem.
Long back story, I know. The part following is from February of last year. I was doing an hour to an hour and fifteen minutes of weight lifting exercises three times a week to rebuild the muscles that had atrophied due to the surgery and walking on my leg wrong for so many years. I was doing balance and stability exercises as well as walking to retrain me how to walk correctly. And after each PT appointment, I was starving.
In other PT news, on Monday Conall the PT told me something that I thought I’d never hear coming from the mouth of a medical professional. Let me preface this by reminding y’all that the only thing I’ve ever heard from medical professionals was that I had to lose weight, or suffer dire consequences in the future. Let me also preface this by saying that Conall the PT is not only very experienced in physical therapy (20 years experience and damn good at what he does), but he’s also a body builder and wrestler. So, on Monday we were talking and I told him how ravenous I am at the end of the appointment all the time now.
Conall asked if I ate immediately after the appointment, and I said we do. We usually go to some restaurant (because Mom doesn’t get that I need to eat NOW, not in two hours after I’m done with PT). Conall then asked what I ate. So I admitted that it was usually a hamburger and salad, occasionally fries or onion rings (go to a local Village Inn — Shoney’s or IHOP style restaurant). Conall told me I wasn’t eating enough, and then said that I should also have a shake as well as the hamburger and fries. Ummm HUH? Was that somebody who’s a medical professional telling a fat person to eat more?!?! I tell you, it really confused me.
So, Wednesday, we were talking more about my eating patterns on PT day, and I told him that I eat protein before coming to PT. He said that was great, and told me that, as well as my water that I bring, I should bring either some electrolyte drink (but it HAS to be the type with carbs in it, not sugar free stuff) or juice, and that afterwards I should drink chocolate milk, as well as go out for a really good lunch with shake. I looked at him and said, “I’ve got to tease you now…” Then proceeded to ask if there was a oversight committee I could report him to, because he was telling a FAT person not only to eat MORE, but to eat really fatty stuff, like chocolate milk, milkshakes, and fries or onion rings. He laughed, and did a very short physiology-as-weight-builders-know-it 101.
Doing the type of muscle building exercises I’m doing breaks down the muscles a bit so they can rebuild. It’s how you build muscle. In order to rebuild, the muscles need a combination of protein, carbohydrates and fat. Thus, the hamburger, french fries and shake, with chocolate milk later on, is the perfect combination to help the muscles rebuild. I thanked him for the physiology lesson (I really didn’t know that, and am always glad to get new information about stuff), and then told him about what my experience has been since I was 14 and first gained weight from 95 pounds. (He heard I was 95 pounds and said that was way too skinny for my frame, and was I sick when I was that small. I replied that I wasn’t, but didn’t get into the reason I was so skinny.) About how the first surgeon I saw about my knee back in October who diagnosed me as being fat wasn’t the first doctor to treat me like that, and that, most of my doctors have done that since I was 14. He just shook his head and said that was a terrible way to treat somebody.
Yay for somebody who gets it.
‘Course, this is the same guy, who way back when I first went to see him with orders to strengthen my leg muscles supporting my knee as all that was wrong with me was that I was fat, examined my leg muscles and said, “I don’t know why he thinks you need to strengthen and tone your muscles, you’ve got very well developed leg muscles. You don’t need musculature support for that knee.”