At the beginning of the pandemic, Spring 2020, the marathon that I had signed up for for Fall 2020, was cancelled. I decided to do what any rational runner would do, and train harder, faster, and longer than ever so that when races returned I would be ready to crush them all.
It didn’t work out that way. By late July/early August, I was having quite a bit of hamstring tightness and hip pain during my training runs. By the time fall came and the weather was relenting and races were starting to be held again, I was out of commission with what turned out to be a hip labral tear and impingement.
I was having so much pain in my right hip that I couldn’t run without limping. My pain had been diagnosed by another doctor as tendonitis, and I was encouraged to keep running.
Any runner is thrilled to be told to keep running, but my pain kept getting worse and worse, and nothing, including rest, helped. After I finished runs I could barely walk, and I was in so much pain during them that I was getting nauseated.
I made an appointment with Dr. Benton Emblom and he diagnosed my injury as a labral tear and impingement that day. Before I left his office, I had my surgery scheduled for 2 weeks out! Setting up my surgery and finally having an answer to why my pain wasn’t getting better made me feel relieved and hopeful that I’d be able to run without pain again.
I was very pleased with my care and will tell anyone who will listen about how my amazing care was under Dr. Emblom. When I was waking up from the anesthesia post-surgery, a nurse gave me a packet with instructions on post-surgery care and follow-ups.
She also gave me a voucher for an Andrews Sports Medicine hat. I was so excited and in my anesthesia-haze I said, “Dr. Emblom is SO NICE to give this to me!” My husband had to roll his eyes and tell me that everyone gets one after surgery! But, I was really proud of my Andrews trucker hat and I wear it regularly to run in now!
I would absolutely recommend Dr. Emblom to my friends and family and I would see him again in a heartbeat. My right hip (surgery hip) feels so good that it is now my “good hip” and not my bad one. Any time my left hip (non-surgery hip) feels a little off, I halfway wish that I could get it fixed up by Dr. Emblom so it could feel as good as my right one!
As soon as I woke up from my surgery in the recovery room, I already felt better. I had pain from the incisions and from invasiveness of the surgery, but I could tell that the constant injury pain was gone. I had my surgery on a Friday, and I started my physical therapy at Therapy South with Dr. Phil Moore on the following Monday.
I went to physical therapy 2-3 times a week for about 3 months, where I gradually added new exercises each session. Before I knew it, I was running again on the anti-gravity treadmill, then the regular treadmill, and then Dr. Emblom cleared me to run on the road again. I worked hard at my recovery, and it wasn’t easy, but every mile that I ran was pain-free.
In the time since my surgery, I have returned to doing what I love to do - running. I also experienced growth and personal development on my recovery journey. On the one year anniversary of my surgery, I looked back on all that I had accomplished since surgery.
I had run over 1,500 miles (all pain free!), logged my highest mileage week ever (65 miles!), run the Boston Marathon, setting a new PR (3:17:28), and set many more new goals for the future.
I am so thankful that I was able to do all of these things, and I wouldn’t have been able to run the first mile without Dr. Emblom having repaired my hip labrum. When I started to run again several months after my labral repair, I thought of Dr. Emblom as a part of my team - one of the people that was pushing me and helping me to go after my goals.
He didn’t know that he was on my team, because I had been released from his care long before, but when I crossed the finish line in Boston, everyone who helped me get there was in my mind, and I am so grateful for all of them!