Patti after climbing a mountain

In her 60s, Patti faced a potential life-changing back surgery.  In the end, she went from this invasive surgery to hiking to the top of a mountain in 6 months.  Her story is so inspirational…enjoy!

“37 years of providing nursing care in a variety of disciplines took its toll on my back! After a year and a half of medical interventions including physical therapy, epidurals, pain medicine, acupuncture, and chiropractic treatment, I decided to have lumbar spinal fusion surgery in January. I cried the night of my surgery because, for the first time in a long time, I felt no pain when I got out of bed!

My recovery journey was difficult- I felt like someone had removed my abdominal muscles and my lower back felt stiff and swollen. 1 month after surgery I started physical therapy that my doctor had ordered. Six weeks of therapy really started to improve my range of motion and help relieve the stiffness.   I knew I needed guidance to continue my recovery to the active lifestyle I had lived prior to my back issues. I also had a vacation looming in June to Europe that was planned 2 years prior. Hiking in the Swiss Alps was on the agenda and I worried if I would have the strength and stamina to do that post-op!

Patti on mountain

I knew where to go for help- Doug at Sensible Fitness! I had gone to Doug in 2014 with my friend Julie to help become stronger, more toned, and lose weight. My experience with him was life-altering! I learned the importance of eating right and taking care and strengthening my body. I made lifestyle changes that I adhere to today! With his Physical Therapy background, I felt he could safely help me get to the next level of rehabbing my back. I started going 2x/week in early May. Not only has my core and back strength greatly improved, but my outlook and confidence are much better. After 6 weeks of working with Doug and doing my home exercises, I left for Europe and hiked almost 2 miles up the side of Jungfrau, “the top of Europe” mountain in the Swiss Alps through 8-12 inches of snow and 30-degree weather. I was exhilarated and felt a heart full of gratitude to Doug and his staff for helping me attain this feat, not even 5 months post-surgery!   I continue to work with Doug to help improve my strength, range, and core. I feel so blessed that I had him to turn to for help in getting my life back!”

Patti McElroy

CategoryLow Back Pain

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