How Bill Hartman Ended My 8-Year Battle with Chronic Pain - Indianapolis Fitness And Sports Training
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How Bill Hartman Ended My 8-Year Battle with Chronic Pain

written by Jae Chung

As some of you know, I started as a client at IFAST in 2011 before I became an intern, and eventually a full-time coach. I actually drove 90 minutes each way from Bloomington, Indiana to train here about once a week. Why was I willing to spend 3 hours in a car “just” to train at a gym in Indianapolis? I was in a lot of pain, and I was desperate to make it go away.

It all started when I was studying martial arts full-time in 2003. I was on my feet for at least 8 hours a day, taking classes, practicing, and teaching.

My feet started hurting more and more over the course of the year. At first I thought I just needed to stay off my feet for a few days to recover, but as the months went on, nothing seemed to make it better.

By the end of the year, I was unable to stand for more than 15 minutes without pain. It was a burning, searing sensation on the bottoms of my feet.

By the 5th or 6th year, I would even sit down to brush my teeth — that’s how bad the pain was. I was completely MISERABLE.

At 26 years of age, I would ride those electric carts if I had to go to the grocery store by myself, because standing in line at the checkout counter for 5 minutes was excruciating.

If you’re using one of these when you are 26 years old and otherwise healthy-looking, people look at you funny.

It was humiliating and demoralizing. Here I was, in the prime years of my life, and every day of my life was torture.

When I was looking for jobs, I had to limit myself to jobs where I could sit all day.

(I eventually started developing even more problems from sitting 8+ hours a day, too — hip pain and back pain — but that’s another story altogether!)

My social life suffered, too. I couldn’t do anything fun, like go to parties or amusement parks, because I was afraid of making the pain worse. I got unreasonably angry if I ever ran into someone on the street and had to make small talk for a few minutes, because I was in agony while they were smiling and talking about the weather.

I tried everything: $500 custom-made orthotics, visits to specialist podiatrists in Chicago, stretching, taping, icing, ibuprofen, prescription drugs, hating the world, and feeling sorry for myself. None of these worked at all (especially the last two).

This is pretty much how I felt right around year 5 or 6.

Finally, when I got really desperate, I found IFAST.

During my initial assessment, I explained my sob story to Bill Hartman, and he seemed nonchalantly confident that he could make my foot pain go away.

Now, Bill is a nationally recognized physical therapist, and widely considered one of the smartest people in the fitness industry. At this point I was convinced that I was going to live the rest of my life in excruciating pain, so I was skeptical that Bill knew what he was talking about.

But then Bill explained to me, “You don’t have a foot problem. You have a hip problem.”

My hips were shifted too far forward, so my calves and feet were never to relax. They were tight all the time because they were keeping me from falling forward!

I thought this made sense, but I still didn’t believe that my foot pain would truly go away. But over the next six months, I gradually got better. I was able to stand for 15 minutes at a time, then an hour, then several hours!

Today, when I am coaching at IFAST, I am routinely on my feet for over 8 hours a day, all pain-free.

When I look back on my pain-filled 8 years, I’m grateful that I found Bill, and that he was accurately able to diagnose the real cause of my pain. He gave me my life back, and that’s no exaggeration. I can go to the grocery store, stand around at parties talking to people, and yes, even brush my teeth while standing up!

Bill is amazing at weeding through the symptoms to get to the root cause of pain, and prescribing the right exercises to correct the problem. We’re lucky to have him here at IFAST. So if you’re in pain, and you’ve tried everything, and you’re sick of being in pain, please give us a call at 317-578-0998. If anybody can get you fixed up, it’s Bill and the rest of the coaching crew here at IFAST!

Jae Chung

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