Why My First Acupuncture Experience Was Incredible

Hi Guys! How’s your Thursday? Hope you’re having a wonderful morning so far!

Last weekend I was my first acupuncture experience. One of my friends is into holistic healing and recommended I try acupuncture for the burning knot that’s been in my calf since my injury. I have to be honest. I’m not one of those people who was ever into the holistic thing nor have I ever experienced it to have an opinion on it neither. 

Over the last few months, I’ve seen multiple doctors and sports therapists and no one can tell me what’s going on with my body. I have an array of problems. From foot injury in January after a half marathon (which I now know was a stress fracture from the MRI done two weeks ago), a burning knot in my calf that would not release causing so much pain that I wanted to cut off my leg, limited mobility in my legs, inflammation everywhere, lack of hunger, stomach bloating, night sweats and a general feeling of being out of whack.

After asking a few other runner friends & getting the “you won’t regret it response,” I didn’t think twice about doing it. At this point, I was willing to try anything to feel better. So I found an acupuncture place and made an appointment last weekend to see a holistic doctor. 

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After a consultation with the doctor, he told me I have a lot of issues going on. Yeah, no kidding. He explained that when we get injured sometimes certain areas of the body don’t awaken or don’t calm down on their own. It’s like a classroom where some kids are asleep and others are yelling & screaming. You need to calm everyone down.

First, he did a calcium and zinc test on me and I failed miserably. I’m deficient in several minerals and likely EFA’s (essential fatty acids). We didn’t take those tests further, but I plan on investigating them more with him. Then he asked if my lower back hurt. I told him, yes it’s been feeling sore and it’s made sitting or laying down for too long painful. My legs begin to tingle. He told me he suspected I had a pinched nerve in my back radiating into the calf. I can’t believe I never thought my spine could be causing the calf pain or any of the doctors for that matter. It makes sense though. For months, I wore a boot which probably shifted my pelvis and my body was also compensating for my foot by not trying not to put weight on it. 

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I don’t see a chiropractor on a regular basis. Actually, last year was the first time in probably 10 years that  I went to one. (I had a rib slide out of place and needed helped popping it back in place – that was painful!) He adjusted my spine and immediately my back felt better. My calf was still the same. After the adjustment, he started the acupuncture treatment. It wasn’t the traditional lying down because of the particular focus on my legs. By the way, please excuse my toes. I had nerve damage from the injury that caused my toes nails to fall out months ago. No pretty toes for me. I know this happens regularly to runners, but thankfully this is the only time it’s happened to me. Hopefully, they will grow back one day. 

Going into this, I was really scared of the needles. Surprisingly they didn’t hurt. Well, the baby toes hurt. It felt like a quick poke and once they’re in you don’t notice they’re there. I relaxed for 30 minutes in the chair. Toward the end, I felt something happen in my leg. It was like a wave-like sensation. It’s difficult to describe. When it was finished, I didn’t feel any different. He told me he wanted me to come back in a week so I reluctantly scheduled an appointment thinking in the back of my mind I would cancel it later.

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I left his office and a few hours later I noticed something was going on with my stomach. For months, I’ve felt like my digestion was off. Around bed time things started moving around a lot. My digestive system was working differently. It felt like things were flowing again vs the trapped, bloated feeling I’ve had for so long. 

The next morning the most incredible thing happened to me. I woke up feeling refreshed and super energized. In fact, I felt so much energy, more energy than I’ve had in a really long time. I can’t even describe it. Then there was the incredible thing with my legs. They felt alive again. I feel things in my feet & legs that I haven’t felt in months. The most amazing part was the burning knot pain in my calf was gone. I paced all over my bedroom trying to get it aggravated, but nothing. I could not believe it. Since last weekend, I’ve worked out really hard every morning trying to get my calf angry but still no knot just a little tenderness.

Yesterday I saw my foot doctor. He was amazed by my experience too. He recommended I stick with acupuncture. He still believes I have symptoms of compartment syndrome. We discussed a plan for me to begin increasing my fitness building up my mileage gradually. Apparently, walking or running 10 miles right away is not recommended. This probably seems obvious to most but for me I’ve been doing long distances for so many years doing less seems really strange. If my calf doesn’t cooperate, then I will get tested for compartment syndrome. 

I don’t know what happened to me that day, but my legs feel 100% better and I can workout without feeling like my legs are going to fall off. I still have a dull achy tenderness in my calf, it’s not the deep burning I wanna cutoff my leg kinda pain though. Today I’m seeing the holistic doctor again. Who knows maybe there really is something to all the hooky voodoo? Whatever it is, it’s voodooawesome!

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Have you tried acupuncture? Do you believe in holistic medicine? How do you think my pain disappeared?

Today I’m linking up with Amanada @ Running with Spoons for Thinking Out Loud.

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