Proof Even The Best Doctors Don’t Always Get It

AllanMisner
AllanMisner Posts: 4,152 Member
edited March 2015 in Fitness and Exercise
So, I went into my doctor today to get a dexa scan and look at my blood panel. As I suspected, because I was focused on strength and not bf% (and I could see in the mirror), I’ve put on a few points of fat. I tell him I had been focusing on my lifting and was eating a surplus so I expected bad numbers (bf and panel, not to mention the stress at work). He asked what I was benching, I tell him, but say that’s not the lift I care about, I’m all about my deadlift number. He cringes, and says, “Oh, you have to be careful about that. You could really hurt your back.” I say, “Not with good form.” He agrees, but repeats his warning to be careful.

Realize, I have the utmost respect for this guy. I drive 4 hours to see him. He’s one of the few doctors that understands that when we manage our health, we don’t have to manage as much illness. But even the best doctors don’t fully understand the best way to maximize your health. They buy into certain paradigms and don’t consider the individual’s goals and aspirations as a part of the end-game.

You have to be an active participant in managing your health. Educate yourself so you can have intelligent, educated conversations with your health practitioners, be a it a doctor, a personal trainer, a nutritionist, etc. You have to be your biggest advocate.

Replies

  • jarambar
    jarambar Posts: 10 Member
    Well said.
  • maxit
    maxit Posts: 880 Member
    He was right though - you DO have to be careful with DL form esp when you start loading heavy.
  • brandiuntz
    brandiuntz Posts: 2,731 Member
    I love my doctor, but she throws out the random "don't run too much" to me, knowing I'm a runner that runs half-marathons.
  • Mr_Knight
    Mr_Knight Posts: 9,534 Member
    Not sure I'm following - what did he say that was wrong?
  • Azdak
    Azdak Posts: 8,281 Member
    Docs are stuck in a difficult place. They receive virtually no training in fitness and nutrition, yet are increasingly expected to give authoritative counsel in those areas.
  • lauracups
    lauracups Posts: 536 Member
    I have a very low opinion of western medicine after my experiences. At my heaviest and at the height of my pain (due to spinal injury) doctors just wanted to throw Lyrica and harsh anti-inflammatory meds at me following with a stern "well women Your Age need to work out 90 minutes a day Just To Maintain their weight and eat 1200 calories. It took me a long journey of other methods to find pain relief and weight loss. I'm down 50 and on NO meds, because I didn't listen to the "experts"
  • BrianSharpe
    BrianSharpe Posts: 9,161 Member
    lauracups wrote: »
    I have a very low opinion of western medicine after my experiences. At my heaviest and at the height of my pain (due to spinal injury) doctors just wanted to throw Lyrica and harsh anti-inflammatory meds at me following with a stern "well women Your Age need to work out 90 minutes a day Just To Maintain their weight and eat 1200 calories. It took me a long journey of other methods to find pain relief and weight loss. I'm down 50 and on NO meds, because I didn't listen to the "experts"

    Based on an n=1 anecdote I'm convinced that all doctors are quacks........ >:)

    To the OP, I agree we have to take personal responsibility for our wellness but I don't really see what your Dr wrong, the admonition to exercise care when deadlifting is sound.

  • EvgeniZyntx
    EvgeniZyntx Posts: 24,208 Member
    I have yet to meet a physician that doesn't understand, "when we manage our health, we don’t have to manage as much illness." But who knows, I've only spent 25 years in the health/biomed. field.

    Also, I have rarely met a physician that doesn't understand the single blood panel results do not stand alone as evidence that something is wrong and take into account a more overall view.

    In terms of sport and nutrition, well, often enough it's like any medical area - there are specialists for specific problems or needs.

    I do agree with:
    You have to be an active participant in managing your health. Educate yourself so you can have intelligent, educated conversations with your health practitioners, be a it a doctor, a personal trainer, a nutritionist, etc. You have to be your biggest advocate.

    I'm afraid this thread is gonna head towards generalized doc bashing...
  • Azdak
    Azdak Posts: 8,281 Member
    I have yet to meet a physician that doesn't understand, "when we manage our health, we don’t have to manage as much illness." But who knows, I've only spent 25 years in the health/biomed. field.

    Also, I have rarely met a physician that doesn't understand the single blood panel results do not stand alone as evidence that something is wrong and take into account a more overall view.

    In terms of sport and nutrition, well, often enough it's like any medical area - there are specialists for specific problems or needs.

    I do agree with:
    You have to be an active participant in managing your health. Educate yourself so you can have intelligent, educated conversations with your health practitioners, be a it a doctor, a personal trainer, a nutritionist, etc. You have to be your biggest advocate.

    I'm afraid this thread is gonna head towards generalized doc bashing...

    That was certainly not my intent. I was actually expressing sympathy that doctors are increasingly being expected to have the same level of expertise in the areas of exercise and nutrition that they have in medicine. Yet they receive years of training in medicine, but almost no training in exercise and nutrition.

    It's part of the greater issue that society in general doesn't see exercise and fitness as an area of specialty knowledge. Most of the best known "fitness experts" are worthless boobs (albeit with expensive boobs). Because "fitness" is something that permeates our popular culture, everyone thinks they are knowledgeable on the subject, and doctors are not exempt from that attitude.

    Again, I don't mean that as criticism. IMO, doctors shouldn't be wasting their time becoming fitness specialists. That's my job. They should be big on supporting and encouraging patients to follow positive exercise and diet habits, but not get so involved in providing specifics. In an ideal world, there would be a better system in which docs could easily refer people to fitness specialists and dietitians to provide the hands-on instructions. Some do it, but not enough.

  • TR0berts
    TR0berts Posts: 7,739 Member
    ...ok? You agreed with him - you need to be careful. Bad form = not being careful enough.
  • tmauck4472
    tmauck4472 Posts: 1,783 Member
    I personally think he got it right. With a warning to be careful and why you should be careful. He doesn't want to see you with a back injury so therefore the warning. He did his job as your doctor and as a doctor that cares about your well being not just your health. Notice he didn't say Don't do that, just be careful doing that.

    As with anything you take the advice, weigh out your options, goals and desires and then decide what's best for you. If it turns out he was right then there you go, if he was wrong then you just move on. Even the best of doctors aren't perfect, yours seems pretty legit based on that advice.
  • bostonwolf
    bostonwolf Posts: 3,049 Member
    So, I went into my doctor today to get a dexa scan and look at my blood panel. As I suspected, because I was focused on strength and not bf% (and I could see in the mirror), I’ve put on a few points of fat. I tell him I had been focusing on my lifting and was eating a surplus so I expected bad numbers (bf and panel, not to mention the stress at work). He asked what I was benching, I tell him, but say that’s not the lift I care about, I’m all about my deadlift number. He cringes, and says, “Oh, you have to be careful about that. You could really hurt your back.” I say, “Not with good form.” He agrees, but repeats his warning to be careful.

    Realize, I have the utmost respect for this guy. I drive 4 hours to see him. He’s one of the few doctors that understands that when we manage our health, we don’t have to manage as much illness. But even the best doctors don’t fully understand the best way to maximize your health. They buy into certain paradigms and don’t consider the individual’s goals and aspirations as a part of the end-game.

    You have to be an active participant in managing your health. Educate yourself so you can have intelligent, educated conversations with your health practitioners, be a it a doctor, a personal trainer, a nutritionist, etc. You have to be your biggest advocate.

    I can't fault him too much. He never said "don't do it" and I bet he sees a TON of guys with back injuries related to deadlifting.

    My doctor is pretty good. She never bothers mentioning BMI to me any more after I pointed out that even at my ideal weight (call it 230, where I'd have about 15% bf) I'd still be obese according to BMI.

  • AllanMisner
    AllanMisner Posts: 4,152 Member
    Actually, he did imply that I shouldn’t do deadlifts. He was fine with the rest of my program, but wanted me to drop deadlifts. I told him I understand the appropriate form and know my limits.

    What I didn’t say was that I feel deadlifts are the single best thing I’ve ever done for my health and fitness. When they are done well, they have so many health benefits, I believe they are well worth the risk. If I were to cut something, it would be back squats. There are many more points of failure (form, mobility) in that lift.
  • TR0berts
    TR0berts Posts: 7,739 Member
    Did he imply it, or did you infer it? ;)
  • rileyes
    rileyes Posts: 1,402 Member
    I have yet to meet a physician that doesn't understand, "when we manage our health, we don’t have to manage as much illness." But who knows, I've only spent 25 years in the health/biomed. field.

    Also, I have rarely met a physician that doesn't understand the single blood panel results do not stand alone as evidence that something is wrong and take into account a more overall view.

    In terms of sport and nutrition, well, often enough it's like any medical area - there are specialists for specific problems or needs.

    I do agree with:
    You have to be an active participant in managing your health. Educate yourself so you can have intelligent, educated conversations with your health practitioners, be a it a doctor, a personal trainer, a nutritionist, etc. You have to be your biggest advocate.

    I'm afraid this thread is gonna head towards generalized doc bashing...

    Yes! My guy's a Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist. He is also involved in a pain clinic and eating disorder group. He works with various professionals to help his clients. He's not a Dietician, Kinesiologist or Orthapedic Surgeon.
  • ninerbuff
    ninerbuff Posts: 46,321 Member
    Azdak wrote: »
    Docs are stuck in a difficult place. They receive virtually no training in fitness and nutrition, yet are increasingly expected to give authoritative counsel in those areas.
    THIS. While on a routine visit for a physical check up with my doc when I lived in VA, he commented that I look like I work out. I confirmed it and he asked what muscles I trained that day. When I told him shoulders, he asked what exercises and as soon as I told him seated shoulder presses, he shook his head immediately and began lecturing on how bad it was on the lumbar structure. Apparently it was discussed at a doc's convention. Yet when asked an orthopedist in the same hospital, he said they were fine to do if form was correct. Go figure.

    A.C.E. Certified Personal and Group Fitness Trainer
    IDEA Fitness member
    Kickboxing Certified Instructor
    Been in fitness for 30 years and have studied kinesiology and nutrition

    9285851.png
  • AllanMisner
    AllanMisner Posts: 4,152 Member
    rileyes wrote: »
    There are lots of fat, smoking and McDonalds-eating doctors. @AllanMisner -- I think you said you travelled a distance to go to a certain doctor? You may have to go a bit further to find one who is as fit as you. Orthapedic surgeons are built like athletes. They do a lot of lifting and pounding (on their patients). My (very-athletic) niece wanted to be one but was looking in the direction of pediatrics.

    This guy is a great doctor (and quite fit), don’t get me wrong. My overall point was that even the best doctors can get caught up in a belief system that, while right for most people, isn’t right for you. Like the 80/20 rule, they follow a set of rules that apply to most people and those rules get hard wired (he also doesn’t want me eating red meat or egg yolks, even though more and more studies are debunking the war on saturated fat).

    I only posted this because I want people to be their own best advocate. Learn about health and fitness. Listen to the advice of experts, but realize that even they may have some beliefs that aren’t quite right for you. We get second opinions, but even then, you have to make the right choices for yourself.
  • rileyes
    rileyes Posts: 1,402 Member
    edited March 2015
    rileyes wrote: »
    There are lots of fat, smoking and McDonalds-eating doctors. @AllanMisner -- I think you said you travelled a distance to go to a certain doctor? You may have to go a bit further to find one who is as fit as you. Orthapedic surgeons are built like athletes. They do a lot of lifting and pounding (on their patients). My (very-athletic) niece wanted to be one but was looking in the direction of pediatrics.

    This guy is a great doctor (and quite fit), don’t get me wrong. My overall point was that even the best doctors can get caught up in a belief system that, while right for most people, isn’t right for you. Like the 80/20 rule, they follow a set of rules that apply to most people and those rules get hard wired (he also doesn’t want me eating red meat or egg yolks, even though more and more studies are debunking the war on saturated fat).

    I only posted this because I want people to be their own best advocate. Learn about health and fitness. Listen to the advice of experts, but realize that even they may have some beliefs that aren’t quite right for you. We get second opinions, but even then, you have to make the right choices for yourself.

    @AllanMisner Sorry. I read your post again.
    Agreed.
    Doctors have to get a certain amount of CMEs (continuing medical education) per year. They choose the area - could be a seminar on traveling medicine or pharmacology or whatever interests them most. So not all are going to be, perhaps, as knowledgable as you in the fitness category. But, I'll bet your doctor may be brushing up if you gave him a little education.