Runner Recovery Tips: Dr. Rory Johnson

Runner Recovery Tips: Dr. Rory Johnson




Running or biking a big event this summer? Dr. Rory Johnson, primary care/family medicine provider at Door County Medical Center Clinic Fish Creek has tips for a speedy post-race recovery:

  • Fuel. Have a light snack within 20 minutes. A four to one carbohydrate to protein ratio is ideal, such as banana with peanut butter or yogurt and granola. The evening after your run, have a decent meal balancing protein, carbs and fat.
  • Stretch. Within 30 minutes of finishing your run, stretch for 10-15 minutes, focusing on major muscle groups, with extra attention to any areas that felt sore during the event.
  • Hydrate. Within first 10-15 minutes, drink plenty of water or electrolyte drink, and keep up water intake for the rest of the day. “Even if the temperature is cool, you’ll lose lots of fluid. Keeping muscles hydrated will help prevent soreness.”
  • Rest. Put your feet up, or better yet, take a nap. If you need an excuse for a massage, now is the time!
  • Bathe. Within an hour or two of bed, take a warm bath. After a bath, stretch again before sleeping. A bath also helps with a good night’s sleep, another key factor in recovery.

Training for a run? Find tips for preparation here.


Kelsie Ladick: Touching the Community

Taking care of students from Gibraltar to Southern Door is all in a day’s work for Kelsie Ladick, LPN. Kelsie serves children through Door County Medical Center’s (DCMC) school nursing program. “Our mission is to keep local students healthy so they can learn and grow,” she says. A typical day for Kelsie includes illness and injury assessment, medication administration and educating staff on students’ medical needs and conditions.

LadickKelsie has been with DCMC since 2010, and has worked as a school nurse since 2014. Her first few years at the hospital, she worked in the Skilled Nursing Facility and the DCMC Clinic. “I’ve spent much of my career working with seniors, and now I am enjoying caring for children and seeing that end of the spectrum,” she says.

She says she and other school nursing staff are a resource for community members. “When DCMC made the transition to partnering with HSHS, we had a lot of school staff and parents asking us about that. We were able to tell them that the quality of care wouldn’t change, and they’d have access to more specialists.”

In the community at large, Kelsie is also a go-to person for other parents and kids. “I have two boys, so I spend a lot of time at sporting events, often in my scrubs,” she says. She often fields medical questions, and helps with injuries and assessments on the field and on the court.

DCMC’s school nursing program serves the Gibraltar, Southern Door and Sturgeon Bay districts.


DCMC Collaborates with Schools to Promote Teen Health and Combat Social Injustice

For the third straight year, Door County Medical Center (DCMC) is collaborating with Door County high schools to present LEAP -The Human Kindness Project, an innovative multi-media performance featuring teen performers from throughout Door County. The performance encourages conversations on anti-bullying, compassion and inclusion as well as promoting mental health in teens.


“The most effective tools anti-bullying advocates have are prevention and education. LEAP is triumphantly raising awareness through art, while involving youth in a worthwhile project that enhances their own health and well-being,” says Kevin Grohskopf, chief business development officer at DCMC.

LEAP (Learning to Empower and Appreciate all People) promotes a violence-free message and presents themes of acceptance and social justice. The performance encourages positive thinking, community, and personal growth through dance, spoken word, music, and the visual arts.

Since 2014, LEAP performances have reached more than 2,100 local high school students and general audience members. More than 90 teens have participated in the show.

This year’s performance, titled “A New World: Building a Healthy Community” centers on the theme of healthy relationships. Community performances are scheduled for Friday, April 21 at 7:00 p.m. and Sunday, April 23 at 2:00 p.m. at the Southern Door Auditorium.


Advance Care Planning: Why to Do it Now

Imagine…you are in the hospital and you can’t speak for yourself. Who will speak for you? With an advance directive, your loved ones are empowered to make choices about your health care, and can act with the knowledge that they are following your wishes. An advance directive is a document that states a person’s choices for medical treatment and/or names a health care agent, usually a family member or close friend.

April 16 marks National Health Decisions Day (NHDD), when people are encouraged, regardless of age or health status, to create an advance directive. The task is surprisingly simple. But while 90 percent of Americans have heard of advance directives, only 29 percent have them. The staff at Door County Medical Center want to help change this, by offering free counseling, to help individuals create their advance directives.

Notary pen lying on testament. Notary public working accesories

“An advance directive makes your health care and end-of-life wishes known, including medical, emotional and spiritual care,” says Katie Graf, social worker at DCMC. “But it also relieves the burden on family members,” she says. “Too often, we see cases of people hospitalized or on life support who don’t have this document, forcing the family to petition the court for guardianship of their own loved one.” This is both a financial and emotional burden on the family.

While nobody goes out of their way to discuss end-of-life care, Graf says the best time to plan is when you are healthy. “We encourage families to discuss end-of-life wishes and create advance directives when they are together. This could be around the dinner table or when a family is on a vacation together.” But to be legally valid, advance directives must be written down and witnessed. Copies of your advance directive should be given to your doctor and your health care agent, and stored in an easily accessible place.

Here are some ways to get help with an advance directive:

  • Any day of the year, Call DCMC at 920.743.5566 and ask to speak with a social worker or chaplain, who are available 8 a.m.- 4 p.m.
  • April 26th from 2-4 p.m. at the United Methodist Church, DCMC staff will present a program on advance directives through Aging Mastery Program. Contact the Door County Senior Center for more information.
  • Visit for more information.

Top Mistakes Runners Make (And How to Avoid Them)

Bill Herbst, physical therapist and athletic trainer at Door County Medical Center (DCMC), is part of the medical team that supports athletic events and schools throughout the county. During his ten years working the Door County Half Marathon, he’s seen a variety of ailments, many of which are preventable.


Here are a few of the missteps athletes make, and what you can do have a more comfortable, safe and enjoyable run:

Shin splints. “Running in worn-out shoes can lead to overuse injuries such as tendonitis and what runners call shin splints. Invest in high-quality shoes, and replace them every 300-500 miles,” says Herbst.

Dehydration. It’s important to hydrate well the day of the race, and for a couple of days before. “Sometimes people think because it’s early May, they don’t need as much hydration, but that’s not the case.” Take advantage of water/sports beverage stations along the course

Cramps. Eat healthy food, including protein and carbohydrates, one to two days before the race. “I encourage runners to take advantage of pasta dinners the night before; they’re fun and they offer good nutrition.” Reduce alcohol consumption before the race, and opt for bananas or other fruit the day of.

Blisters. Blisters on the feet can be prevented with properly fitted shoes, but blisters and chafing on thighs, underarms or chest can also be avoided by applying petroleum jelly to these areas before the race.

Young runner having an accident outside in spring canola fieldExercise-induced asthma. If you’re prone to asthma, bring your inhaler. Any other critical medications should be accessible as well.

Overextension. “Runners should have a general idea of their timing goal, and stick with it.” There are several pacer groups that accompany runners to help them gauge their speed. “Touch base with pacers before the race, they are a great resource.”

Sunburn. With a huge variation in possible weather, it’s important to remember that May sun is potent, especially as most athletes will be outdoors for several hours. Apply a water-resistant sunscreen that will protect from glare and reflection.

If these or any other problems still occur, Herbst reminds runners to take advantage of the many medical stations along the course, or see the DCMC athletic trainers, physicians and nurses in the medical tent. “We’re looking forward to being here for athletes and to another great event this year,” says Herbst.


Cyberbullying: What You Need to Know

Cyberbullying – mean, threatening or hurtful messages sent via text message or social media – is more common in kids’ lives than ever. Recent data shows nearly 36 percent of Door County Middle school students and 20 percent of high school students report being electronically bullied. Since kids are connected to their phones for most of their waking hours, cyberbullying can happen anytime. “It’s easier to do, since perpetrators don’t have to see their victims and often act anonymously. Because technology is ever-present, victims may not even feel safe in their own homes,” says Barb Johnson-Giese, licensed clinical social worker at Door County Medical Center.

Teenage Girl Victim Of Bullying By Text Messaging

There are ways to combat cyberbullying. Here are some tips for parents and kids from Johnson-Giese to help cope with and minimize exposure to cyberbullying.

  • Involve yourself. Know what your kids are looking at on their phones, including being aware of what social media sites they’re using. “Just as we ask children to let us know where they will be when they leave the house, parents should be asking kids where they are spending their time online.”
  • Model responsible phone use. Make phone use expectations clear with children. “Being respectful to others in communication and making sure others are respectful of them are two key messages,” says Johnson-Giese. Above all, adults should be examples of these behaviors.
  • Have conversations. Kids don’t always have the experience or ability to understand the long-term effects of their actions. Open conversation about online communication can help kids sort out how to act and react online.
  • Be proactive. If kids are on the receiving end of bullying behaviors, let them know it’s not okay or acceptable. Blocking bullies, not responding and reporting bullies are all ways to deal positively with the situation. “Although some parents are inclined to take away a child’s phone if they’re being bullied, that can feel like a punishment to the child.”
  • Use the news. Cyberbullying situations are often in the news. Use the opportunity as a chance to have a neutral discussion about the topic, asking questions like “What would you do in this situation?”

High-touch and High-tech: State of the Art Technology and Compassionate Care Go Hand in Hand

Think you need to travel to a large city to get the best in medical technology? Think again. Door County Medical Center (DCMC) is committed to providing the latest in high-tech diagnostic imaging equipment to serve patients. And services are provided by local, experienced staff who care for generations of families.

DCMC’s new Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) machine is the latest in cutting-edge technology, helping doctors diagnose and care for patients with needs including oncology, injuries and vascular issues.

Picture of MRI Scanner

“This state-of-the-art machine not only provides extremely detailed images, but it also allows patients to experience MRI in a more comfortable, spacious setting,” says Amanda Feldbruegge, director of diagnostic imaging at DCMC.

“Our new MRI scanner is larger and more easily tolerated by claustrophobic patients,” says Donald Renfrew, radiologist at DCMC. “In addition, the new machine has improved the quality of the images.  These improvements allow more confident diagnosis leading to better patient care.”

Patients agree that the combination of high-tech and personalized care make their experience stand out. “The new machine is less noisy than I had experienced in the past.  It was very comfortable and I didn’t feel so confined.  The technicians are always very nice, and that makes all the difference,” says patient Caroline Link.

In addition to the new MRI machine, DCMC recently added a new CT scanner, becoming the third hospital in the United States to adopt new technology that reduces streaks from implanted metal such as rods and pacemakers.

“The combination of leading edge technology and compassionate care helps us provide the best possible outcomes for our patients,” says Feldbruegge.


Jeff Heck: Leading and Serving

For Jeff Heck, a Door County Medical Center Auxiliary member, volunteering in the DCMC Outpatient Surgical Unit (OPSU) is like coming full circle. “I started my career as a paramedic, then worked in management consulting with pharmaceutical companies, so I’ve always been interested in medicine.” Now, Jeff is one of more than twenty volunteers who help surgical patients at DCMC to feel cared for.

Jeff’s volunteer duties are many, including stocking refrigerators with snacks and drinks, maintaining supplies and helping patients travel from the waiting room to the operating room to post-op. But above all, Jeff’s job is to welcome patients and provide a friendly face that stays with them and their family throughout their day.

Heck“When we ride up in the elevator, you can tell which patients are anxious,” he says. “I always reassure them, letting them know they will be in great hands with the phenomenal staff and surgeons.” Then, throughout a patient’s time in OPSU, Jeff makes sure they have everything from a warm blanket, to a snack and cup of coffee while in recovery. “I tell them I’m part of their team, and I’m here for them. If they need anything or have any questions, I’ll get them what they need.”

The work is easy for Jeff, because he believes in the care patients are receiving. “The staff is just amazing: nurses, surgeons and anesthesiologists. They’re all so personable and their outcomes are outstanding.”  Like all volunteers, Jeff is encouraged to offer feedback to DCMC staff. “Gwen Haight, manager of surgical services at DCMC, works closely with us and values our contributions and suggestions. Since my area of expertise was process engineering, I have ideas, and the staff is very open to them.”

Jeff and his wife, Gloria, moved full-time to Door County three years ago, after spending time seasonally in the country for a decade. “After getting settled, we began to look for a place where we could contribute.” They both found the Auxiliary to be a perfect fit. In addition to his weekly volunteer time in the OPSU, Jeff is vice president of the Auxiliary, while Gloria volunteers at the Dental Clinic and DCMC gift shop and serves as chair of this year’s House and Garden Walk.

While Jeff encourages people of all ages and backgrounds to consider membership in the Auxiliary, he is especially eager to welcome more men. “Of our membership of 200, there are about a dozen men. We want men to know they have a key role to play in our Auxiliary and there are many ways they can be involved, including those that don’t require direct patient contact. We welcome anyone who wants to serve.”


Daylight Savings Time and Your Health

Ever since President Franklin Delano Roosevelt instituted Daylight Savings Time in 1942, Americans have been setting their clocks – spring forward, fall back – to account for seasonal changes in light.

Blue alarm clock

But Daylight Savings Time (DST) doesn’t come without some health effects. Studies show there is an increase in both heart attacks and road accidents in the days after DST in the spring, with a 6 percent increase in vehicle crashes immediate after resetting clocks in March. Workplace injuries also increase by 5.7 percent on Monday following the time change. The time change can also disrupt sleep cycles, leading to restless nights and sleepiness and irritability during the day.


There are ways to cope with potential side effects of Daylight Savings Time. Try these tips from the experts at the DCMC Sleep Facility to minimize effects on your safety, mood and health. And above all, remember: come fall, we’ll get that hour back!

  • Eat a healthy breakfast the day of DST, including protein.
  • Avoid caffeine and other stimulants after lunch.
  • Try not to nap in the day or two following DST.
  • Wake a bit earlier on the Friday and Saturday preceding the DST switch.
  • Get some sun: exposing yourself to natural light helps your body reset.
  • Help your child adjust by making bedtime a bit earlier the week before DST.

Spring Training Tips for Runners

Dr. Rory Johnson, primary care physician at Door County Medical Center’s Fish Creek Clinic, is an avid runner and enjoys taking part in the Door County Half Marathon. He also advises his patients on safe and effective training. Dr. Johnson can often be found on the sidelines at high school sporting events, supporting DCMC athletic trainers and physical therapists in keeping student athletes safe and in good health.


Here are a few spring training tips from Dr. Johnson:

  • Take it slow. After the more sedentary winter season, increase your running distance gradually. “During the week, I stick with three to four mile runs, then on the weekends, gradually add an extra mile until I reach 10-12 miles,” he says.
  • Rest and recover. One or two days a week, take a break from running. Instead, go for a short walk to keep the blood flowing, do yoga or try a light weight-lifting routine.
  • Fluids, fluids, fluids. After running more than 30 minutes, have a recovery drink to replace electrolytes and a protein-packed snack to aid in muscle recovery. Prior to running, it’s important to stay hydrated – even in the days and week leading up to a big event.
  • Stretch. The most important time to stretch is after a run or workout. This prevents sore muscles the following day. “If you can get a massage after a big event, even better.”
  • Protect joints. Get fitted at a sports equipment store to find a shoe that works best for you, and invest in a high-quality shoe. “When running on the road, be mindful of shoulders that can be ‘crowned’ or uneven. Find the spot on the road that is most flat to avoid wear and tear on joints.”