PT Thursday Feature: John Herbert


This past April 20th, I participated in my first Boston Marathon. Having run for over 30+ years, and competitively for about the first 10 years, attempting to qualify for Boston was like returning home. It was exciting and rewarding to have a specific running and training goal again. Even though I had worked as an orthopedic physical therapist for many years, I had always found the study of the physiology of training and exercise fascinating. My own road to running in Boston began after one of the runners in my church running group attempted to qualify for the Boston marathon. As the group leader, though I was an experienced runner, I had no experience running a marathon, and could offer no training advice. I decided then, about 3 years ago, I would train for a marathon. I missed the qualifying for Boston by 2 minutes in my second marathon, and I was hooked to keep trying to qualify. My 3rd attempt last June, I was able to make the qualifying mark by about 6 minutes.

There is a brave 5-year-old boy named Chase in the Sunday School class I help teach who was diagnosed with Atypical Teratoid Rhabdoid Tumor (more commonly referred to as “AT/RT” or ATRT) brain cancer on July 31, 2012. ATRT brain cancer is highly malignant, and has a high mortality rate. Chase underwent a large and successful brain surgery on August 2nd, 2012 and started a very aggressive chemo protocol later in the same month after completing proton radiation December 2012. He has lingering effects from the treatment, including some permanent hearing and hair loss as well as some physical and mental challenges. Despite a recent clean bill of health, Chase’s cancer journey is not over. His latest MRI showed small growths in and around the original tumor site, which his doctors are closely monitoring.

My goal was to raise money to help pay for ongoing medical expenses for Chase as he continues to receive regular medical follow-ups and care regarding his cancer. Rather than raising money for other great charities that fund pediatric cancer research, I chose to raise money directly for Chase. Running for Chase and his family made the experience much more significant than just qualifying for a race.

Please read more about Chase’s story through the “e-family website” link here.

I know you will be blessed by reading more about this special young man.

– John Herbert
Physical Therapist at PT Solutions of Paulson Willowbrook, Illinois

About the PT
John Herbert, PT, received his Bachelor of Science degree in Physical Therapy from Ball State University and Master of Health Sciences in Physical Therapy from the University of Indianapolis. John also earned an additional Master’s degree from Ball State University in Exercise Physiology. He is a certified strength and conditioning specialist and a certified personal trainer. He has 31 years of clinical experience and specializes in orthopedic injuries.