Last week, my post was MIA. It was because I was interviewing the man who helped to change my life. I had the opportunity to sit down with Dr. Frank Michalski, who helped me to get to the place I am today. If it weren’t for working with him on my health and fitness, I would probably still be significantly overweight, unhappy with myself, and struggling on keeping my PCOS at bay.
First and foremost, Dr. Frank is a chiropractor, who obtained his Doctorate of Chiropractic from D’Youville College in Buffalo, NY. Shortly after, opened his own practice with one of his life long friends who he had graduated with. Over the years, they have grown to have a successful practice together. On top of that, Dr. Frank works as a health coach to help people lead a healthier life. Using keto as a template and incorporating exercise and supplements, he makes it feel like eating healthy and staying on track isn’t THAT hard. And because of him, my back problems have less flareups, my PCOS is managed prescription free, and I lost a total of 30 pounds, maintaining that weight loss for almost a year now.
I’m telling you, working with Dr. Frank will change your life. It changed mine. This week, I’m going to share part of our interview, where you will learn about how Dr. Frank chose his path, how it got him to where he is today, and the approach he takes with each person as an individual in his practice.
Jeanette: What initially sparked your interest in chiropractic, health, and fitness?
Dr. Frank: All my life, I have always worked in wellness and fitness. My very first job was at Vitamin Shoppe. I took a job there when I was 17 years old, and that introduced me to a group of people who were interested in alternative medicine and taking care of themselves by not using prescription medication, by not relying on modern western medicine. So from working there, I started to realize that there is this culture of people who are eating healthy and taking supplements, and they seem to be avoiding regular doctors appointments. They seem to be active, in the gym, and in really good health. After that, I started doing personal training, and I was doing more of a rehab training. I worked more with people who were injured, and I found a passion for working with that demographic of people. So when I went to college, chiropractic seemed to be the natural path – it was something I could own my own business in, and I wanted something where I would have the ability to do nutrition and muscular skeleton care. Chiropractic offered both of those, without having to rely on a medication to help treat someone, or a physical therapy background.
J: I’ve noticed too you’re different from other chiropractors. You don’t adjust by solely cracking the back, but you take your time, using different tools to help with the healing process.
F: Yes, we use the graston cream, TheraGun, we use heat, spinal decompression, and CBD oils. We use a very rounded approach, because when you treat someone there are usually two to three parts to it. Cold laser therapy, soft tissue work, then we use rock tape (kenisology tape) to repair the injury. I adopted that approach because I don’t like the traditional ‘crack the back’ approach. In my view, that is not too far off from taking a medication. For example, if someone comes in with a very weak back and midsection, I can crack their back all day long, but they’re always going to have to keep coming back. We are not addressing their root problem, which might be a weakness in their core or a weakness in their legs. On top of having a joint that’s not moving when we crack someone’s back. This person might have muscle tension, weak surrounding muscles, inflammation… so when we take an approach where we use really deep tissue massage with an instrument to break up that muscle tissue and scar tissue, then we do the manipulation on the joints. Then we might go over it with some rock tape to help retrain the muscles in the area to function properly. It’s a multi-step approach, because the issues are multi-factorial. Rarely is it just a mobile joint that needs to be cracked. This is how we got involved in nutrition. We take a whole person approach instead of just treating the symptom. Back pain is normally a symptom of something else, versus a diagnosis in itself.
J: When you went to school for chiropractic, did you always know you were going to go the route of working with people individually just on fitness alone?
F: No, I had no idea I was going to wind up doing that. When I went to school for chiropractic, I didn’t know a ton about it. When I graduated, I continued working part time as a personal trainer, then I kind of wound up taking a combination of things and putting them together into what I do now. I actually didn’t like chiropractic a lot when I graduated because a lot of what I was exposed to was just crack your back, and that was it. I really felt that I had a lot more information that was a lot more valuable than just that to an individual. So no, when I graduated I didn’t think I would wind up where I am, but I’m glad I did, because I wouldn’t do it any other way. I want to help a person as a whole, not just one set of problems.
J: When you started working with me, you started me on the ketogenic diet, which I followed through with and continue to eat mostly that way today. Would you recommend that to everyone you work with? How would you go about dealing with someone who might be vegan or vegetarian?
F: I really try to keep it kind of specific. So when someone contacts me about nutrition, I look at their health history first to see if this person is a candidate to work with me. In a lot of cases, some people might be vegan for religious purposes, which is fine, but they probably will not be a candidate to work with me. Not because I disagree with their point of view on something, but I do disagree with some of the nutritional factors that they have chosen to adapt. When it comes to my approach with keto and recommending that for everyone, I don’t, but I would say that is the template that I use for everyone. There might be some variations in it, but it all depends on someone’s blood work. If their cortisol is that this point, if their cholesterol is at that point, maybe they have food allergies to eggs or red meat, then we may have to add in a legume to get a little more protein. But in most cases, we recommend keto because…
Want to know why Dr. Frank recommends keto in most cases? Stay tuned for that answer and more next week! The interview will continue to discuss why a keto template is good for most people, keto and PCOS, exercise, and his best piece of advice for people who want to start on a path toward a healthy life!