Penrose & Associates Physical Therapy in Lacey Is Helping Runner Get back on Track


Maria Sanchez is a long-time runner who enjoys an active lifestyle. But when she was running a 2-mile for her physical fitness test for the U.S. Army in 2023, she says ongoing issues with plantar fasciitis and bone spurs caused the bottom of her foot to feel like it was on fire. She toughed it out and passed the fitness test, then went to the doctor. And that began her journey to foot surgery and later to Penrose & Associates Physical Therapy in Lacey for follow-up treatment.

Sanchez’s goal is to return to the level of running she did at the U.S. Army’s 10-mile run in Washington, D.C. with her son in 2022. Thanks to physical therapy, she is on her way. “They kept encouraging me,” Sanchez says of the Penrose Physical Therapy staff. “They knew what to do.”

Maria Sanchez (pictured) gives kudos to Penrose & Associates Physical Therapy staff for helping her return to her active lifestyle after foot surgery. Photo courtesy: Maria Sanchez

Physical Therapy at Penrose & Associates Relieves Foot Pain and Improves Motion

Sanchez is a retention noncommissioned officer at the Joint Base Lewis-McChord, working with soldiers who are deciding if they want to serve in the reserves after active duty. She has been running since age 15, and would often run 6 to 10 miles at a time as part of her fitness routine. “It takes a toll,” she says. The surgery to address her foot pain included disconnecting the tendons, shaving the bone spurs, and reconnecting the tendons. She was given a physical therapy referral, and began treatment at Penrose & Associates. “When I started at Penrose, I was limping every day,” she says. “Every step was painful. It was bad.”

However, Sanchez has seen a lot of progress in the past 10 months. “I have little to no pain,” she says. “I can go up and down the stairs. That was a non-event six months ago.” Sanchez adds that she can also go on the treadmill for short periods of time, which was not something she could do four months ago.

Penrose & Associates Physical Therapy patient Maria Sanchez (left) ran the U.S. Army’s 10-miler with her son Leroy Beckford Jr. (right) in 2022. She looks forward to running those kinds of distances again. Photo courtesy: Maria Sanchez

Progressive Healing Plan Delivers Foot Recovery at Penrose & Associates Physical Therapy

Sanchez gives kudos to the Penrose Physical Therapy team for their deliberate approach in helping her on her progressive healing journey. “They knew where I was and where I needed to be next,” she says. She says the staff describe what treatment measures they are providing each day and their purpose. “It’s also a beautiful thing to see how they interact with other people there,” she says. “They are good. They are phenomenal.”

Sanchez says she will continue her physical therapy there and intends to get back to running.

Dr. Jennifer Penrose has been a physical therapist since 2001 with a doctorate in physical therapy. She is board certified in orthopedics (OCS) and manual certified (MTC). Penrose Physical Therapy won First place for Best of South Sound in 2023. If you need physical therapy to address pain, or recover from surgery or injuries, visit the Penrose & Associates Physical Therapy website for information and details.

Penrose & Associates Physical Therapy
1445 Galaxy Dr. NE Suite 301, Lacey


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