Keith W.V. Johnson, MD, orthopedic surgeon and sports medicine specialist at Sterling Ridge Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine completed the Ironman Texas triathlon on May 18th in his hometown of The Woodlands. He finished in 12 hours, 6 minutes and 26 seconds. This is a great time for any competitor. However the excessively hot and humid day made this an even greater accomplishment. Ironman competition organizers ranked Ironman Texas as one of the top 10 toughest Ironman events of the year due to the weather conditions.

Finishers of this tough triathlon course earn the title "Ironman" after completing each of the three extensive legs in less than 18 hours:

  • 2.4 miles of open water swimming
  • 112 miles of biking
  • 26.2 miles of running (a full marathon)

Dr. Johnson's new Ironman status further proves that he fully understands what it takes to properly manage a multisport athlete's needs.

"My patients who are multisport athletes need a physician who has more than medical knowledge. They need a physician who understands their sports and their goals. As an Ironman triathlete, I understand what the athlete is experiencing and more importantly I understand their desire to return to training and competition as quickly, but as safely, as possible. I am not the doctor who says, 'don't do that'. I'm the doctor who says, 'how can we treat you so that you can recover and get back to what you love?'"

Dr. Johnson and Dr. William Hayes (in the photo at the right with their wives), partners at Sterling Ridge Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine and orthopedic sports specialists, consider surgery to be the last option for an athlete whenever possible. "We promote conservative care with formal physical therapy, massage, water training and bracing until the athlete has fully recovered to return to competition. If these proven techniques aren't effective and the athlete hasn't recovered, we would consider the least invasive surgery possible."

Advances in orthopedics have made it possible for surgery to be less invasive which results in quicker recovery times and less pain in the process. This is great news for athletes as well as anyone else who is experiencing joint or spinal conditions.

Dr. Johnson looks forward to new athletic competitions and goals including future triathlons.