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The Weightless Way to IMAZ

Robin on the bike.

Robin on the bike.

Robin Littrell

Number of Ironmans completed:
2, IMAZ 2012 & IMAZ 2014.

What was your reason for IMAZ 2014?
IMAZ 2014 Training was a little different from my first experience, but I was very committed to make it to the race. You see I was racing with my daughter Briana.  How many mothers out there can say,“I did an Ironman with my daughter”! Bragging rights forever!!!

How did your training go?

My training started at a nice and steady pace. I didn’t have any real issues, but started to feel a little bit of pressure in my right foot.   My coach advised me to see my doctor ASAP. I did, long story short is I was diagnosed with a stress fracture. I saw a podiatrist was told to tape my foot and run.

Briana at the swim start.

Briana at the swim start.

Did you do anything outside of what the Podiatrist suggested?

I was looking into other ways to train. I have been to Rausch for various reasons and knew about the Anti-gravity treadmill. I started to use the Altra-G Treadmill to keep my endurance and mileage up. It was a great way to get my training in without further injuring my foot. I also had weekly physical therapy sessions with Dustin, the combination was just perfect.

And how did you feel come race day?

When race day came I was so thrilled that once again I was at the starting line ready to go!!

Arizona Ironman 2014 was very challenging to say the least! But I finished☺I am again thrilled to say I am an ironman!

This time around it took the whole village to get me there, without the encouragement from my wonderful coach Martha,  Rausch PT and my husband “Bob” my journey would have  a very different ending.

By |December 18th, 2014|Profiles|Comments Off

Winning the Kona Lottery

blogpic2How long has competing at Kona been a dream of yours for?

Competing at the Ironman World Championship in Kona has been a dream I pursued for more years than I can count.  I started competing in triathlons in 1994 a couple years after graduating from college where I had cycled competitively for five years. Early on, I saw the Ironman World Championship on TV and was captivated by the goal and dream of someday finishing this race.

How did you finally gain a position at Kona?

Absent the speed to qualify with an age group win at a qualifying race, my only option to race in Kona has been a lottery spot. I have entered the lottery every consecutive year for longer than I can remember without luck.  This year’s lottery winners were announced on April 15th at 9:00AM PST.  With no email from the WTC by 9:03AM, I resigned myself to another year without an entry. As I glanced over the list of lottery winners on the Ironman website to see if recognized any names, I suddenly encountered my name on the list. What?! I had a sense of disbelief since I hadn’t received an email. Was I reading this right or were my eyes deceiving me? I reached for my phone and checked my email again. The email confirming my lottery spot had arrived at 9:24AM.  I was stunned and elated. I finally had my chance to make this dream a reality.

Once in, where did you training take you?

In the months leading up to the race, my training progressed well.  In training for other IM distance races previously, I knew to temper my enthusiasm in the early months, stay healthy, keep it interesting and have fun.  Over the summer, I raced at Escape from Alcatraz, Vineman 70.3, Coveathlon and Big Kahuna Aquabike. Plans for racing IMLT 70.3 as a final big training day fell through with the race cancellation, but the long rides and runs were in the bank so I took this in stride.  I was fortunate to stay healthy as my training volume increased. A bit of discomfort in my heel area was quickly addressed with a few visits to Jessica Snyder at Rausch Physical Therapy. I was able to keep moving forward in my training without any downtime which was important both physically and mentally.

blogpicprofileWhat were a few highlights of race week in Kona?

We arrived in Kona on Tuesday before race day. Leading up to race day, I enjoyed practice swims in the ocean, the coffee boat and the Underpants Run along with some relaxation time and a drive to Hawi to check out the bike course. Another highlight was a chance encounter along Alii Drive with Chrissie Wellington who wished me a good race as I rode my bike to check-in on Friday.

The big day has arrived, how did it go?

A big part of competing in an Ironman is taking the conditions of the day and making the best of the circumstances. When the cannon went off on race morning, my first goal was to finish and enjoy the experience. And if I’m honest, I had a finish time in mind I thought I could achieve if circumstances allowed.

The swim felt good and I was out of the water in 1:24. A little slower than I expected, but no reason to fall apart over 9-10 minutes.  The first 30 miles of the bike were comfortable and on target. Out on the Queen K, conditions abruptly changed at Mile 30 with an incredible headwind that left me riding 7.7mph on flat terrain. I watched my average speed plummet and later learned my support crew thought I’d crashed or flatted with the sharp decrease in speed. By Mile 40, I was reassessing my time goals. As the strong winds continued to gut both my speed and ability stay aero, I knew my time goal was slipping away. The ride on to Hawi was hard. And slow. And uphill. And windy. Probably the toughest riding conditions I’ve experienced in 27 years as a cyclist.  I was grateful for the turnaround in Hawi and anticipated tailwinds, but with gusting crosswinds, even the downhill was slow in order to maintain bike control.  112 miles later, I came off the bike absolutely fried. My legs rebelled at my attempt to run in to T2 and I slowed to a brisk walk.  Coming out of T2, I again tried to run. I was able to jog easily and gradually loosened up to maintain a decent pace through the first 16 miles.  The pace slowed a bit until Mile 25 but I kept a moderate jog while walking the aid stations. As I came back into town, my pace picked up heading downhill to Alii Drive. Making the final turn on Alii Drive was magical. My legs no longer hurt.  My pace accelerated all the way across the finish line. I finished in 14:42.

It’s been a few weeks since Kona, have you been able to reflect much?

Recently a friend asked me if I ever asked myself “Why am I doing this?” when I was out on the course that day. My answer came easily, “no”.  On race day, I was able to embrace every minute of the day, from the pre-race nerves to a beautiful swim, the incredibly challenging winds on bike course and the run along Alii Drive at sunset. And the finish….An incredible feeling of accomplishment beyond words.  I feel privileged to have had to the opportunity to race in Kona along with incredible support from a wonderful group of friends and husband who supported me through my training and traveled to Kona to cheer me on.


By |November 19th, 2014|Profiles|Comments Off

Billy Lister

Billy Lister | Rausch PT & Sports PerformanceKeeping the Challenged Athlete spirit alive. This month we are highlighting a very talented and inspiring individual, Billy Lister. He has seen life on both sides of the spectrum, spending half his life as an active athletic child and adolescent to having his world drastically changed and rediscovering his new potential and strength. Having earned a spot on the USA Paracycling team, Billy left his east coast home to make sunny southern california his new training grounds.

What kind of kid were you?

I was an athlete growing up, playing anything that would get me on a field. Sport was a lifestyle, and I was good at it.

Billy Lister blog 1
At 15 your life took a bit of a turn….?

It was the spring during my freshman year of High School, of which I was newly entered into and was just getting to know my classmates; Springtime on Long Island, NY meant Lacrosse season.

A few weeks into the season, I started getting really bad headaches after practice. These were not garden variety headaches, and often forced me to go straight to bed once I got home. My parents took me in to see my doctor; but after multiple routine tests, nothing out of the ordinary showed up. Until my doctor decided to get an MRI scan of my sinuses, which he thought might be a major infection causing the headaches. Now, when you get a standard sinus MRI scan, it actually partially shows the lower hemisphere of your brain stem; and with nothing short of pure genuine luck on the uppermost corner of the scan is where they found the abnormality in my brain. To create a perspective of analogy, it’d be like falling into a haystack and finding a needle with Babe Ruth’s rookie baseball card attached to it.

What was the abnormality?Billy Lister blog 2

AVM is short for Arteriovenous Malformation, which often refers to a blood vessel in your brain that shouldn’t technically be there. It is something congenital (though not genetic), but serves no cerebral function. The danger it poses however, is very real; as at any time without warning it can rupture and can cause a brain hemorrhage. Many people can live a full and healthy life with an AVM and will never know the threat they face, while the fate of other less fortunate is marred in tragedy.

It only took a few days before I was sitting in front of the World’s leading Neurosurgeon at Beth Israel Hospital in New York City being told about my diagnosis. The most beyond imagination aspect of these chain of events was the headaches I was getting were completely unrelated to my diagnosis. It turned out I was just a stressed out High School kid.. go figure

To correct the malformation, I underwent invasive brain surgery at the age of 16.  The surgery was a success in treating the AVM; however as a complication I started experiencing some swelling in my brain several months post op. The swelling led to some loss of function on my left side.  I immediately underwent intensive physical rehab and was making strong gains, but then in June of 1999 at the age of 17 I suffered a stroke.  My stroke was a very atypical event, where it actually was a slow and regressive process.  Each day I woke up and couldn’t do something I could the day before; type on a keyboard, tie my shoes, brush my teeth, and eventually the ability to run. After about 4 weeks the episode had finally ceased leaving me in the full left side hemi paresis state I’m in today.

I’d been an athlete my whole life, playing everything I could find the time for. So when sports were slowly taken away from me, it was a tremendous burden to cope with.  For many years I was coasting through life, going through the motions as a kid learning how to survive with a disability. And in that is a monumental point; I was only surviving life, I wasn’t living it.

What was the turning point that made you go from “just surviving life, to living it”?

There are certain junctures in life that shape the individual and person you become, and the path that you journey on. My stroke was obviously the first such moment, altering my future and the challenges I would face for the rest of my life. Other moments point you in a direction to where you belong in this world, and can be an awakening to what is possible. That second such instance was in August of 2011 when I attended a Paratriathlon camp for the Challenged Athletes Foundation, and got on a bike for the first time since I was 17 years old.

Since getting involved with CAF,  where has life on two wheels taken you?

In the past 3 years since learning to ride a bicycle, I had competed in over 20 triathlons; reaching the podium in several of the National Paratriathlon races, and ultimately winning the points championship in the 2012 USA Paratriathlon series.

After relocating to Southern California, it didn’t take long to realize that my true athletic passion lied in the form of 2 wheels and a saddle. Only a few months after my relocation, in November 2013 I fully dedicated my training to the realm of Paracycling; and in less than 10 months managed to accumulate an abundance of highlights and growth trajectory potential.

In my very first cycling event, I entered into the US Indoor Track Paracycling National Championships at the LA Velodrome at the end of November 2013. Having only ridden a track bike twice in my life the week prior leading up, I came away with the victory in both of the events I entered.  By the end of the weekend I had become a two time National Champion in the Men’s C2 Division, 3 Kilometer Individual Pursuit as well the 1 Kilometer Time Trial.

Once my target became racing on the Road, huge results quickly came into line. Based on my 1st place performance at the selection race in conjunction with US Pro Championships, I was named to the Team USA roster for the UCI Paracycling World Cup in Segovia, Spain.

Additionally  given my times and ranking held throughout the US Paracycling National Championships weekend, am proud to announce I was also chosen to the World Championships team to represent Team USA on our home soil, a once in a lifetime opportunity. My ascension onto Team USA Paralympic Cycling has been explosive, but my growth potential is seen as an even greater advantage. With the ultimate goal to compete for the United States of America at the 2016 Paralympic games in Rio de Janeiro.

By |October 16th, 2014|Profiles|14 Comments

Meet Jack

Rausch Physical Therapy and Sports PerformanceOur newest addition to Rausch Physical Therapy and Sports Performance, Jack McPheron, Director of the Performance Lab located inside our office. He studied Mechanical Engineering at Penn State, his brain is hardwired to understand how things work, including the human body.

We first met Jack when he was a rep for Newton Running Shoes, a brand we love. As we grew and he grew, so did our professional relationship and the need for a Human performance extraordinaire. Naturally, we wanted him. To validate he’s worth having,  Jack threw together a few words of his own.

(In the words of Jack)

Q. How did you get into endurance sports/distance running? (Ultra’s, Ironman)

  1. I first entered endurance sport world after being cut from baseball team in 7th grade and mom suggested going out for the XC team. Did it first as a social activity, but it has since progressed into pushing personal limits and seeing how far I can go.

Q. Favorite training tricks/ fuel/ trail – what do you love about running & endurance sports?

  1. Training Tricks – Training at the correct intensities and engaging the mind into pushing harder.

Fuel – Boiled potatoes in coarse salt, ProBar, Nuun, BoBo’s Oat Bars.

Trail – Forest Park in Portland, OR

Q. What credentials/ trainings/podiums/placings do you have?

  1. I got my Bachelor’s in Mechanical Engineer and have studied Biomechanics of Running for 6 years. Needless to say, I love understanding how items/humans work. I am also a certified Level 3 Natural Run Coach. As for my athletic abilities, it began at a young age and has since evolved from baseball to endurance sports.  I hold these placings – 2nd in age at Steamtown, 19th overall. Top 3% or better in all marathons raced. 4 Ironman finishes.


  • 2nd in Age Group, 21st Overall – Steamtown Marathon 2010
  • 3rd Overall – Palos Verdes Half Marathon 2010
  • Top 2% – Boston Marathon 2011
  • Top 3% – NYC Marathon 2011
  • 19th Overall – Missoula Half Marathon 2012
  • 23rd Overall – Missoula Half Marathon 2011
  • Ironman St. George 2012, Coeur d’Alene 2013, Tahoe 2013, Canada 2014

Q. When not training… what do you do?( Besides plan your next run, ha ha)

A.  Anything that is an adrenaline rush or new adventure. Paddle boarding, surfing, climbing, hiking, camping, traveling, visiting family, writing.

I am seeking to share my passion with athletes around the world and help others achieve their goals and dreams. By doing so, I am rewarded with the pure joy I hope to have each and every day of my life.

If you have questions about our Performance Lab services, shoot Jack an email

By |September 17th, 2014|Profiles|6 Comments

Cavemen… They do exist.

Conrad StoltzLucky us! We had the chance to treat the real Caveman, Conrad Stoltz a true legend in the world of off-road Triathlon. He’s still leading the pack and racing Pro at 40! Conrad is an all-round nice guy who gave us a glimpse into his background, race highlights, memorable moments and much more…

Conrad Stoltz “Caveman”

Where you are from?
Stellenbosch South Africa

Years in Sport:
Started 1988 age 14. Turned Pro after High School

Why did you get into this sport?
Turns out it’s more fun and adventurous than running round and round a 400m track

Favorite things outside of sport
Going cool places with with Princes Hotstuff (aka my wife, Liezel) coffee & cake, adventure, eating, fly fishing, dirt bikes & outdoors

Major Accomplishments:

  • 4x XTERRA World Champion
  • 3x ITU Cross Tri World Champion
  • 10x XTERRA USA Series Champion
  • 2x Olympian
  • 5x African triathlon Champion
  • 5x South African triathlon Champion
  • Winner Mrs Ts Chicago

The perfect ride and or race:
XTERRA Italy is pretty amazing:

What you love about the sport:
XTERRA is a mix adrenaline with your lactic acid. To do well you need to be technically skilled, brave and robust- on top of being super fit and well trained. There’s tire and shoe choices to be made – according to the terrain. And its constantly changing according to the weather or the location:
You could be speeding through wooded single track with rocks, roots, mud- typically East Coast or Europe. Or you could be racing on a volcano in Hawaii, or running on a sandy beach in Brazil, riding the Flume trail overlooking Lake Tahoe, or bombing down crowd lined stairs and narrow alleys of a medieval Italian mountain village.
The destinations are phenomenal. Each with its own challenges and culture- this is what keeps it fresh and fun- and is the reason I’m still racing Pro at 40.

Race Aspirations or Inspiration:
I like the adventure, the adrenaline, the exotic locations, stunning natural beauty and of course the people are great- friendly and laid back. I also like going fast!

Favorite gear:
Hoka Mafate trail shoes. Specialized Sworks Stumpjumper trail bike. Oakley Radar XL. Clif Bar’s BuilderBar Cookies and Cream

Most memorable race moment:
Winning my 4th XTERRA Worlds title in 2010. I raced for my dad – who was fighting cancer. It was the 1st World title won on a 29er and I just had a perfect day:

Twitter: @ConradStoltz

Lyndsay DeFilippo – Our Jersey Shores Physical Therapist

Profile ArticleName: Lyndsay DeFilippo

From: I’m a Cali transplant by way of New York City and could not be happier to have made the trek to the sunny shores of Orange County!

Education: I began my education at Syracuse University where I majored in Physical Anthropology with minors in Biology and Spanish, later moving to NYC where I completed my Doctorate of Physical Therapy coursework at New York University. As a graduate of the class of 2010, I first began my career in the acute care setting working predominantly with patients in the Oncology and Stem Cell transplant units as well as General Medicine floors. I realized quickly that my passion was not in a hospital setting but rather in outpatient Sports and Orthopedics, and to this day have not looked back. 

Profile Blog 2Why did you want be to a Physical Therapist?

As a former athlete myself (soccer and swimming) I have gone through my own plethora of injuries and physical therapy as a result. I will attest to the fact that I was “the worst therapy patient ever” having never done my home exercises and skipping sessions frequently, so really having ended up in a profession where I’m the one prescribing those things is just karma’s way of saying “Well hello there”! That is obviously a joke, as I love what I do and love coming to work each day. Being a therapist allows me to be creative yet also challenges me daily. I look at each injury as a constantly changing puzzle which is only solved when YOU, the patient returns to what you love doing. I like to help with the full recovery process but also like to educate, giving the tools and fundamentals to prevent re-injury and the potential for new injuries. My favorite body parts to work with include shoulder, knee, foot and ankle pathologies both operative and nonoperative. I am a Graston Practitioner and recently became a Certified Kinesiotaping Practitioner.

Profile Blog 3When not fixing head, shoulders, knees & toes, what are you doing?

In my free time you can find me by the beach paddle boarding, swimming, surfing, traveling the world with my backpack, and shamelessly dancing like a banshee at a concert. I am a diehard futbol fan supporting Real Madrid and the Spanish National Team (minus our lackluster World Cup performance…I’m still bitter) and really just enjoy being able to share new experiences as they are presented to me.

Are you ready to FULLY drink the Rausch PT kool-aide?

I am so excited to be a part of this amazing therapy team, and start this new “West Coast” chapter of my life. Stop on by, say hi, we can talk bagels, lunch meat, what REAL pizza is supposed to taste like, and you can try and keep a straight face every time I attempt to say coffee, office, dog, and water.

ABC Pilates Springs into Action

profile blog 2If you’re like most of us, we love to workout in some form. Sometimes it’s taking a class and having that incredible instructor push us just a little bit more than we would on our own. So, what’s stopping you? Class availability? ABC Pilates has been working overtime to get YOU more classes and NEW options. Look at the new Restorative classes for those days when you need a little more TLC or the Power Mat class when you want a little extra burn.

Mondayprofile blog 1

8:30am TRX Jump Pump & Burn: TRX, weighted bars, free weights, BOSU and some serious Pilates of course! Get the most out of your workout from this boot camp style class. Time to mix it up!

Monday & Wednesday

10:30am Pilates Restorative: A reformer class specifically designed to improve balance, flexibility as well as assist in rehabilitation from injury or surgery. Restorative and gentle a great practice for everyday. Wonderful for Pre/Post natal too!

12 Noon Pilates Circuit: Don’t quit your day job!! But make it better with a lunchtime Pilates class. Pilates circuit is a fun program utilizing reformer, tower, EXO chair and jumpboard. Brown bag lunches are boring!  But Pilates is fun. Join us!


6:00pm Mat Flow: All the traditional Pilates matwork as Joe Pilates would have taught it plus the challenging addition of free weights, bands and stability balls. A complete workout to promote strength, core stability and range of motion.

6:00pm Power Mat: Time to challenge your Pilates practice!  Power mat will utilize free weights, weighted bars, bands and variety of amazing props. You will sweat, shake a little and smile a lot.


8:00am Foam Roller Fusion: Runners here is the class for you! Find out the many ways to use the foam roller and increase flexibility, core strength and balance. A great way to recover from a long run, cross train for those future runs and banish overuse injuries!

schedule here


It’s time to Run Right into your race season

It’s time to Run Right into your race seasonWe have the answer. Run Right. Our 1-on-1 session between you and a certified running coach. Did you know the certified running coaches are also Physical Therapists? Two experts in one. Lucky YOU!

During the Run Right session your running mechanics are completely analyzed and videotaped to capture your bodies movement and form to identify any biomechanical issues, technical flaws or muscle imbalances that are causing pain or soreness. 

A personalized plan is created including specific exercises and drills to improve your mechanics. Poor running form often results from tight, weak muscles. By identifying these areas and strengthening you can improve your performance and help to minimize the risk of injury.

Call the clinic today (949) 276-5401 to schedule your session.

Learn how to Run Right and run strong!

Check out the The Whole Body Fix article in Runner’s World. It’s a fantastic article about running right, understanding the purpose of an evaluation session and the importance to prioritize rehab!


By |April 23rd, 2014|Profiles|Comments Off

We just call him Mr. Baseball…

 mrbaseballblogJonathan Meltzer has always had a profound interest in baseball and the physical demands required by the human body to perform the sport well. During his college years he gained experience assessing, taping and rehabilitating collegiate baseball players as a student athletic trainer. In 2008, Jonathan graduated from the University of Redlands with a Bachelor of Arts in Biology and a minor in Physical Education. Following graduation Jonathan really began to find his passion. 

for physical therapy while working as a Physical Therapy Aide. Graduating top of his class from Loma Linda University in 2012 with a Doctorate in Physical Therapy, Jonathan began his career right at Rausch Physical Therapy & Sports Performance.

Jonathan’s goals are to identify limitations with the baseball population and treat his patients with the most recent and innovative techniques in order to prevent injuries and obtain his patients’ individual goals. He is very passionate about the game and is always looking for the newest research and treatments for baseball related injuries. It is his drive for the game and caring for patients that will get players back onto the field faster and healthier. He has the aspirations to get the word out to all youth baseball players in South Orange County that they do not have to play through pain. That proper treatment, rehab and exercises are possible to prolong to baseball lives of all young athletes.  

Have you heard about our “Throw Right” program? Be sure to ask Jonathan how this biomechanical analysis can help you improve your game and reduce risk of injury!

Meet Lawrence! Our Clinical A.R.T. Specialist


Hailing from South Africa Lawrence is a Sports Chiropractor that has been working with Elite athletes for 20 years. His main claim to fame is being married to former Olympian middle distance athlete Gwen and is the proud father of his daughter Faith, aka The Goose.  

Lawrence started out his career by looking after the dominant Mr Price International running team for the Ultra Distance Comrades Marathon. He has helped Durban Surf Life Saving Club to 3 World Championship Titles. 

Lawrence also worked with the Glenwood Falcons Premier club rugby team as the fitness, conditioning coach and therapist and helped them to a Club Championship title.

Lawrence then moved to Port Elizabeth where he spent two years racing and training as a Professional Ironman while working part time. In 2010, Lawrence moved to Cape Town where he worked full time in private practice treating numerous world class and amateur athletes using manual therapy and tissue release to align the body and restore normal function and movement.

In 2013 Lawrence was High Performance Manager for the South African Red Bull team of athletes including world class surfers, trail runners, triathletes and XC mountain bikers. Lawrence is currently working with Santa Cruz Syndicate and Greg Minnaar, the 2012 and 2013 UCI Downhill Mountain Bike World Champion.

Late last year, Lawrence relocated with his wife and daughter to Southern California and joined Rausch PT as our staff Clinical Active Release Technique (ART) provider to help treat and release soft tissue injuries and restrictions and help to restore natural and pain free movement.

By |February 20th, 2014|Profiles|9 Comments