Episode 160 | Three Whole Years + Three Lessons Learned

Show Notes:

In this episode, we celebrate 3 years of the ACL Athlete podcast. We talk about the journey over the past 3 years and what we’ve accomplished together as a community. The incredible messages, the reach, and 3 lessons I’ve taken away from this experience.

What is up guys and welcome back to another episode on the ACL Athlete Podcast. Today is episode 160: Three whole years plus three lessons learned. I’m sure you could probably gather from the title here three whole years. Yup, the podcast has existed for three whole years. Every single week for three years straight, we have been recording, releasing a podcast episode for you, the listeners, ACLers, clinicians, coaches supporting roles, anyone who is involved in this process. We are here for you recording every single week, making sure we have not missed a single Thursday since we’ve started, which is just crazy to think. And I actually have missed this past year’s anniversary by a couple of weeks. We technically started on February 3rd.

If you’re listening to this, it’s definitely after that time. This is something that I want to make sure I touch on and highlight because it is a very big deal. It’s one of those things where I tell my athletes to celebrate the small wins or here I am celebrating my small win. This is the big thing about the podcast three years, which is incredible. Today, what we’re going to do is walk through a little review down memory lane of the podcast for the past three years, this past year and three lessons that I also want to share with you guys that I’ve just learned. I’m sure there are plenty more that I could share, but I’m going to keep it to three. Just because I think that this is a good time to share those lessons as I’ve gone through this process and doing a podcast now for three plus years and owning a business for longer than that. This has been such a rewarding process so I just want to highlight that today. 

Let’s take a small little trip down memory lane with me. First episode was released in early February, 2021. It took like literally a thousand tries to get it right. I was so freaking nervous. I wasn’t even being screen recorded or anything, but it’s just one of those things where it’s brand new. You’re trying to perfect it and especially my personality, trying to get it right. I had no idea what I was doing and I’m still not a hundred percent sure. I’m still doing this thing and people somehow continue to keep listening. And so that’s why I continue to show up for you guys and these messages and all the things with this podcast, which has been such a blessing after doing this for three years. But as we did this first episode, I wasn’t sure who would listen to it. What would happen. And if anything, it was just an opportunity for me to take information that I’ve learned and put it into a concise format and be able to formulate that and communicate that so that was part of the goal. But then also sharing some of that hoping maybe some people would listen. And when I first got that first 100 download, the platform that I use notified me and was like, there’s been a hundred downloads. And of course, I went to my wife and I was like, did you download this 100 times? And she was like, no, seriously. 

Anyways, finally, I ended up getting a message from someone about the podcast via social media, which was just so wild. I was like, wow, actually someone is listening to this and then it started to just kind of snowball. And then I would get multiple message and emails each week. From people saying how much this podcast has helped them. I literally to this day, save every single one of those messages I get, every single one. And so what I want to do is share a few from the past year that I’ve gotten from ACLers and people who are going through this process through the ins and outs of it, listening to the podcast and then they sent me these messages. I want to share and read a few of these for you.

This message comes from Dana and it says:

Hi, Dr. Patel

Before I ask you my question, I just want to say thank you for sharing all of your knowledge. I’m a mom of three and recently tore my ACL lateral meniscus and medial meniscus for the first time. I came across your page and podcasts and has helped me so much jumpstart my recovery and mindset, which can be a deep black hole. You’re an asset to my recovery team and don’t even know it because I use your page as guidance and a fact checker. As a nurse, I know every case is different and to listen to my providers. But having another opinion, reiterate information is reassuring. I’m grateful for you. And just want to let you know, thank you so much for all of your help. 


That’s awesome. It’s just really cool to hear someone who’s in the medical field. She’s a mom of three, she had a pretty complex injury and she’s getting good guidance. But she’s also wanting to make sure that she can have some other input and educate herself and also making sure from the mental side of things that she is able to have some assurance to what it is that she is doing and this whole process. So that is a really awesome message to get from an ACLer.

Here’s another message from Kiarra. 

Hi. I just want to let you know that your ACL Athlete Podcast has helped me a lot. I’ve just got ACL surgery for the second time last month and I’m struggling with mental health a lot. I tore my ACL meniscus for the first time last year, playing volleyball. And as soon as I came back, I’ve torn it again in my second training. The mental side is very difficult, even more if it’s your second time, because you can’t help but ask yourself why it’s happening to you. And you can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel because you’re scared as hell of getting injured again. You can’t understand what all the effort you are doing is for. Your podcast is a safe place for me. I feel like I’m not alone and I can cry hearing someone finally understand me. Just wanted to say thank you. Your work means a lot to me. Wow, it’s really cool. I’m going to send a whole bag of waterworks here. I’m going to go into another one here.

This one’s from Gin. I’m eight weeks post-op for ACL reconstruction. I have give physical and financial resources for recovery, but I have very little emotional support from people. Immediately following the surgery, I went into a suicidal depression. After I started listening to your podcast, it helped me feel like I’m not alone and I’m on the right track. I’m beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel. 

Thank you so, so much.

Who really, really pull on the heartstrings here already got one last one for you guys. 

Hey Ravi. I had my ACL injury in February of last year and my surgery in December. Throughout this process, my only guidance and main source of support was your podcast. I’m sending you this message of gratitude for what you do. Your podcast has helped me both mentally and physically to extent that you can’t even imagine. I keep doing what you’re doing, because I believe you are making a great difference for all ACL athletes out there. 

Have an amazing day, an even better life. 

Appreciate you, Martinez. 

Well, these are just awesome messages and ones that I’ve received over the past year on top of countless and countless ones that I’ve received. And these are things that I want to do a better job of sharing with you guys, but these are the things that isn’t just for um, you know, patting the podcast on the back or patting me on the back. 

This is to share really what is happening in this space and what people are experiencing and the impact that you as the listener actually has on this podcast. Because as you guys listen, it makes me want to do even better job to deliver as much as I can for you from an education standpoint, empowering standpoint for all the things in ACL rehab, to make sure you all are equipped as possible to take on what you need to. 

As you listen, as you send messages, this is the thing that continues to add fuel and continues to make me not want to stop. I show up every single week, every single day, wanting to do this. So thank you all so, so much for the messages and the support. It’s incredible to hear these and to be able to just save these and to be able to read these and to be able to know when I go to record these podcasts that people are listening. And that is making a difference. So thank you all so much for these past three years and for all of the support. And we’re just getting started, which is awesome.

Before we take off here, there are a couple other things I want to talk about. One is I want to talk about some of the stats of what we’ve accomplished together with your support. And then I want to talk about the three lessons that I’ve learned in this process over these past few years, and just sharing that with you. So let’s see what we’ve accomplished. This is episode 160 and so we’ve been at it for 160 weeks straight. We have had 160 episodes, 157,000 plus downloads. And here’s what’s super freaking cool. 137 different countries. This podcast has been downloaded in 6,830 different cities. That’s so many different places. There’s so many countries that I’ve never heard of cities. And it’s just awesome that this is not just like the U S it’s not even just, you know, main uh, first-world areas it’s like literally, and just all over the world. Third world countries that have listened to this podcast, looking for support, looking for guidance. That’s pretty freaking dope guys. So most importantly, here are the messages knowing we’re making a dent in people’s lives and helping them. Feel empowered, feel informed in the process, which is exactly why this podcast exists. 

Now, before we sign off, I want to talk about the three lessons that I’ve learned over the past three years that I want to share with you guys.

 And trust me, there were so many of these that I had to literally reduce it down to three and pick three from this entire list, because there’s just so much. That truly have learned from all this. And to try and reduce it down to three lessons. Um, is really difficult, but I do want to keep it short. I want to pick three, to stay on theme with everything. So, this is what we’re going to do. 

Number one is stepping into fear. So there are a lot of things that scare us as humans and it will lead to inaction. And that is something that. I’ve always had to dance with throughout my life. And I know all of us feel this in different ways, but for me, it’s always making sure to push myself into these areas of discomfort with imposter syndrome and to take chances. 

And that’s the thing that I’ve learned from my parents. They, you know, immigrated super young for opportunities for me and my brother and for the family. And I would be remiss if I didn’t take advantage of that. So this is one of the things that I constantly have had to push myself with starting a company right before the pandemic started by growing a team by stepping into this space where it wasn’t really common to do remote. ACL work to specialize in a niche just like this. 

And here we are. And now we’re talking about a podcast specifically for this injury. So being able to step into that fear, even though everything is telling you, don’t do it. It’s safer to just go find a job and just do that thing, check in, check out. But that’s not what we’re here for, and that’s not what the purpose is here for. 

And so that’s the goal is to just take those chances step into the fear, welcome the imposter syndrome and make sure that you embrace the discomfort. So that’s probably a bunch of different lessons all in one, but I’m going to bucket that as number one.

 Number two consistency always wins. The thing that is so interesting is that we have this all or nothing mentality, and I can be guilty of it too, where I’m like, all right. You know, I kinda threw that to the road. Like let’s say uh, whether it’s diet or movement, whatever it is. Right. And it’s easy to get into this mindset. 

Well, if I’m not going to be healthy today, I might as well throw it all out. But you can kind of break things up and you can actually do this in quarters or making sure that you just don’t miss twice. There are so many different ways to tackle this. The one thing that I’ve learned is consistency always wins showing up every single week with this podcast. 

If I were to just like stopped after three episodes, it would have never done anything. People would have just been like, okay, cool. You started it. And then if I was just waiting for that small moment, when of those three episodes and not. Looking for this big growth, then that would have been a big problem, because that is something that would have been a roadblock and being consistent with this podcast is the thing that has really allowed it to grow and impact more people and spread and be in 137 countries and have over 150,000 downloads. Which is really, really cool and all that comes back to being consistent. 

And that’s something that we know in our lives, if we could just chip away at being consistent day after day, week after week, month after month, we will move towards the things that we want. The things that we desire, our goals, our dreams, and this is such an example of that. I’ve learned that from, especially doing this podcast, that consistency showing up always wins.

And then number three is be authentic. So authentic was actually my word for 2023, because I started to realize that being in such a social media space with doing content and, you know, there being such a big component of what we do at the ACL athlete, being remote and virtual, that this is something that can kind of play with you, right? 

You’re using social media to help with marketing and to engage with folks and to. Spread the word, and so the thing that is interesting with social media, which I’m sure many people can relate is that authenticity can be lost. You see a lot of other people, it’s easy to copy people to start losing yourself, to try and replicate someone else or you’d like the other person. 

And so you want to kind of be a little bit more like them. And the thing is, is that we always want to come back to our authentic self because that’s where people are going to be able to see through anything that’s not authentic and it’s going to be you. And that’s what people are showing up for. They don’t want to hear someone else. 

They’d go listen to that other person, if they do want to see that person. So showing up as your authentic self. Very genuine, very uncut. Real being honest. And being able to share the ups and the downs, which I try to do with you guys, because it is not all sunshine and rainbows. And so that’s one of the things that I’ve learned is to be authentic, especially in a world where we’re slowly losing authenticity because of social media. Because it’s easy for people to copy things. 

The number of times I’ve seen content copied that we have created that I’ve created is crazy. And instead of going and pointing fingers, I’m like, all right, cool. I’m just going to continue to be my authentic self show up. And show up for the people who are listening to this podcast who are wanting to lean in and be a part of this community. 

That’s the goal. So being authentic is one of the real things that I’ve learned as a part of these three lessons from the past three years.

Now while I could go on a long, long list of so many more. Those are the three that I wanted to share with you guys is to step into the fear. Take those chances, embrace the discomfort be able to embrace the imposter syndrome, knowing that’s healthy, if it’s present. If it’s not, you’re almost too comfortable. 

So that’s all part of lesson one. Number two is consistency always wins. Number three is be authentic. And this is something that through this podcast, taking that chance, being consistent every single week, and honestly showing up as my authentic self. I feel like has played so much into these past three years. Of being a podcast host to being able to share stories, share education, share exactly what it is that we’re here for. 

So much to all of you, our goal is to bring you information perspectives, that education, evidence science, just literally pure value to help you or people, you know, who needs to help navigate this ACL process from one ACL athlete to another. So we together can revolutionize this space. The goal is to redefine ACL rehab, this healthcare process elevate the standard of care and most importantly, so you can get good care. And so you can be confident and in control of your ACL rehab process. 

Here is to year three. As a thank you. I want to do a giveaway. Um, so the way that this is going to work, you can get a sale athlete. T-shirts a Merck, we’ve got some engraved water bottles. Send me a message. Email of how this podcast has helped you. This can be via Instagram, email, Carrie pigeon. 

I don’t care. Just want to hear from you guys. Info we’ll be in the show notes. I do also want to ask you for one small favor. As we hit three years, the way that we spread the message across is when people share this. When they give us reviews, it helps to gain more traction, to be able to reach more and more ACL sellers and people who are looking for evidence-based information, guidance. 

And that’s what we are here for. If I can ask you for one specific thing to give us a five star review, whether you’re on Spotify, whether you are on Apple podcasts. It’s an easy couple minutes type thing. Send us a screenshot of that along with your message or your email. And we will pick one, maybe two, maybe even three people to send a shirt. And some cool merged to the deadline will be next Thursday on February 29th. If you listen to this outside of that window, please still leave us some love. 

Because at the end of the day, we want to reach as many people as we can. And when we spread the word, we can help other ACLers and you’re doing your part by doing that and helping us spread the word and being a part of this amazing ACL athlete community. So thank you all so much for three years and here’s to just getting started and for what’s to come. 

Thank you all so much for listening. To the ACL athlete podcast. Seriously, you’re the MVP. This is your host, Ravi Patel, signing off.

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