In 1980, my senior year at Cal, my friend Gary Taylor talked me into doing the Ironman Triathlon in Hawaii. After months of training, we went to Honolulu. Two days before the race, we inexplicably started wrestling each other. Gary happened to be 6'2" and 175 pounds and I was 5'6" and 131 pounds(That's no longer my weight). Our "match" lasted about 7 seconds because I felt a sudden knife-like pain in my right upper back when I tried to "supplex" him(a russian wrestling move that a friend had tried to teach me).
I was unable to turn my head to the right nor could I lift my right arm above horizontal. For two days I tried massage, heat, ice, showers and aspirin(Advil had only recently been invented and was only available by prescription).
On race morning, I was able to lift my arm but I still couldn't turn my head. Gary asked me what I was going to do. I told him that I would just see how it felt.
The 2.4 mile swim went fine. But when I got on my bike I found that I couldn't lift my head up with my hands down on the drops. At about 20 miles, after going downhill towards Sandy Beach(the only hill) while sitting straight up I told Gary that I had to stop and stretch it out.
I had discovered that it felt good to put pressure on it with my hand so I thought if I put a LOT of pressure on it, it might feel better.
I found a grassy slope and laid on my back with my legs and hips higher than my head. I rocked back and forth a few times and then felt a "click" in my upper back.
When I stood up I turned my head slowly right and left. Then I looked straight up.
The pain was gone."Huh. That's weird," I thought to myself.
"Let's go!" I shouted at Gary.
We both finished the race and had several other problems but that's not really part of this story.
About a year later, I was playing poker at a friends house. An old friend of my cousins named Mike Wong(who was in his 3rd quarter of chiropractic school) was there. He asked me what I was doing and I told him I was in grad school studying microbiology. He asked me what I thought about becoming a chiropractor.
Now the only time I had even discussed chiropractic was when we drove by a chiropractic office near my high school and I asked "Hey Mom, What's a chiropractor?"
Her response was "Oh, some kind of weird doctor."
At the end of the evening of poker, Mike adjusted me and I immediately thought "That's what I needed!"
I went home and told my parents that I was going to drop out of grad school and become a chiropractor. After not talking to me for about a week, they agreed to support me in my efforts but only if I never changed careers again. And here I am.