Final Surge Podcast Episode 80: Dr. Josh Emdur

In Episode 80 of the Final Surge Podcast we talk with runner and medical professional Dr. Josh Emdur. Josh works for a new online primary care physician service called SteadyMD which is specializing in medical care for athletes. Josh’s specialty is working with runners and we discuss how this new way of healthcare is changing the way runners receive medical treatment.

Welcome to Episode 80 of the Final Surge Podcast where we welcome medical doctor Josh Emdur to the show. Josh has an interesting practice, he works for SteadyMD which changes the way the people interact with their primary care physician. Imagine, instead of calling your primary care doctor for an appointment you texted them and shortly thereafter you were talking to your doctor via a video chat. Dr Emdur's practice does just that and he specializes in working with runners. You can find him at

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Josh is doing some interesting things around medicine for runners.

Can you tell us how you got started as a runner?

  • Played soccer, lacrosse was always a better runner than a player
  • As a physician and parent in Boulder turned to running
  • Ran Rock 'n Roll marathon in San Diego in 2011 and set sights on Boston
  • Wasn't until he hired a coach that he had his big breakthrough

What was it working with a coach that really changed things?

  • Had qualified for Boston, but never fast enough to get accepted
  • Didn't understand what it meant to run easy and the 80/20 rule
You are online at can you tell us what this site is about?
  • Been a family doctor for the last decade
  • Concierge medical service for runners

How does that work, how do you treat patients virtually?

  • Medical school taught 80% of diagnosis is in history
  • This allows you to take the time to get to know them and their history and goals
  • Subscription service outside of health insurance
  • Build a 1-on-1 relationship with the client
  • Constant communications with patients

I've seen on your social media that Neely Spence Gracey uses you, being in Boulder are you working with a certain level of runners or anyone?

  • Athlete doctor
  • Athlete care network
  • A new way to handle primary care with someone who understands runners
  • Works with some coaches and athletes as part of their team
  • Work with any athlete trying to help them get to their goal

You have mentioned you are more like a primary care doctor for athletes. Why do I need a primary care physician when it seems specialist is more of the trend these days?

  • Primary care doctors look at the big picture

Can you practice in any state?

  • Have to be licensed in every state
  • Currently licensed in 26 states

You are obviously using technology to make this work, what do you with the future of healthcare technology such as all the data that Apple Health is grabbing, Do you or can you use and monitor that?

  • The current system is not working
  • High deductible systems are not working, discourage care
  • Here they have access to a Doctor
  • Fan of GoodRx

It seems that technology is lowering the costs for just about everything in our lives these days, but the one place it is not lowering is our healthcare costs. Healthcare costs total about 18% of our GDP last I saw, without getting into the politics of health care and ObamaCare, do you see subscription services like this as a future way to lower costs?

  • It doesn't cost a lot of money to take good care of people
  • 5 minutes with primary care physician does not move the needle
  • It takes time with patients to dig deeper

If someone is already paying obscene amounts for health insurance why would they spend the $79/month on this too?

  • Runners pay a lot for health insurance and don't even use it because not happy with the experience
  • Get on a higher deductible plan and use this to help with basic health goals
  • People are not used to paying to go see the Doctor, takes time to get used to, but end of day paying for expertise

I don't go to the doctors often, I don't think I have been to a Dr. in at least 7-8 years. Last time I was there I had an appointment and all I remember is it took almost an hour longer before I was able to see the doctor. How would an appointment work with you online?

  • Video chat, HIPAA compliant
  • The first appointment is over an hour going over history, that first visit is important to get to know who caring for

If received a prescription from you would insurance cover it?

  • Yes

I wake up this AM and not feeling well and want a consultation, how long would it take to get an appointment?

  • Text through app and will be able to see the same day

What does an appointment with you look like?

  • Check vitals
  • Get a history of what is going on
  • Come up with a treatment plan

What do you think is running related injuries vs general health issues for your clients?

  • 50/50
  • Most start with running injuries but then develops into a general relationship

I wake up on a Tuesday morning with a race this weekend and I am feeling something coming on. You are off on your vacation for a couple weeks rock climbing in South America, what happens if I need service while you are gone?

  • We have other doctors in practice that fill in

You mentioned you can be a team member with an athlete and their coach, can you give me an example of how that would work?

  • Have an athlete who is coached by a McMillian coach using Final Surge which I can see the information and notes of
  • We were able to catch an injury issue early when it was just a stress reaction, not a stress fracture
  • Came up with diagnosis and back at it

The Final Surge... 5 questions in under 1 minute
Favorite endurance/running book? - Born to Run
Current trainers you are wearing? - Newton
Favorite race? - Boston or any race where people are excited to be there
Favorite recovery meal or recovery drink? - Chocolate Milk
Your favorite workout - Anytime pushing myself usually on trails

SteadyMD/Running Website
SteadyMDRunning on Twitter
SteadyMDRunning on Instagram


Team Final Surge

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