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  1. #1
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    Default Exercise After Throwing Back Out????

    Hopefully someone sees this thread. I threw my back out on Sunday for the first time ever...doing nothing. I have been working out a lot (sometimes twice a day), but I hadn't even worked out yet that day!

    I was sitting on the couch and when I got up, my lower back really hurt, but I always have back pain so I didn't think much of it. Then I went to wash the dishes and when I reached for the soap, I couldn't move. It passed and went back to regular back pain, but then it happened again so I began furiously texting my friend asking what to do, and she said there was nothing I could do but lay down and ice my back for the entire day.

    After I laying down, I couldn't move at all. I was home alone, had to pee like a race horse and couldn't get off my bed! It was pretty scary- I almost called 911!

    Anyway, both my friends whose backs go out told me they are usually completely bedridden for 2-3 days so I felt really lucky that after 3-4 hours, I could finally get out of bed (with a lot of pain) and walk around- walking actually felt good.

    By Monday morning, I felt pretty good and since then, I've just had constant but bearable low back pain.

    My question is, when can I work out (hard) again???!!! Does anyone know? Had this happen?

    Although I probably shouldn't have, I went to the gym Monday and walked on the treadmill for 40 minutes- I didn't run at all though. Yesterday, I tried to do a Tae Bo video since they are easier than my typical workout, but after 15 minutes, it didn't seem like a good idea (too high impact) so I walked again.

    It's killing me just walking and not really working out! I do NOT want to get off this workout momentum, but I'm also terrified of throwing my back out again.

    It's the not the pain stopping me from doing high impact exercise because it's completely bearable, I'm just worried about making it worse. Do I have to wait until it doesn't hurt anymore? That seems like it could take forever. I can't find anything online that says wait X amount until working out after throwing your back out.

    I feel like I'm 80!!!

  2. #2
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    I have chronic back issues and am often put on medical leave for at least a week each year for throwing my back out. The advice of my docs has been to rest for at least 10 days. Then there are very specific exercises you can try. I work with PTs so I'm lucky to have that access, but if I were you I wouldn't try any weight lifting or strengthening exercises unless you talk to a PT to ensure your don't aggravate it by accident ( I also wouldn't trust the advise of a trainer at your gym. In my, and my PT coworkers, experience they tend to give bad advise when it comes to injury because it's not their training and they don't fully get the anatomy and physiology) . I do do Pilates and yoga, as tolerated, during my "rest" times though to keep it loose and limber.
    I'm also a work our junkie so I feel your pain, which is why I do the pilates and yoga, at least then I'm doing SOMETHING
    Last edited by VASLP; 06-17-2015 at 07:52 AM.
    Married 10/16/04
    "If our thoughts are worth a penny, what are our dreams worth?"

  3. #3
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    I would definitely recommend either going to a PT or a chiropractor. You don't want to mess around with back injuries.

  4. #4
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    Thanks girls. You're right- I should go to a chiropractor. I've just always been kind of weary of them! My friend recommended hers to me- she goes every week to try and prevent her back from going out. It's also just another "thing" to fit in my schedule that I don't have time for, you know?

    Glad to hear pilates and yoga should be ok. I'll definitely do that until I'm back to full throttle workouts. I refuse to let this get me off track!! And it's so hard because I feel 100% now other than my lower back having a constant dull pain and it being harder to get out of bed/stand up. So you feel like you can do your regular stuff again, but I know that isn't really the case. ARGH!

  5. #5
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    taffers - the chiro can be the right choice for somethings and the wrong choice for others. I fell down a mountain about 10 years ago and thought I destroyed my hamstring. Went to a sports physician who recommended physio and did that for a few weeks. Then the PT recommended sports massage and did that for a few weeks. No improvement. Finally I went to a chiropractor who looked at me and said "your pelvis is out of line", did an adjustment and I was completely cured - immediately. I almost cried with joy.

    But I went to a chiropractor for my shoulder who told me I had a frozen shoulder and started doing treatments. It didn't get any better so I went to an orthopedic surgeon who said I had a labrum tear and needed PT - huge improvement.

    There are some good lower back pain yoga/pilates workouts on youtube - they're specifically designed to be easy on the back yet give a good stretch.

  6. #6
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    Be cautious about chiropractics if you have no prior experience with them. As PineTree said it can be the wrong choice at times. People think it's a one size fits all type of treatment and it very much isn't. I'm assuming when you said that you threw your back out you are meaning of the lumbar spine? If so, that often (not always) indicates weakness of the hamstrings, pelvis, hips and/or back muscles. Especially, since you said you injured it doing nothing (which is always the case with me as well), as opposed to a specific action causing injury. So it's a spine injury caused by weakness. The only way Chiropractics can be fully effective is by combining it with specific strengthening and/or PT. Sure the Chiro can pop your spine back into place, but if you don't strengthen the muscles around it then it's just going to go back into where it was.
    (Sidebar- If you've been hitting the gym hard you may want to take a close look at your form during strengthening exercises. If your form is incorrect you may be causing yourself injury, which could explain why you've never had this problem before)

    If you are truly concerned about this being a prolonged issue I would start with your PCP who may recommend xrays etc to get a complete diagnosis of the spinal issues which could be causing the problem. It's not worth taking short cuts when it comes to your back. As you learned through pain, you use it so much more than you realize and you don't want to mess with that.

    Okay, I'm off my soapbox. My personal history of back problems combined with working in Rehab makes me a bit preachy about this stuff.
    Last edited by VASLP; 06-17-2015 at 12:07 PM.
    Married 10/16/04
    "If our thoughts are worth a penny, what are our dreams worth?"

  7. #7
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    That's the thing VASLP, I've been working out so much- lots of core workout and leg strengthening so I would think that I would be stronger not weaker!! I used to work out even harder and never once had any injury- but back then I only ran and did heavy weight training. Now I'm doing these stupid full body workouts- you know, the whole muscle confusion, bursts of energy, supposedly get a better workout in 30 minutes than my previous 1.5 hours at the gym. HOWEVER, in all honesty, I know I don't suck in my stomach enough to support my lower back because I notice on the exercises where I have to bend down with weights, my back starts to hurt, which it shouldn't with correct form. It's not my natural stance to support my back like that and I'm so tired that I just don't even think about it!

    Quote Originally Posted by Pine Tree View Post
    There are some good lower back pain yoga/pilates workouts on youtube - they're specifically designed to be easy on the back yet give a good stretch.
    Ooh, I will check it out. I've really only been stretching out my hamstrings everyday because I'm too scared to do anything more.

  8. #8
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    Ok so I did this yoga/pilates video for back pain, and I think it really helped! At least it felt good. I started to panic because my lower back started to really hurt again this afternoon (I could move and walk, it was just pain) so I was super worried it would go out again, and I wasn't at home. I came home and did that video, and while I was doing it, my back didn't hurt at all!

    I was wearing wedges all day when I probably should be wearing flats so I'm sure that didn't help. I was also sitting at my desk for a few hours, and I haven't been in the office since I threw out my back.

    I have another question though- did either of you take muscle relaxers? My friend gave me hers from when her back went out. I took one before bed 2 nights ago, and I think it did help me sleep, but I don't know if it did anything beneficial for my back.

  9. #9
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    Default Exercise After Throwing Back Out????

    I've severely subluxed my back twice, of all the times I've thrown it out, so I was given muscle relaxers those times. I only took them minimally because I don't think it's actually good for me to be knocked out flat on my back all day, not moving, when I'm injured. So yah, they helped me sleep. When I wasn't knocked out I could tell I was moving a bit more fluidly but I don't feel it sped my recovery any. It seems to take me the same amount of time to recover no matter what.

    It really sounds like this may be a bad form induced injury based on what you said so I'd focus on that when you get back to it. Also, put extra effort into your glutes and hamstrings. It's a little known fact that many low back injuries originate from weakness in these areas.

    Glad the yoga helped! That or Pilates always helps me. I just start slow as tolerated and usually by day 3-4 I can get through most moves.
    Last edited by VASLP; 06-17-2015 at 05:38 PM.
    Married 10/16/04
    "If our thoughts are worth a penny, what are our dreams worth?"

  10. #10
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    taffers - so that video is from Fitness Blender and I am OBSESSED with Fitness Blender! I love their workouts!! I do one every morning. On their website they have more than 400 free workouts (which are also all on youtube). It's a husband-wife team and they are committed to healthy fitness. One of the things that I really like about their videos is that they constantly give cues about good form, and they do a great job of ensuring that you work different aspects of every muscle. They have everything from beginner to advanced high intensity interval training workouts.

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