February 24th, 2020

planet

physical therapy

Sometime in 2017 I went to see my doctor about persistent back pain I'd had for month. She x-rayed me, said my disks and spine looked great, I was aligned. Gave me a sheet of stretches to try each day and said call me in two weeks if it's not better.

I get behind on things sometimes.

this year I had this new years resolution to take care of my body so I've been getting back in shape. I go to the gym at least every other day. I run around the track, then some days I do the 1-hour intermediate yoga class, other days I do some weights especially for my core and upper body. lat pulldowns, chest press, and lots of stretches. I'm running longer - now I'm up to 17 minutes, I add a minute every week or so. I've gotten in the habit of packing my bag and heading there after work. Sometimes it means I have to log in at home to catch up on work email, but I think it's worth it, I feel better.

my back still hurts though. I can't sit for more than 30 minutes or so without feeling it, and I baby it all day, knowing all these things I can and can't do. In yoga I am careful not to do anything that makes me feel those back muscles, because I think that's what started me hurting in the first place. So I don't do planks, or warrior 3.

I did tell my doctor about it though, and she referred me to a physical therapist who has diagnosed me as having slightly weak core and really weak butt muscles.

it turns out running works the front of your lower body pretty well, but not the back of it. running up hills is great but I live in Kansas. So without strong glutes, your lower back muscles try to do more work of holding you up when you sit and they get sore and tired. I also have a stiff upper spine and lack flexibility in my hamstrings.

All this is fascinating - cut to the chase, I have a different sheet of stretches and exercises to do. And I must see them in one week.

This is okay with me because the exercises will fit in well with my current workout routine. It's nothing revolutionary - bridge pose, Pilates marches. She also showed me how I can do some of those yoga moves if I'm able to super engage my core to make sure I'm supported.

I'm still basically sad that I have to "do things" to not be in pain. I used to be able to sit for hours and computer away. I don't want to feel like I'm going downhill. But at least my pain is not so bad compared to what other people deal with, and according to the physical therapist, there is hope for me.