Here’s the post again to someone else but applies here. Are you speaking of a literal popping sound, or are you using the word pop to express that your back gives out, so to speak?
I suffered from two herniated discs which I’ve discussed at length in my personal thread in the bodybuilding section. This, after 25 years of being physically active with no injuries. I am not a surgical candidate but have suffered from a lot of nerve pain radiating through my leg and into my left foot. I went through five months of physical therapy and use neurontin as prescribed by my physiatrist.
My word of advice: go to an orthopedist or physiatrist NOW! You might have herniated discs. Many people have herniated discs but they’re not clinically significant because they are not touching nerves and causing dysfunction or pain. Actually, many people are walking around with bodily abnormalities that cause no pain or dysfunction and because of that, they don’t know it. But you are experiencing pain.
My herniated discs did not come on as a result of one action, if I recall correctly. It was a pain here, a pain there, and then one day I had sciatica and knew something was wrong. That radiculopathy has not fully gone away for over seven months! So I’ve been walking around with daily pain for nine months or so. The pain has resolved quite a bit, but it’s not fully gone. Herniated discs requiring no surgery and minor nerve damage can take up to two years to resolve. When I started PT, we did no exercises providing rotation or compression of the spine. We started off with foam rolling, stretching, cable and band exercises, and some weighted hip thrusts. We slowly progressed to more compressive exercises like RDL’s, trap bar deadlifts, and bar step ups.
I am now on my own but still consult my PT once per month and I in no way am doing highly compressive exercises until my radiculopathy resolves. And my advice to you is to do the same after checking what’s wrong. People get too hell bent on sticking to what they’re doing, a program or exercise, when that shouldn’t even be the current concern. Some guy like myself had no and still doesn’t have any business in excelling at highly compressive exercises like overhead standing presses, standard deadlifts, and back squats, three of the 5/3/1 staples, although 5/3/1 can be modified for variations of those lifts that are less compressive. But again, excelling in strength shouldn’t be a concern for a guy who has long term pain on and off. The concern should be to get healthier and pain free. If one keeps pushing despite showed a warning sign something is wrong, then he might find himself one day going far backwards, when he could’ve just maintain some muscle mass and strength while recuperating.
Here’s an example of one of my two leg workouts per week or once every four to five days. It involves a lot of pre-exhaust to keep the load light on "bigger exercises"
Warmup: Five minutes of jump rope or the elliptical, foam rolling, stretching.
- GHR or Swiss Bar leg curls 3 x AMRAP
- Single leg RDL’s
- Split squat with dumbbells 3 x 8-15
- Goblet squats 2-3 x 20
- Pull-throughs 2-3 x 20
- Calf raises x 3 x 15-20
- Ab wheel 3 x AMRAP
Nope, certainly not a 5/3/1 leg workout but it allows me to train my legs with my injuries til they get better and maintain strength and muscle mass.
Please check the article by John Rusin on training with back pain.
You really should stay away from heavy overhead lifting, bent over rows, standard deadlifts, leg press, and situps while your back gets better. And as I said, get it checked out! Sometimes major back problems remain “silent” while they’re brewing, and then you’re left with some serious symptoms or dysfunction.
With that said, and this might come across as rude, I think my advice will fall on deaf ears generally (not just by you) So you can take what you want from someone who suffered with a real problem or continue to go on as you are.