T Nation

Could Use Some Overall Advice


OK. For the entire year so far, all I've been doing for my lower body (erectors, glutes, legs) are lunges and some therapeutic assistance work; extensions and ab work.

In fact, the last time I felt my hamstrings working hard was when I was 24 and I'm now 26. By 24, I was not deadlifting for real and only squatted, did heavy extension work, leg pressed and occasionally went for extreme snatch deads which hit my posterior chains better than squats but were not much.
Before that time, my training was pretty irregular and inconsistent and I often did somewhat risky and unusual lifts which I believe gave me good, overall posterior chain and core strength but did nothing for my quadriceps. Since 24, however, my hamstrings have been depending on nothing but squatting and this worries me for the following reasons;

-I don't really care that much about my squat numbers; I just want a big deadlift but I have hurt my back just pulling the bar off the ground for rows and lunges don't kill my lower back like back squats do. I used to always squat ATG and just read an article about how risky it supposedly is. I just find parallel squatting to be lame so I don't want to do it. Front squats seem impossible to do properly. Hence, I lunge to reduce spinal loading while still getting a reasonable workout.
-My knees are aching a lot recently and even my back is not feeling that great. I think my hamstring/quad strength and size ratio may be endangering the health of my knees but could it affect the back as well?

I definitely don't have flexibility issues that could cause these problems. If anything, I Believe excess flexibility is what contributed to my hospitalization from lifting prior to hitting 25. As it stood, my discs were being ripped by both the lifts and the contortion I was doing.

I started having serious problems with my back prior to hitting 25, when I switched from the historical hamstring inflexibility and dominance to quad dominance and hamstring flexibility. Hard to say what caused which as stress accumulates with age.

After my blow-out right before hitting 25, my back has never been the same. Judging by the fact that I have lost some sensation from my right inner thigh and groin, and I have a burning sensation in my right groin, at the junction of the thigh and the pubic region. I eventually had severe pain in the right erector, down to the buttock but upon relative healing, I had an episode of a hot, constant burning sensation and loss of sensation across my right quadricep. The thigh, except for the groin region, has since regained a fair bit of sensation.

Sorry if this is a hard read. Although I have specific plans, I'm a very emotional lifter and not very fond of this or that periodization or program, and have gone my own way. So I'm not a noob to be patronized, even if my training has not been the best. I want to keep doing things in a way that is satisfactory for me, but am willing to look into any changes that I feel would not destroy my motivation.


This sounds like you've got medical issues so really should be consulting with somebody qualified and who knows about training (i.e. not a normal doctor, who will just say "rest").


What was the diagnosis when you hurt your back?


I was scanned and the scan produced little results. They found some degeneration of discs but said it's nothing out of the ordinary. I had sciatica symptoms earlier but when I used to hurt most seriously, I never had serious sciatica symptoms (pain traveling down the leg) and it was localized largely to the right erector area. At my worst, I could hardly get dressed without screaming due to not being able to contract/raise my right leg/hip.

I've thought of chiropractic treatment and would like to know if it has helped anyone? And have had massage many times in the past. The masseurs commented that my right erector as well as the rhomboid region were very tight but could not diagnose what it was, being masseurs.


Could it have been inflammation / swelling of your SI joint? It's one of the more painful injuries I've ever had and some of your symptoms sound familiar. Did it get worse with prolonged sitting? If I sat down for more than 20 minutes I'd have to take 45-60s waiting for blood to run through it before I could start walking. Even then it took a few steps for the pain to subside.


Prior to reading your reply, I did research and what you're saying seems to correlate witt.h what I found out. I'm going to consult a professional very soon, just not a MD. Signature; sick of the pain.