Lower Back Injury Advice?

I’d like some advice around training/diet/rehab with lower back issues. Been having some discomfort for about a year with my lower back (not brought on by anything specific other than wear and tear I guess) and had been going to a physio a while back which coupled with foam rolling, stretching and mobility exercises made it better. Hit the gym yesterday and started off with some power cleans then onto squats. Really struggled with my PR set (doing 5/3/1) and figured I’d strained something and was in discomfort yesterday but nothing crazy. Also weirdly when doing unilateral DB bench my right arm went to shit on weight I can normally do 8/9 reps with after 3 reps but my left still got 9 reps.

Woke up this morning for a piss about 3ish and I felt loads of pressure on my lower back and was in agony for the rest of the night whenever I moved in bed. Struggled to get up this morning had to get some help and the pressure remained. Managed to get moving around and slow walked the kids to school then went to drs with my right glute/ass cheek painful when walking.

Dr prescribed me some nervous system targeting pain relief drugs and referred me to a specialist. Told me I need 6 weeks off the iron but cardio is fine. Obviously I’m not keen on the idea of taking 6 weeks off and I’m gonna try and train around it. Just after any ideas from anyone else in terms of training whose been through this. Was thinking of going to a push/pull using bodybuilding isolation type exercises as I doubt I can execute a proper 5/3/1 cycle at the moment.

Also diet wise I’ve been on a gaining phase for about 7 weeks after an 18 month fat loss programme. Given my changes to training any advice about perhaps going to maintenance or even a fat loss diet? I’m mindful though with the removal of heavy compound training fat loss may not be the best way to go.

Any advice about rehab exercises? Seem to remember Jim Wendler talking about weighted vest walks helping his back post injury, waiting for my dr to send me some literature through but its going to be very general no doubt.


Have you ruled out an SI joint injury?

To be honest I had to google that, was going with a slipped disc at first. I won’t know what the problem is until I see a specialist which with the NHS could be a while.

There’s a bunch of things it could be, SI joint issue, tight lower back or hip muscles cranking down on one side (tight QL muscle or tight piriformis). Or a strained hip flexor. Or a strained muscle. Even a slightly bulged disk that has Not ruptured.

Do you have any shooting pains running down your leg? Or any issues moving/controlling your foot and ankle? These are the kinds of symptoms usually associated with disks bulging onto nerves.

If you just feel super tight and stiff, and getting moving (gingerly) can loosen you up, it’s probably muscular.

What about standing, and putting weight on one leg or the other? Is it hard to support yourself on one side? That’s usually how I feel with an SI issue.

I would proceed with caution with a spine injury that could involve the spinal cord.

But an SI joint can be rectified fairly easily. I had got mine twisting when lifting a box full of books when moving from one apartment to another. It is very painful but can be easily remedied with the right adjustments and long stride walking. You can self adjust a couple of ways (difficult to express in words), or a chiropractor or physical therapist might be knowledgeable what best works and could do those adjustments.

But it is important that it is not a spinal column problem.

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No shooting pains running down my leg or issues with foot/ankle, my dr checked this with me yesterday. It’s painful to support myself on one side, also found it strange that my strength on my right arm weakened which is the side I’m in the most paint with

I was considering going to either an osteopath or chiropractor. Won’t know for sure what it is until I see a specialist and with the NHS that could be months away. Got out of bed no issues this morning and went for a long walk without being in too much pain so least I can do that. Wish I had a static bike at home but only got a rower for CV and that’s no good to me right now. Am loathe to join a gym again but might have to just to use machines and stationery cardio stuff

For SI joint concerns the walks need to be of long strides, not necessarily long walks. I had a chiropractor that told me if more people took a short walk with long strides every day he would go out of business. That chiropractor was a friend of mine, a fellow lifter.

Thanks for the advice, did that last night after reading one of your earlier posts just did 10 minutes. Will do the same bit later as well and see if it makes a difference doing it daily.

So an update:
Back’s much better, been doing long stride walks and more mobility/stretching. Back to heavy squatting/deadlifting. My problem now is upper body pressing, my right shoulder has lost a load of strength which has resulted in OHP and bench going right down! Osteopath treatment has been good for my back but think it may have just been a symptom of something else. I know it’s nothing medical to worry about as my lower body strength is going up