T Nation

Who You Jivin With That Cosmik Debris

Short description, my back is fucked and I’m embarking on a new journey to find some “real” answers, relief and strength. I don’t want to hear any more BS answers.

I know a handful of you over here, and I’ve read a few logs of people putting themselves back together so thought I’d be in good company, among the old farts. Previous log in PW on my Oly weightlifting adventure: http://tnation.T-Nation.com/free_online_forum/sports_body_women_training_performance_powerful/shine_on_you_crazy_diamond?id=4594417&pageNo=0

In the last 3 weeks I’ve had 3 Dr’s, 2 PT’s, 1 Osteo , 1 NMT & 1 MRI still know squat, been housebound for the last 2 1/2 weeks. Not to mention my years of having back issues, but nothing as debilitating as this. Got lots of theories though. Too tired to list them all at the moment. Osteopath’s 1st session helped but er my 3rd one I actually felt worse. Finally after 3 different prescriptions got some painkillers that actually work.

I know I have a few weaknesses, so I’m going to work on those (which funnily enough I was actually starting just before this happened). Also my back isn’t my only problem, so I’m going to work on strengthening every last damn thing that I can.

Goals this week are basically getting back to normal life:

  1. Get some answers of what I “can do” for exercise from Dr & Osteo
  2. Back at work, only sitting for 20 mins & then walk around (I seize up if I sit too long)
  3. Getting my hands on a 1 day free trial in a gym that has a hydrotherapy area
  4. Only take pain killers if I’m in some serious pain & can’t function
  5. Do some fucking house work, the place is very disorganised

I don’t know how long this is all going to take me, but long term goal is to get back to oly lifting. And diving season starts in March, fingers crossed I’ll be able to get back to that, of course someone might have to carry my tank for me :wink: And on that note

Say what you will about Zappa (& there are lots of names he’s been called), he kept the music industry “interesting” for decades.

Left us for the old peeps? Well, they do know stuff, I guess…

Sorry the back still isn’t working out. I’m sending happy thoughts.

I got your back!


Just showing my support, girlie! Get that back squared away, aye?

Another day, another sausage! MUAH!

In on the first page. I have a log over here too, actually it’s a threesome log with Edgy and Print. :smiley:

I’ll answer the sprint question over here, yes I’m the sprinter gal who abandoned her log, I’m fickle. But I still love the sprints, I’m doing(sort of) this sprinting 6 times a week thing I read about in a recent TN article. I’m doing my own lazier version.

Welcome, bingo night is Friday night btw.

I’m confused. Are you starting a training log over here? Or just looking for feedback regarding your back injury? If the former, perhaps some background would help (age, weight, training goals, etc.). If the latter, you might get better response posting in the Injuries and Rehab section.

That being said, have you looked into ART? I have thrown my back out twice and had great success with my ART practitioner calming the muscle spasms and getting me back to normal.


Hi Techie, I would like to help with the problem, I have had my share of back issues also -

but need a little more info…

  1. how long have you had the issue?
  2. what have the docs told you?
  3. age and level of fitness?
  4. how can I keep those damned kids off my lawn?

this’ll help us to understand.

btw, we’ll be having wheelchair races in the quad on Thursday - don’t tell the staff!

Well this is supposed to be a start on a log while I put humpty dumpty back together again :wink: Wasn’t specifically looking for any direct advice but any advice is always welcomed. I was going out of my mind for awhile curled up in a fetal position for the last 2 weeks, I’m just trying to keep my attitude moving forward.

Age: 37
Weight: 69kg
Training goals: get back to Oly lifting, I was chasing a 50kg snatch & a 90kg squat until I was interrupted.

At the moment I’m actually unsure about what my short term training goals are, I’m still waiting on the go ahead of what I can do over the next couple of weeks. Strength is definitely one of them of course, I’m only guessing here but I’d say I’m going to be told to keep the weight off my spine for awhile.

I’ve had back problems since I was a teenager, some slight scoliosis (around L3), been in 2 car accidents back in the late 90’s, nothing to major but saw a chiro for awhile which helped. In 2006 my chest/ribs were in pain, went to a Dr who had me do some cardiac tests, infections, etc. Went to a PT who actually ascertained it was my back, he did some loosening up of the area over a week or so and it went back to normal. But over the last few years since then it tightens up again, something like every 3 months, but nothing very bad, I would go back to him to get it loosened up (unfortunately he moved) & also get massages in that area too.

As for the few days before this episode…
Did lifting (nothing I have not been doing for the last 3 months) Fri(Snatches, C&J, squats), Sat (Snatches, C&J), took Sun off & did lifting Mon (C&J, squats). Everything felt fine during the sessions, nothing unusual except on Sat was carrying a heavy backpack just for like 15 minutes. Monday night I woke up in pain

Then Jan 24th it got very tight again, pain in ribs, sternum, diaphram, couldn’t breathe properly, lying down, sitting, standing all were really painful.
–went to a new PT he tried to loosen it up but nothing would help.
–went to see my Dr, he said these things happen & it will sort itself out, blah!
–my old PT was actually in town and he saw me, loosened it up, said I seem to have to mobility issues there, but he wasn’t concerned and didn’t have any real answers
–saw the other PT again who was concerned enough to make me go to another Dr. He said it didn’t seem like I have any thoracic mobility issues
–saw the new Dr, she ascertained it was around my T3-T6 area, got some pain killers & scheduled in for MRI

–was recommended to an osteopath by one of the guys in my gym, the 1st session I got some relief that lasted for 2 days, 2nd session not so much, still very much in pain. Osteo said it could be my lower back, hip misalignment could’ve wound up my upper back. He also noted that I’m pretty hypermobile in the spine.

–got MRI results (actually just after I started this log) which showed nothing really abnormal except for the following:
“small Schmorl’s node in end plate of T9. Early degenerative change in L5-S1 disc with signal reduction, posterior annular bulging & a small right sided posterior annular tear.”
I was told the above is nothing to get worried about, which is fine.

So now I guess I’m just hoping to get things back to the way they were so I can get on with oly training again. I have an idea of following this for awhile (again waiting for the ok, but I don’t see a problem) http://www.dieselsc.com/back-rehab-protocol/

Ok, if it’s T-spine I’m less helpful. L5-S1? Oh yeah. Been there, done that, got the t-shirt, gave the t-shirt to Salvation Army, saw a bum wearing the t-shirt later.

Stuff to try (some of which you may already be doing):

Piriformis - foam rolling and stretch. Like a lot.
Pressups - start slow with these
Reverse planks - these were absolute money for me and probably the only thing that truly solidified my back

Here’s a decent book to check out as well:

Patches, MiMsy & Maschy thanks for the thoughts!

Charlie, a 3some log, I still say the older one gets the kinkier one gets.

Kpsnap, I’ve looked for some ART therapists over here before, for some reason its just not too popular around here (yet). The 2 that I did find are quite a way from me & I don’t have a car around these parts. I guess I’m not writing very clear between the diazepam & tramadol and not having been in my right senses for awhile.

Edgy, thanks MR gave as much info as I could remember at the moment.

frozenkit, thanks for that. I’m ready to start anywhere again, all those look promising. Actually I need a new foam roller my old one has gotten too much luvin from me, doesn’t quite roll anymore.

The Travel Roller is a nice little travel through hell. It’s like a 4" OD hunk of PVC covered in some thin foam. Great for quads, glutes, IT bands, etc. Not great for erectors, but it works well enough.

On the reverse planks, it’s just a matter of being chest down on a swiss ball (or even a bench) and then using your lower back to hold your legs parallel to the ground. Start with 2-3 holds of 15-20 seconds. A couple times a day if possible.

That was the single exercise that got my shit back in order. When I originally bulged the disc, I ended up with a drop foot and shooting pains down my left leg and non-stop pain and discomfort pretty much constantly.

Things that helped immediately:

  • traction. Takes the pressure off the spine.
  • electro-stim and acupuncture from my PT
  • a very good massage therapist
  • multifidus work (that’s where that book comes in)
  • tons of stretching on the piriformis
  • core work. Short duration, high frequency.

I didn’t discover the reverse planks for a year and a half after “event zero” and 3 days later my back stopped hurting.

Since then, I’ve gone back to hitting 5 in the dead and throwing PRs. So back injury isn’t the end. Just means some things have to be dealt with and adjusted.

Most doctors will be far too stupid to deal with.

Hey welcome over here, lurked in your log over there I hope you get your pieces put back together again.

Howdy. Don’t post, only read since there is little I can contribute to any forum. In this case, though, . . . have you considered traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) and, more specifically, acupuncture?

I had back issues since my twenties that culminated with near-total immobility in my thirties. Eighteen months of intense therapy later, I could walk in a semi-human state and occasionally sleep through more than one hour. Stayed that way through a couple of decades – with intermittent days of immobility – and a couple of Akitas. Finally, about four years ago, I found a true acupuncturist trained in China, Viet Nam and US board certified. Couple of sessions of acupuncture cleared me up enough to actually begin rehab and true training. Total of seven one- to two-hour sessions including herbal remedies and I have never looked back in pain.

Hey - techno

welcome to old bro and sistard land
you will find allot of successful rehabbers here.
glad to see you

Welcome, nothing to add to the back issue but hope you find something that helps, soon :slight_smile:

Hey Kilt, hmm traction looks like it would do me some good actually. I’m sussing out a physio place, they seem to have the works. I tried out the reverse planks briefly last night after some stretching I was given, I’ll need to baby step it I think for the moment. I seem to have lost any type of communication with my body of late, I tell it to go one way & it goes another. But you’ve gotten me completely sold on this exercise!

Matty, thanks, yes I’ve lurked once or twice on yours too.

ShiroiDoma, I’ve had accupunture quite a bit over the years, not of late though. At the moment I’m still juggling how much money I can spend on what type of treatment. But keeping my options open.

kmcnyc, thanks again for the welcome. Before I started logging in PW, I did think about posting it here, but I like to talk about my wimmenz cycle ALOT. Not to mention everyone here seemed to have been lifting waaay longer than I have, but better late than never.

lilpower, I’ve lurked in your log too. I had to rehab my shoulder about maybe over a year ago, nothing as like what you had to go through though.

[quote]frozenkilt wrote:

Most doctors will be far too stupid to deal with.[/quote]

Yeah I’ve come to realise that. I’m starting to let go of some the anger I feel towards my now replaced Dr from when this episode started. He refused to give me a referral for an MRI (didnt’ suggest any other testing) and basically told me it’ll take care of itself. I’m hoping the new Dr works out.

Went to the osteo yesterday, feel better this morning, woke up only once last night feeling like a pony kicked me instead of a an elephant. I’ll take any progress. I’ve been told that I’m not really built for lifting heavy weights with my hypermobility?? That maybe I should’ve taken up gymnastics or something, sigh. Actually I think one of the words that were used is that my spine structure is a bit floppy. But surely that’s even more of a reason to lift heavy (relatively speaking of course). So anyway that’s one of my short term goals is to put some stronger muscles to support my floppy joints.

Actually I should at least get back to doing my wrist/forearm exercises for when I go back to snatching. Bendy wrists are fine for cleaning/front squatting but hurt like a mofo for snatching.

Most docs are truly useless to any sort of athlete, so I’ve learned over the years to only go see my doc when I want a scrip for massage so I can claim it on my medical coverage.

More overall suggestions:

  • baby-stepping everything right now is good.
  • on the rev planks, even 10 second holds will start the process.
  • pressups every couple of hours if you can manage it
  • be in rehab mode! So no olifts for now. BW squats, pushups, whatever cardio and upper body work you can do without stressing your back. It sucks and it’ll grind on your soul a bit but your body needs it.
  • the only thing the abdominal area is for is STABILITY. No crunches. Ever. Planks. Side planks. Reverse planks. Paloff press. Stir the pot. The only acceptable crunch is Stuart McGill’s modification.
  • Stuart McGill is your master now: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kukmaW9CmSU. He is a fan of the heavy lifting and an even bigger fan of spine stability. Do some youtube searches. He has tons of stuff.
  • ice baths. If you can gut it out, these are great for reducing swelling in the lower body and for general recovery. I’m not going to lie, though. It’s unpleasant as hell at first. After you adapt though, you start to look forward to it.
  • PATIENCE. Spending 4 or 6 months of dedicated rehab/traction/healing/stabilizing and then getting back at it is better than spending years doing the cycle of “starting to feel better -> resume training -> injury flare -> rinse and repeat”

As I said before, back injury is a gigantic ball of suck but it isn’t the end of anything.

Feel free to post or PM me any kind of questions, rants, fist-shaking against the world, etc. I’ve been there too. I’m a mean, nasty, evil-tempered, hate-filled son of a bitch and I wouldn’t wish back pain on anyone.

Hi there, welcome to the Geritol and Lawrence Welk scene. Sucks about your back, I have some scoliosis, but nothing like what you’ve suffered.