Hello to all,
I thought I'd take a moment to introduce myself and to say how grateful I am to find this forum.
I hope it won't bore anybody to briefly read what brought me to this site. FOrgive me as I know this is a long introduction, but I am simply so pleased to find a site like this, I may be writing a long introduction. My hope is that someone might relate to my situation. In advance, thanks to anyone who reads this, and esp to anyone who would like to respond. It's much appreciated.
I have been an avid weightlifter and personal trainer for many years. The gym has always been my second home.
In June of 2007 while weightlifting, I sustained a back injury from lifting too heavy.
I had it treated right away with successful chiropractic adjustments. My problem is that I was too impatient to return to lifting and so I went back prematurely, AND lifted too heavy.
I re-injured my back (at L4-L5), and was out for the next several months with chronic pain. In Feb. of 08, I was referred to a physical therapist and massage therapist who work together in and they have done a great job in getting me healed.
I learned a lot about my situation from them. I presented with very tight hip flexors on my right side, and a hypermobile L4-L5. The massage therapist also noted there was a signficant imbalance in the back mucles of my left and right sides. It created a shearing force which also contributed to the pain. Lastly, despite years of doing squatting and deadlifting, I had weak gluteal muscles and a weak core.
These conditions were likely brought about because in all the years I lifted, I stupidly never paid attention to warming up sufficiently, I never cooled down, and never stretched. I hate to say it, but I thought I didn't need to given how well I performed in the gym.
They have continued to do great work. They have been successful at rehabbing me, but I am embarrassed to say, I've not learned from my past mistakes. I again, on several more occassions, would go back to the gym and once I am feeling close to my "old self" I would again get too ambitious, lift too heavy and wind up in pain and out of the gym again for several months. The desire to return to my previous "size" has always taken precedence over any thoughtful, measured and appropriate approach to rehab. I know, I have only myself to blame.
I finally had an MRI performed, which confirmed a disc extrusion at L4-L5. I am once again on the disabled list after my most recent stupidity in the gym.
I have since moved to another city, and yesterday, the new massage therapist confirmed what the other one had told me back then. Muscle imbalance in my upper back, and very weak glutes, etc. This despite the fact that corrective exercises I have done religiously over the past two years, have emphasized strengthening my glutes and core.
At the present time, I have been feeling really troublesome tension and tenderness in almost all my muscle parts, which for the first time ever, has caused a lot of sleep disruption. ON top of that, each morning, I awake with pain in my L4-L5. These conditions never appeared before with this frequency and intensity and it's the first time since my back trouble started that I have had sleep disruption becuase of the pain.
I hate to start taking muscle relaxing medication, but I need relief. Again, I only have myself to blame for being so stupid, and my hope is that God willing, when I recover next time, I will go extremely slowly, cautiously when I return to the gym. (though I've said that before more than once :-( .
Anyway, that's my story. Again, my apologies for the length of this. If anyone gets down to hear and wishes to share any thoughts and encouragement and positive feedback, I'd be grateful.
Many thanks and healing to you all. Sincerely,