So after a lovely night out with the husband at Nashville’s farewell tour (For which I decorated my own cowgal boots, they had my name on and everything), I end up injuring my lower back, getting stuck in a very awkward position and having the on call Dr come out to see me – I’d been crying in agony and by this point, unknown to me, my face was covered in mascara streaks – YAY - #Glamlife.
So now plopped back into my normal life my Doctor tells me I can still exercise, yaaaay, although I kind of just want to rest because I am crying on the inside, but staying active is good for your back apparently, but not if it causes pain, but everything seems to cause pain – so I’ve had to find some work arounds.
Obviously it goes without saying, everyone is different, check with your GP first if you are OK to do these, also general NHS back pain advice https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/back-pain/ and exercises to ease lower back pain https://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/Backpain/Pages/low-back-pain-exercises.aspx
So in this post I'll just go into some basic do's and do nots, I may or may not go into weights in a further post, because well it's a bit more tricky and I don't want you to have a back twinge while you've got an ACME style weight above your head
Some Do's and Don'ts:
Don't: Standing Toe Touch Hamstring Stretch
Standing toe touches can put stress on your lumbar spine and can overstretch lower back muscles and hamstrings
Do this instead: Supported hamstring stretch
Lay on your back and with one knee bent.
Loop a band or towel under the ball of your foot.
Straighten leg and stretch against the support.
You will feel a gentle stretch down the back of your leg.
Hold for 15 to 30 seconds.
Repeat on the other leg
Don't: Standing Quad Stretch
Do this instead: Side Lying Quad Stretch
Lay on your side, HIPS stacked, and spine in neutral alignment, resting your head on your hand.
Bend your top knee
Use your hand to pull your foot towards your bum and hold for 30 seconds.
Repeat on the other side.
Don't: Leg Raises
Although leg raises are used to strengthen core muscles, they can put a huge amount of stress on your spine.
Do this instead: Reverse Curl ups
Lay on your back, arms extended, palms down.
Bend and raise both knees at a 90-degree angle
Bring both knees to the chest while lifting your hips off the floor
Don't: Sit-Ups/Full crunch
While sit-ups will strengthen your core or abdominal muscles, this exercise can put a lot of pressure on your spine.
Do this instead: Planks or Partial Crunches
Perform a plank on your forearms, dependent on your core strength, you can do this on your knees or on your toes.
Hold for 15 - 30 seconds.
Partial crunches can strengthen your core. (Ensure that your feet and lower back should remain in contact with the mat for the duration of this exercise)
Lay with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor.
Cross your arms over your chest.
Use the muscles in your stomach to raise your shoulders off the floor.
Lower back down.
Do this instead: Wall Sit
Stand around 10 inches from the wall
Lean back until your back is flat against the wall.
Pressing your lower back into the wall slide slowly down until your knees are slightly bent.
Hold for 5 seconds.
Slide back up the wall.
Do this instead: Walk
Jogging or running are going to impact your lower back, walking and keeping active can help reduce back pain.
Don't: High Intensity Cardio Workouts
Do this instead: Swim
Swimming is low-impact, the water supports your body and it doesn’t involve much twisting of your back.
Backstroke and breaststroke require the least rotation of your spine.
So that's it for now. I'll keep you updated with my work around's as I navigate exercising with me old crone lady back.