Epidural Injection L4 L5

Yesterday I received another epidural injection in the L4 L5 discs of my spine. I had one done about 1 month ago in the L5 S1 disk of my spine. My doctor says I can receive up to 3 epidural shots in a 6 month period. They definitely do help ease the pain in the back, but it will never be 100%. By the combination of epidural shots, physical therapy, and my pain medication; it has been possible to manage my back pain.

As I stated in my previous post, I have started exercising regularly again. I have been wearing one of the those back belts. They actually do make a bit of difference and it kind of forces good posture. Besides from muscle aches due to so much time off, my back has been doing okay. I have tried squatting with very light weight down to parallel position and it hasn’t really bothered me. However, I tried deadlifting with the same weight and I did start to feel a little bit of non-muscular pain in my back. In result of that, I decided to give up deadlifting and continue with the light weight squats. There is an apparatus at my gym where I can exercise my lower back with my own body weight; I’m going to try in a few days.

With respect to cardio, I have been using the elliptical machine. I like it very much. You can get a real good workout from that with minimal impact on the knees and back, maybe even more than jogging. You can set different strides, incline, and resistance that will allow you to exercise with more intensity. It allows for a nice smooth motion and really eliminates any high-impact that would come from normal jogging.

First Day of Exercise in Over a Year

Today I renewed my gym membership and decided to start exercising again.  I’m changing my entire workout regimen to cater toward my injury.  I used to be big into powerlifting moves and using extremely heavy weight.  Since my injuries, my goals have obviously changed.  My priorities now are to get back into good physical shape and focus on strengthening my back.  I’m going to avoid using heavy weights on exercises that put compression on the spine, such as squats.  I’m not going to eliminate squatting, I’m just going to use really light weight and focus on reps and form.

Today I did a light workout just to get back into the swing of things.  I started with 5 sets of bench press, 5 sets of squats, and 5 sets of bicep curls.  I then layed down on the decline bench for about 10 min to decompress by spine.  I finshed off with 10min on the bicycle.

It feels good to get back into exercising again.  I’m just trying to be extremely careful with what I do.  I’ve come to just accept I’m always going to have a little bit of pain and discomfort in my lower back.  I wear one of those back braces when I do anything physical now.  I’m just trying to strengthen the surrounding areas of my back and prevent the damage from getting any worse.