Tuesday, March 24

Back Log: Chapter 18

Why not stay with the theme, eh?

So, continual bitching about my back brings continual advice.  Gerry "The Pflug" Pflug suggests reading a book, not so much for the medical relief brought about by the act of reading, but for the information within.

Dough seconds the notion.  Says the book did him a lot of good.  I check the local library website... not one copy in the entire collection.  I give up.

Dough, knowing that I can be a cheap bastard, offers to mail his to me.  I accept.  It arrives on Friday.

I open it while cooking dinner.  The first thing I read?

"Myth 1: Acute back pain in short-term pain... Many studies show that far from being short-term, over 50% of patients suffer from recurring attacks or have persistent or chronic pain following their initial period of disablement."

Well that sounds shitty.  I don't like the sound of "persistent or chronic."  Let's flip some more.

"Myth 6: You should take it easy and avoid vigorous activity.  This advice may be necessary for one or two days after the onset of acute pain, but otherwise it is best to regain your mobility as soon as pain permits."

That's better.  Something to justify what I've already been doing... ignore the pain and go ride a bike.

So anyways, there's a lot of advice and "exercises" in this tiny little book.  Skip the advice.  I want an active approach.  On Sunday, I read and try to absorb the "exercises."  There's a lot of info.  Do Exercise 1 for three minutes ten times a day during the first three weeks.... something like that.   Too many rules.  I see pictures and a few numbers... grab my "yoga" mat and do all of them.  I do them even better than the book wants me to.  If it says do it for two to three minutes, I shoot for four.

Take the book to work on Monday.  Decide to read it cover to cover.  I see that the "exercises" had a lot more rules than I absorbed in my cursory glances and half-assed applications.

I wasn't supposed to hold certain "poses" at all.  They were supposed to be motions.  I wasn't even supposed to do certain "exercises" at all.  Doh.

Then this explained all that:

"... athletes are highly motivated to participate in their treatment and sometimes carry to excess the advice given to them in an attempt to speed recovery."

I hardly consider myself an "athlete," but I kinda fit this description.  It's just that the "exercises" have so many rules and timelines.  It would be much easier if they set this up with a handy flowchart for dummies like me that can't absorb that much information.  I read a fair amount and have decent comprehension, but if a fork tuning manual read anything like this, I would never ride anything but rigid all the time.

On the advice side of things, I took from it two things:

Stop sitting like a pile of shit.

Stop doing anything hunched over... which is pretty much my M.O. for doing anything in the bike room, yard work... I'm surprised I don't cut vegetables bent over with the cutting board on the floor.  I need to think things through before I start any task now.  Meh.

There's a ton of good info in this book.  I did some of the (correct) things yesterday, and I ended up sleeping all through the night (aside from when I woke myself up with a strange snore burst).  I'm quite hopeful, but trying to find someway to put this into my unstructured life.  The only thing I do everyday with consistency is eat two organic toaster pastries (I'm a health nut) and drink a French press of coffee.

For the most part, the book really targets low back pain.  I've noticed over the last couple of months that when I helicopter my left arm, my shoulder blade runs back and forth over a lump, enough so to make a noise.  I don't remember that being there before I injured my ribs back in January, so who the hell knows what that's about?  I do know that my shoulders/neck hurt when I spend to much time in the Lazy American Hunchback position, so I'm doing my best to sit and stand in the best Prairie Dog position I can maintain whenever I feel myself slouching.

So if you see me looking like I'm watching out for predators, don't worry.  It's just my new thing to do now.  Nothing's coming to eat us.


Anonymous said...

In regards to your shoulder, you shouldn't helicopter the entirety of the left arm. Instead, hold up a white towel and wave it around like a helicopter.

Peter Pablo

Anonymous said...

did you not cut and paste the isbn # I mentioned earlier????

Full body self treatment book and maybe more like a fork manual.


Anonymous said...

undercover of the night...

maybe its HIV?

try -

listen to

should solve your problems... buy

problem solved


Anonymous said...

here's some vid from up north - snowshoe trail riding...

at night

at day