Just a quick update. My back is pretty much back to where it was before the big episode of pain. That is, it hurts a bit and is stiff much of the time. I went to a pretty cool physical therapist at Kaiser who tested the strength and flexibility of my quads, hamstrings, butt, etc and showed me some good exercises. And I now have one of those giant exercise balls for the first time ever. I've used them at gyms and PT appointments, but now I have my very own. I'm supposed to do "Superman" exercises, which actually don't make me feel very super at all. These are to strengthen the butt, especially the left butt, which is an estimated 20% weaker than the right butt. Who knew? And I stretch my quads, especially the rectus femoris on the left side, and I take load off my lower back several times a day by leaning on a counter or table, or using the arms of a chair to un-weight the spine.
I had not one but two dear friends send me books on healing my back; so far it looks as though they directly contradict each other, but I'll see how it goes.
I notice that as I become more active again, my left knee is getting sore again. So far I've just been up to a couple of walks to and from the train station. Yesterday I push-mowed the lawn and that seemed to be enough for one day. Tuesday I have another PT appointment, so I'm going to check on what I can do to strengthen the knee too.
It's definitely a bumpy patch on the road to a Big Fat Fitness Comeback, but it has spurred me to start modifying my diet, my first serious attempt at this in a few years. I need to lighten the load on the spine and all the joints, since I don't ever want to go through 10 days like that again. I've logged back on to Weight Watchers, which has changed since I was last on it; I think for the better.
I am not going to make this a weight loss blog, except as it relates directly to the BFFC. I have had, in the past, a tendency to get very obsessive about food and weight loss when I've been working to drop pounds. I am very, very, serious about not obsessing this time. I'm not keeping a scale in the house, for example.
I will keep you posted more or less regularly on my transition from rehab back to training. I don't know how much I will be able to work the yoga into that, but obviously I will need to be diligent in some way about strengthening and stretching to keep all my bits in working order.
More soon, comrades!