I am two and a half weeks into this injury, but I’m doing better and nearly ready to start exercising in earnest again (oh how I am longing for a bike ride! **sigh) I have been doing basic stretches and strengthening for lower back and hip/leg flexibility. I also have been including some water-walking and paddling (as in doggie paddling, to start, but I have progressed to something that I imagine looks like a horse or hippo “running” in water) and then the heat and ice afterwards.
Natural anti-inflammatories is something that I decided to look into, as I am allergic to NSAIDS, making the initial injury phase really uncomfortable as I can’t take those really effective meds. Searching around the net, I found A LOT of info; and followed some basic guidelines for diet and herbal remedies for fighting inflammation due to arthritis. I am compiling some of the basics to write up what I did with the information (Did I mention there is A LOT!?!) But I just stuck to what I had available and made the most sense for me. Eating the mostly paleo diet I do already, put so many of the recommended foods on my “list” to begin with, but there were some changes and additions. Be on the lookout for that info soon!
But here is the lower back exercise routine that has kept me mobile and getting back to normal:
Warm up with some basic side bends, going only as far as feeling a stretch/no pain!, and front and back bends, and then some rotations. ONLY GOING AS FAR AS the pain allows, NOT going further INTO the stretch.
HOLD all of these 10-15 seconds, REPEAT each one 3-5x (each side if done individually)
1. BUTTERFLY: lay on back, knees up; rotate feet and knees to drop outward; use hands on inner knee for some pressure.
2. COBRA: lay on stomach, hands under shoulders, push so upper body lifts, NO SHOULDER SCRUNCHING! and keep pelvis on floor.
3. KNEE DROPS: laying on back, knees up, lower both knees to one side, keeping upper body still, return to center.
4. KNEE PRESS/PULL: laying on back, knees bent; bring one knee toward chest, placing both hands on top of knee; while pushing knee AWAY simultaneously resist pressure and continue pulling knee TO you.
5. AD/AB’s: a) from same position on back, separate knees, place both fists together between and press knees inwards. b) place palms on outside of knees and press knees outwards.
I am moving onto some others now (cat/camel stretch lunges, hip flexors and hammys as I now feel very tight) but these have been the meat of my program, am and pm. So hopefully in a week I can tackle a run! (maybe?!)
The upper body workout is so limited when your back is strained, but it is possible. From arm circles (small to big and front to back) seated punch/block/strike series and laying on the floor for some chest presses and chair tricep-dips made their way into the routine and made me feel better as well.
I hope I can graduate into some STANDING exercises this week. I’m going to test a few things this morning and see where it goes. So onto my stretching and then some hydro therapy, and hippo-running.