On one hand: I found out some stuff:

  1. Back stroke doesn’t work well with my shoulder I cut it out.
  2. Walking range: pushed it a bit…turned around at one mile and perhaps I should have turned around .15 miles sooner (1.7 went very well)

So..I am seeing improvement. Nevertheless..humility is the order of the day.

Swim: 500 of mixed strokes (25o of it crawl)

then 100 fins/drill, 100, 100 fins/drill, 100, 100 fins drill

10 x 50 on the 1:10; mostly 52-53, with one 50 at then end

50 side, then 100 fins dolphin kick

A LOT of PT (35 minutes)

2 mile walk

Moving on

Getting ready for a baseball game. I got a back friendly workout in…well, maybe. I have to evaluate walking when I deadlift (high handle) and what I do on the incline press: if I strain, even a little, on the incline or shoulder press I get some “lumbar referral” sensation.

LOTS of PT; a lot of it with extras, and extra rotator cuff.
pull ups: 10, 10, 15, 10, 10, then 7 chins, 5 wide with PT rests
push ups: 40 sissy, 30 feet elevated, 20 deficit, 10 regular
incline presses: (not high incline) 10 x 88, 10 x 110, 10 x 121 (felt the strain on set 3..very mild)

deadlifts: low: 10 x 134, 10 x 184 (ok), 4 inch: 10 x 224, 8 inch 10 x 260 these felt ok; I did work the upper glute but didn’t get thigh quivering.

1.4 mile walk to finish; I was ready to stop when I did..pain free to 1.1 then slight

Savoring doing what you can do

Ok, here is what is going on with me (summarized): I’ve always had problems with my lumbar spine (lower back; L5-S1); I first remember injuring it in high school, a couple of times, and once as an undergraduate. I had formal physical therapy for it in 1978, 2006, 2012 and now in 2021-2022 (and that is what I can remember).

I’ve finally reached the point where PT and behavior modification isn’t enough. What made this one sneaky is that my lower back never hurt directly; the pain was almost exclusively in my left glute and I had tingles down the leg; that lead me to continue to do counter productive things like “low handle deadlifts’ where, with heavier weights, my back did round a bit. I kept the arch in my bench press.

When I walked…I’d get to the point of pirformis tightness (and yes, that WAS /IS an issue), stretch, and move on.

It never hurt (or rarely did) during the lift itself, but I felt a left leg ache doing my McKenzie press ups afterward.

So..with running gone (lack of spacing in my right knee..I felt the pain radiate to the top of my shin), swimming limited (have to respect my right rotator cuff) and now impinged nerve, I am facing restrictions for the first time in my life.

I thought about posting stuff from the days of yore (marathons, faster (for me) runs, trail ultras, 5K open water swims, “heavy” (for me) deadlifts but non of that matters..a bit.

What matters is what I can do NOW and what I’ll be able to do after whatever invasive treatment (operation? injections?) I’ll get.

My adjustments:

  1. Lumbar specific PT (with the usual rotator cuff and glute PT as well)
  2. Walking to the point of symptoms/super light pain and second walk
  3. Modification of lifting: feet off the ground bench presses, switching to light “high incline” presses for the shoulder and doing a “belt squat” type movement with the trap bar and much lighter weights, keeping the lumbar out of it. Bench mark: a movement that causes even slight pain or pain after the fact has to be changed.