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December 2017



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Recovering from a Back Injury…

So I’m in the second week of recovering from a lower back injury.  You would think it would just chill after a few days but it has been ‘slow’ OK replace that with ‘Laura needs to look up patience in the dictionary.’  Actually though I feel it has been slow, it has been a steady decrease in pain and increase in movement and flexibility.  While I’m not going to be running any miles in the next few weeks, I have been able to increase the amount of stretching and dry land exercises as well as add backstroke and one-arm fly to the pool workouts.  I’m not really ready to put flip turns or regular fly in the regime quite yet and here is why. 

It did get me thinking about how long has it been since I was pain-free… 

For that answer I had to go back to before my first injury in 2006; also to when I injured my back the first time in 2007; before the Achilles injury that helped me put on a ton of weight which didn’t help my back either; to before I started my quasi-nomadic lifestyle of the last few years.... 

I realized that ‘normal’ for me has become being in pain about 25% of the time with spurts of extreme pain 100% of the time.  The 'normal' pain is about the size of a golf ball in my back, not the softball that resides when my back flares up like last week, but maybe that is not acceptable any more.  It was an interesting discovery to find I had taken this pain for granted.  Maybe it is time to see what are options open? 

So I had a talk with the Chiropractor and asked him if we could decrease the percentage of time I hurt and the number of the pain I feel?  The results are with the weight loss I have accomplished and the swimming, yoga, pilates, weights and dryland, we can decrease it at least to low single digits and into low numbers when it does act up, think 1-2 not 8.5 

As an athlete and especially with the last few years of injury after injury I had started to believe that this type of pain was normal.  A light went on, injury pain is not normal.  OK, everyone can say it ‘DUH.’  Yes sore muscles, tired muscles, draggin' rear, etc… that is all normal but injury pain is not.  I would never let another athlete believe it was so why am I willing to ‘buy the bridge’ myself?  I’m not.  So I’m not only on a quest to train while recovering but to also change this nasty little piece of what feels normal. 

I want to train hard but injury pain free.


Ugh. I understand that word about as well as you do, but this time it's my turn to remind you that your body always knows best, and, as hard as it is at times, you have to listen to it (or it will yell at you even louder!) It's still yelling, even when we become accustomed to the pain levels and/or ignore it, as we athletes are prone to do. I think you're doing the right things, using a specialist, investigating new options, but not giving up. It's hard and boring and slow right now, but healing up will make it possible for you to enjoy the things you love for alot longer time. You've listened to me vent when I've been feeling less than good, so know that I'm here when it gets rough on your end too. Love ya!