ouch, bad back again

I have started running after losing just over 4.5 stones. From a breathless 100 yards I am now doing 5 miles in just under an hour. My old nagging lower back injury as returned to haunt me this week. If the past is an indicator I usually get fully over the pain in about a week. Is running OK for people with this complaint or will I do more harm than good?


  • NessieNessie ✭✭✭
    Rest up until it gets better, or you may do yourself some damage. I'd also recommend seeing a chiropractor/osteopath to try to sort out any underlying problem.
  • i had to pull out of the Great North Run as i did my back in 5 days before the run. I only did my first run after recovery 3 weeks after the injury. I agree with Nessie, go to an osteopath. I've had 2 weeks of treatment. It can be expensive but in my opinion well worth it. It may be better to do other activities like swimming or a few sessions on an exercise bike for a couple of weeks to rest the back but also keep the aerobic exercise up.

    The main advice is don't rush back. A week sounds too soon to me.

  • I have a dodgy disc at the base of my spine, which, touch wood, has been OK for the last 18 months.

    However, it went on me about a fortnight before FLM 2001: I got it back in shape, and had no pain, after about three days. I then carried on running (I was tapering anyway), and ran the FLM.

    My legs were in agony by about 20 miles, and I could barely move by the end. Four days afterwards, I went to see my physio because my legs were still so painful.

    And she then explained to me that the problem was my back, and I was just experiencing reflected pain in my legs. She wasn't too impressed when I told her that it had gone a fortnight before the marathon, and that I'd run anyway.

    So I would suggest, go see a physio, and see what they have to say.

  • Fat Neck, if it just a nagging low back pain and doesn't radiate down past your buttocks, staying mobile is the best thing you can do and it's fine to try running - although you should stop if running makes it worse.

    If it's bad enough to need painkillers, or interferes with your walking, or you've got full-blown sciatica, it's still good to stay mobile. Walk rather than run, get in the pool and swim (backstroke, ideally) or do aqua-aerobics, and if you don't already do McKenzie exercises then see a physio.

    Yoga, Pilates and other such flexibility exercises are well worth exploring.

    Happy running!

    Cheers, V-rap.
  • JezJez ✭✭✭
    Have had 2 operations for prolapsed discs, and have problems on and off as a result of it being generally knackered from years of rowing badly. Have spent many fun filled hours with the physio working on core stability and back strengthening exercises. Am find that running does not make my back worse, and usually if it is sore and aching when I start it wears off as I warm up more.

    Don't just rest up, find out what is wrong with your back - It could be that specific exercises will improve the situation and mean that running is fine.

    Have tried physio, chiropractic, osteopath. Best advice I have is find a good physio and work with them - within a few sessions they'll let you know what the cause of the problem is and how best to recover/overcome it.
  • Slipped disc 18 months ago and have on / off back pain but Pilates has made a huge difference to my mobility and also my posture: which thhe physio said was partly responsible for thing s in the first place. I have an excellent physio and now follow his advice to the letter.
    Follow advice above and good luck.
  • Thanks guys. Im feeling better now but will take things steady for a while, swimming and bike rides look favourite in the short term. Quacks says he is happy for me to run if thats what gets me out of the arm chair.
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