Sciatica

11 Oct

I’ve self-diagnosed myself with sciatica. Ok, ok, I know what you’re going to say, “You need to see a doctor!” But doctors are expensive (I spend more on healthcare now that I have health insurance than I did before… someone please explain that), and I”m poor. I DO have a chiropractor appointment on Monday, so don’t give me too hard of a time. Basically, I just want the chiropractor to tell me that I need massages. I’m pretty sure the sciatica issues are stemming from the GIANT knots that have invaded my back muscles. Rolling around on a tennis ball is fine, but I need a massage, and if my chiropractor recommends it, I only have to pay the co-pay.

Ok, so Sciatica. Here’s what I’ve learned.

Symptoms: The symptoms can be anything from a sharp pain to a numbing sensation. I’ve had all of those kinds of pain, and they go from from my lower back to my foot on the left side. It started as a tight hamstring, moved to a sore hamstring and now I have a sore hip and a numb foot. Since Sciatica tends to localize on one side, that’s how I came to the conclusion that it was the problem.

Causes: Sciatica indicates another problem, which is causing the sciatic nerve to be pinched. I’m guessing (and this is where I’ll get a professional opinion, I promise) that it’s due to the discomfort and knots I have in my lower back. I’ve always gotten knots in my back muscles pretty easily, but for the past few weeks they have been out of control. I’ve been doing everything to get rid of them, but it’s not working. I’m guessing that sitting on my butt at my desk job 8 hours a day is finally catching up with me.

In the meantime, here is what I’m doing to control my symptoms:

Yoga, obviously. Stretching really seems to help! After doing three yoga sessions last week, my pain was gone for a few days. However, I haven’t done any yoga since Sunday, and I’ve ran about 11 miles so I’m feeling the pain again. Last night I did a Google search for a good yoga routine to help with Sciatica and I found this:

Gotta love Fitsugar!

I did this routine last night, and then again before and after my run this morning. It’s just seven poses, and while last night I combined a flow into them, this morning I just held the poses for about 30 seconds each. I plan to try to hit a yoga class tonight, tomorrow morning and Saturday morning as well.

I also need to get back into making sure I get up from my desk every so often. I was doing very well for a while with that, but I’ve fallen out of the habit. So I will start standing when I answer my phone and getting up every 30 minutes to stretch/walk around.

Finally, I will work on strengthening my abdomen/lower back muscles. I’m really bad about neglecting those muscle groups when I do my workouts. I basically hate traditional ab workouts!

So, this morning, I started out my workout with a 30 minute treadmill run. I’ve been getting bored on the treadmill recently, so this morning I pulled out the big guns: Alias on Netflix!

Jennifer Garner’s body in that show is a huge motivator! I also switched up my speed a lot. I set the incline at 1.0, and then I alternated between a sprint for 45 seconds, a slow jog for 15 seconds and a walk for 15 seconds. I did that for about 2 miles and then walked at incline 10.0 for 2 minutes and ended with a 1 minute sprint followed by a 1 minute incline walk for the final mile. I finished 3 miles in 30 minutes and then I headed down to the weight room. I did my own abs/lower back routine which included lower back extensions with an 8 lb medicine ball, weighted side crunches, side leg lifts with a three pound medicine ball and then I finished with a 1 minute plank hold.

Question of the Day:
Do you watch Netflix on the treadmill? What’s your favorite thing to watch?

My favorite thing to watch on the treadmill is any show with a kick-ass female lead, like Alias or Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

 

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5 Responses to “Sciatica”

  1. laraste October 11, 2012 at 12:15 pm #

    Think you’ll be going straight from a chiropractor to massage? I hope that works for you, but typically chiropractors send you for imaging, which means big copays. I’d also urge you not to let them adjust you…I think it does more harm than good. Maybe you should chill out on the running for a minute and do some pilates to gently strengthen and balance your back and abs. You’ve got to give your body time and rest for it to heal itself now and then.

    • kristyshealthrevolution October 11, 2012 at 1:00 pm #

      I’ve actually heard really good things about this chiropractor, and she offers massage at her clinic, so I’m hoping the horror stories I’ve heard won’t happen here. I’m educated about the adjustment scam, so I won’t let them do anything I’m uncomfortable with. Thanks!

  2. Karuna October 11, 2012 at 12:50 pm #

    Sciatic pain is no joke.I get back pain a lot too.Even though I go to chiropractor and pain doctor,I get relief from doing Rodney Yees back yoga more.Also auyrvedic massages help too.Unfortunately I find I have to do yoga everyday,which is a pain,but it’s the only thing which is helping .good luck

    • kristyshealthrevolution October 11, 2012 at 1:01 pm #

      My yoga instructor also swears by regular yoga for relief from sciatic pain, so I’m yoga-ing it up. I’m going to order that DVD you suggested right away. I love Rodney Yee!

  3. BackatSquare0 (@BackAtSquare0) October 12, 2012 at 8:56 pm #

    It is maybe a good idea if it doesn’t go away after a bit to have it checked out. See what is causing the sciatica. Like mine is caused by SI joint issues.

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