August 2016 Nows
Some people actually pay attention to what I do.
That was brought home last night when I attended a friend’s 50th birthday celebration and had several people thank me for inspiring them. That’s humbling.
Seriously, that’s humbling shit right there.
Honestly, I haven’t felt particularly inspiring or inspired in the past few months. If you’ve paid attention, you probably figured that out. See, it’s easy to be excited, inspired and motivated when life is going your way. When all cylinders are firing it’s exceptionally easy to jump into the world every day and say, “THIS IS GOING TO BE GREAT!” and actually believe it. But when you wake up every morning in pain, and that pain gets worse as the day goes on, well, that’s a whole other story, and that has been my life since the end of February.
What I thought had been going on was a recurrence of a back issue I’d had about six years ago. What was going on then was that I’d strained something due to some mobility issues and that set off spasms in my mid-thoracic region that simply would not let up. After physical therapy, some facet injections and taking it easy for a little while the spasms went away and life was grand. This time the pain was in the same spot, and it seemed to just be the same deal. It’s not.
This time it’s basically age and wear and tear catching up with me. I’ve got mild degenerative arthritis in my L5 region with stenosis – what this amounts to is a narrowing of the space my spinal cord and nerves pass through in my spine in my lower back. That is producing nerve problems that have triggered the spasms in my thoracic region (which is apparently where I will feel anything that’s not right with my back forever). What’s different this time is that getting the spasms to relax isn’t the priority. The priority is making sure the arthritis doesn’t progress and make the stenosis worse.
So, what does this mean for me as a fitness guy? Well, it means, and no offense intended folks, that my focus is on me and my health for a while. I still care about the rest of you, and I still want to help you (and I’ll probably figure out a way to use what I learn in caring for myself to help y’all out), but this is serious. It’s also incredibly difficult for me to spend time writing because when I sit is when the pain overtakes me, and while I’ve figured out how to do my 9-5 job standing, that’s exhausting and doesn’t leave me enough energy to do much in the way of optional computer work.
And until further notice heavy lifting and high impact exercise is out of the question. I’ve said all along I’m not going to recommend anything to you folks that I won’t do myself. Part of what I have to figure out is how to remain active and fit without causing myself more pain and more injury.