I am a 25 years old Computer Scientist who loves working out and spending time with my dog and my girlfriend. I am also working as a programmer at a fairly big company which is where I get an outlet for my problem-solving skills. As for sports, I have done several different kinds of martial arts and mountain climbing.
A big passion of mine is also computer games, which is originally why I got into Computer Science to start with, as I aspired to be a game programmer.
As you can hear, I have a very active lifestyle, but I also sit down quite a bit, causing great stress to my back.
What Kind of Problem Did You Suffer From and When Did It Start
I have had 3 spinal disk herniations over a course of 8 years. It first started in high school after a work-out when I sat down at my computer and I felt something was wrong with my back. I had always heard of people talking about back problems and had a really hard time relating, but that was when I finally learned what an impact back problems can have on your life.
Do You Know What Caused It?
It was probably a combination of overloading my back in my workouts and sitting down at the computer straight after my workouts and sitting down most of the day. Also overlooking the fact that I had pain in my back because I didn’t want to miss out on any work-outs due to my fixation of keeping my body the way I wanted it to look.
My superficial mindset got the better of me.
In What Way Did this Problem Affect Your Life?
It pretty much put my physical exercise to a halt for a long time. This did not only affect my physical health but also my mental health. It really took a toll on my mind not being able to work out and my grades suffered and I felt depressed most of the time.
What Motivated You to get the Help You Needed to Deal with Your Problem?
Doctors instructions as well as a will to simply be able to feel better about my body and not being in pain all the time. I wanted to stay fit, get back to the gym and to play with my dog and (hopefully) my future kids. I really wanted to not have to rely on my back pain when me and my group went out mountain climbing or if I wanted to test out another form of exercise, like for example CrossFit.
Trial and Error, What Did Wot Work for You and What was the Final Thing That Helped You?
Ugh, let me tell you, one of my biggest mistakes during my search for a miracle cure was going to a chiropractor. I get that this solution might work for some people, but for someone with spinal disc herniation I strongly advice going alternate routes. The short sessions filled with pure ligament manipulation really took a toll on my body.
I only visited the chiropractor once, which was painful enough as it was, but the next day I couldn’t even get out of bed due to my back being WAY worse than what it had been the day before. I don’t know if this was just my personal experience since I haven’t spoken with other hernia patients about their experience with chiropractors, but for me, it did more harm than good and I crossed that off my list.
The countless hours I have spent on the massage table and in massage chairs has without a doubt benefited my rehab process. I liked the soft touch and “non-manipulatory” aspect of it, getting massages alongside my physical therapy exercises was more of a step-by-step rehab process which I felt was required due to the impact of a spinal disc herniation, there really is no miracle fix.
It’s a marathon and not a sprint, and massages made that marathon way more bearable and I recommend them to anyone going through the same rehabilitation process. Also massaging your hamstrings releases a lot of tension from your back. But speak to your physical therapist on what he/she recommends specifically for you.
I feel like physical therapy and the stretching and muscle exercises I learned from these meetings were one of the most vital things in my rehab. The muscle training exercises helped increase my core strength, giving me some compensation for the loss of movement in my back, allowing me to slowly but surely get back to sports.
The stretches that I learned really help target the affected areas and get a good stretch in some of the deeper muscles that traditional stretches can’t really get to.
Naprapathy really was different for me than chiropractics in the sense that this was more slow-paced and more suited for someone in chronic pain. It was long sessions with massage and only a few manipulations. I did two sessions that seriously had me feeling better after each time. I recommend anyone who is curious to try naprapathy to do it, it is less stressful on the body and can include many treatments instead of just a few “corrections” in chiropractics.
How Is Your Life Now?
I still have some pain, but it has been greatly reduced by sitting down in moderation and working at a stand-up desk as well as taking care of my back and being thoughtful of it when working out. I always stretch after each work-out and listen to my body. All in all my life is good, but it has been a long journey and the main goal right now is to avoid getting another episode of not being able to work out. Everything with moderation people, get some massages here and there and enjoy yourselves.