Early winter here in NW Montana....BUT!

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Glacier Glide
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Early winter here in NW Montana....BUT!

Post by Glacier Glide » Tue Nov 07, 2017 1:42 pm

Ruptured my L4-5 disc two weekends ago. Saw neurologist yesterday. Said it was probably just a weakness from 64+ years of activity that gave out. Other than that the MRI showed that my back was better than a lot of 30 year old patients that they see. I have a dull ache in the upper left quad muscle and some minor lower back stiffness. No real pain at this point and no numbness in the left leg, but I am still on a minor dose of prednisone. No surgery recommended - going to see a physical therapist to get some ideas on rehab and strengthening.
The Doc said definitely no running for at least a month and with icy roads I think I will retire the roller skis for the year :roll: He said start walking and increase distance when comfortable and try skiing when my confidence level was there.

With the Birkie three months away I am thinking it might be doable. After last years weather fiasco I really do not want to miss another one. I have been thinking that I would switch to Classic from Skating after I turned 65, but maybe this is the year to do it. If I skied like Martin Johnsrud Sundby with very little upper body twist/rotation it might work (but I am knot quite there yet!). I am thinking that Classic might be easier on the back and worst case scenario I could just tour the race to finish.

I am sure some of our board members have dealt with same problem since a good deal of us seem to be "old farts". I would be interested to hear about recovery times, exercise regimes and if my thinking on concentrating on Classic makes sense.

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Re: Early winter here in NW Montana....BUT!

Post by dcpattie » Tue Nov 07, 2017 5:53 pm

I love the attitude Jeff! Your spirit will certainly help your recovery.

During times of injury, I've always incorporated nordic walking as a low impact way to keep fit. Throughout the 19th century, long distance runners would do most of their training by simply walking and they were running 3hrs flat for ~ 40k races (ultra marathoning during this period was often termed "pedestrianism"). My point is you can keep quite fit while your back heals by simply walking and the nordic poles only add to the cardio benefit.
Dave in Nordic Virginia

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Magnus Johansson
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Re: Early winter here in NW Montana....BUT!

Post by Magnus Johansson » Wed Nov 08, 2017 1:47 am

Hey, Jeff! My experience is that classic style cross-country skiing is actually harder on the back than skate skiing. Maybe that depends on the back problems in question. However, I agree with Dave that Nordic walking and even light pole running is very good for the back.

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Re: Early winter here in NW Montana....BUT!

Post by Neuro » Wed Nov 08, 2017 1:55 am

Recently had the same although more severe, needing surgery. Both doctor and physio recommended against classic skiing, skating only at first. And first meant 2 months IIRC. Just walking every day before that. The risk of a new rupture in the same place is very high. So 3 months in your case must surely be fine. Just remember to do exercises for the piriformis muscle that's likely the source of your butt ache. Check Youtube. I was not told specifically of this so it took a long time to recover.

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Re: Early winter here in NW Montana....BUT!

Post by Burgesse » Wed Nov 08, 2017 7:27 am

As one of the older old farts here, I also find skating easier than classic on my bad low back. I’ve debated about switching to classic for the Birkie because of the possibility of just walking on skis but so far skating has worked ok. I haven’t run since the TWin Cities 10 miler and my back is better than usual - still sore. I’m lucky that my herniated discs don’t involve nerve pressure. When I did have severe low back issues at L5-S1 I found walking more painful than jogging. So, I’d say try what works best for you. It’s very clear that being in good shape makes everything heal faster. Good luck.

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Re: Early winter here in NW Montana....BUT!

Post by MN Hoser » Thu Nov 09, 2017 8:48 pm

I too find find skate easier on my back than skate but I don't have experience wiht a ruptured disc. All my back problems have been muscular, so developing my stomach muscles have helped.


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