I injured my back badly about a month ago. It was through over working it while doing some yard work, house work, and making beer. By “badly” I mean, “couldn’t stand up straight for 5 days” kind of thing. This, unfortunately, isn’t a new thing for me. I’ve come up with a new metaphor for why this keeps happening to me: it’s the difference between a green branch and a dry branch.
If you bend a green branch way back on itself, it will slowly flex until it starts to deform and then maybe splinter a bit. When you let go, it’ll spring back most of the way to its original shape, although a bit worse for wear.
If you bend a dry branch back on itself, it will again slowly flex until [SNAP], it breaks in half.
This is what my lower back muscles are like. Not as much room for error as a younger person’s, or as a similarly-aged person who doesn’t have my history of back surgeries. If I don’t immediately recognize when I’ve pushed too far, and stop, I’m down for the count for several weeks.
Thankfully, I’m on the back end of that several weeks. I went to our weekly Yoga class last night and it didn’t kill me (and I didn’t have to wuss out of a lot of the poses). I ran for the first time in a month on Sunday and that didn’t kill me either. I’m back on the “ease into it” plan with respect to my aerobic sports, but I’m trying to do some yoga every day. Hopefully I’ll not devastate myself again for another couple years.