Living with this injury for the past five months is taking its toll on me. There are good days and bad days.
A good day is simply a polite way of saying that the day has been tolerable. Since I haven’t had a single pain-free minute since herniating my disc, a good day is typically one in which the pain is just there instead of raging. These days are occasionally productive, or as productive as I can manage. My mood and attitude are more positive and hopeful on these days. But a good day is still a day with pain and fatigue and frustration.
Today has not been a good day. On a bad day like today, the pain is too strong to ignore. It screams at me. The electrical currents running down both legs are on fire. The numbness in my left foot and calf feels worse. My back aches and trembles; my hands and arms shake. So cold…it feels like I will never be warm. The eyelids are heavy, but I have done almost nothing all day.
This morning I went to the gym for the first time in a week. I had been instructed to take the time off in order to properly assess a change in my care. That change came to an end yesterday after determining that it was having a negative impact on the pain in my back. So, with permission and instruction to take it easy, I went back to the gym today. It was the shortest work out I’ve ever done, like 15 minutes!
Goblet squats were up first. 30 pounds. During the first set I realized that I was glad my coach had instructed me to decrease the weights by 10 pounds. The squats didn’t hurt, but I could tell that a heavier weight would have caused problems. Single leg calf raises were fine, although as always the left calf is weaker and unable to “raise” as well as the right. The only exercises left on my program were leg curls and single leg leg extensions, and both were pain-inducing from the get-go. After a few reps of each, I called it quits, because I’ve been told to stop if something is causing pain. And most of the time, I listen.
Of course, it is easy to listen to that type of advice when the alternative is potentially damaging. This kind of pain is not the sort one should push through in a work out. A relatively easy, 15 minute work out has left me in extreme pain for the rest of the day. This is a bad day.