Anyone have a back injury that felt better after dropping weight?

About 5 years ago, I hurt my back pretty bad. Herniated 4 discs had surgery on one(L5S1). Since the injury ive had sciatica and back pain that has made me completely unmotivated to workout. Not that working out makes it worse, I just think I am afraid of doing it again. Ill get back into it for a few months now and then but dont stick to it for various reasons.

Ive always been into lifting and was at my peak when I did it(260 ~20% bf) but now im 330lbs. Ive seen people who have had bulged discs(not herniated) get back within 6 months and lifting the same and I am like what is different? Why cant I?

I am just curious/looking for, lets say, hope. Any one have a similar injury that after they lost weight their back felt better doing every day stuff or working out?

My overall goal is 220 or less but frankly at this point I'd settle to be 260 again.

Replies

  • lorrpb
    lorrpb Posts: 11,465 Member
    Not an injury, but pain and arthritis. Losing weight (150)and lifting weights, including core strengthening, eliminated 90% of the pain.
  • amiskell28
    amiskell28 Posts: 23 Member
    Yes, losing the weight will help with the pain. It may not go away completely, but it WILL help. Also, maybe focus on less intense work outs for now. Simply walking, even slowly, is better than doing nothing. Good luck to you!!
  • seltzermint555
    seltzermint555 Posts: 10,742 Member
    edited March 2019
    Definitely yes. Not an injury that was specified or any type of surgery, though. I just pulled something (?) in my back while bowling at age 26 and for years I would have horrible episodes of back pain and difficult mobility for several days, probably 5-6 times per year. I know it was always stemming from that one injury because it was that same pain. It was definitely at the worst around 29-30 when I hit my heaviest weight. I started losing a lot of weight at 35 and saw the back "episodes" lessen dramatically...now I'm 42 and for the past six years or so, I have those episodes once per year or less and they are much shorter.

    While it's not directly related, I also had migraines very frequently with residual pain that lasted for 2-3 days and tons of other symptoms (light sensitivity, vision problems, nausea) they happened several times per year and MUCH more when I was at my heaviest. I haven't had a real migraine since I lost my first 50 lb of a 130+ weight loss and I believe it is related. The worst I've had in years is a similar slight pain that felt like the beginning of a migraine, and that's been like twice in 7 years. I know sometimes those can lessen with age and hormones but the dropoff was too drastic for me to believe that it wasn't related to weight loss.
  • WombatHat42
    WombatHat42 Posts: 192 Member
    Definitely yes. Not an injury that was specified or any type of surgery, though. I just pulled something (?) in my back while bowling at age 26 and for years I would have horrible episodes of back pain and difficult mobility for several days, probably 5-6 times per year. I know it was always stemming from that one injury because it was that same pain. It was definitely at the worst around 29-30 when I hit my heaviest weight. I started losing a lot of weight at 35 and saw the back "episodes" lessen dramatically...now I'm 42 and for the past six years or so, I have those episodes once per year or less and they are much shorter.

    This actually sounds like a small herniation to me, though I am not a doctor. Pulled muscles dont usually last that long(unless you tore something and it didnt heal properly)
  • TanyaHooton
    TanyaHooton Posts: 240 Member
    Yes, I had sciatica and also trouble with my L2-L3 on my right side which caused my hip flexor to ache and my thigh to burn. I had a lot going on (kidney issues too), so I started seeing a chiropractor and got a referral for physical therapy. Those helped, but temporarily; the pain always came back.

    Now that I've lost 30 lbs, the sciatica is gone and the L2-L3 trouble is very mild when it happens. I store a lot of weight in the front and center of my belly and it was pulling my lower back down so that my pelvis was tilted forward at the top. Now I am stronger and carry less weight so I can put it back into place properly, and I can enjoy walking around the city for a day without being in agony for every step.
  • seltzermint555
    seltzermint555 Posts: 10,742 Member
    hawk057 wrote: »
    Definitely yes. Not an injury that was specified or any type of surgery, though. I just pulled something (?) in my back while bowling at age 26 and for years I would have horrible episodes of back pain and difficult mobility for several days, probably 5-6 times per year. I know it was always stemming from that one injury because it was that same pain. It was definitely at the worst around 29-30 when I hit my heaviest weight. I started losing a lot of weight at 35 and saw the back "episodes" lessen dramatically...now I'm 42 and for the past six years or so, I have those episodes once per year or less and they are much shorter.

    This actually sounds like a small herniation to me, though I am not a doctor. Pulled muscles dont usually last that long(unless you tore something and it didnt heal properly)

    Yeah maybe so...I have no idea! I assume it was an injury worse than a pulled muscle but it didn't seem serious enough to seek medical treatment to me at the time...and to be honest, at age 26 and about 275 lb I avoided doctors because of the cost (I wasn't insured) and always being fat-shamed by them.
  • GuyanaGold21
    GuyanaGold21 Posts: 53 Member
    edited April 2019
    While it's not directly related, I also had migraines very frequently with residual pain that lasted for 2-3 days and tons of other symptoms (light sensitivity, vision problems, nausea) they happened several times per year and MUCH more when I was at my heaviest. I haven't had a real migraine since I lost my first 50 lb of a 130+ weight loss and I believe it is related. The worst I've had in years is a similar slight pain that felt like the beginning of a migraine, and that's been like twice in 7 years. I know sometimes those can lessen with age and hormones but the dropoff was too drastic for me to believe that it wasn't related to weight loss.

    I have had migraines (progressed to chronic migraines) for over 50 years (yikes!) and I've been all over the place as far as weight goes (normal, overweight, obese). You have given me another reason to keep the weight loss going if it may help with the migraines and all that goes with them. Thank you so much!!!!

    AND I am going to the orthopedist in May to see if I have a disc problem. My chiropractor thinks I may, and it certainly feels like a nerve issue versus muscle. If I twist or bend wrong, I am in agony for months.

  • grace42c
    grace42c Posts: 71 Member
    Yes, I have degenerative spine. 5 bad discs and a stenosis. Only lost 10 pounds (I am very small to start with) but feel much better. I could not sit down for 5 months from the pain. Started with 10 min yoga and worked up from there. I do yoga and PT exercises before my daily workout. PT is all core and back strength. To get here has taken 2.5 years. Be patient
  • GummiMundi
    GummiMundi Posts: 396 Member
    Not exactly an injury, but I have suffered from lumbar pain for most of my life. Losing weight is helping easing it A LOT!
  • suzettedees
    suzettedees Posts: 85 Member
    hawk057 wrote: »
    About 5 years ago, I hurt my back pretty bad. Herniated 4 discs had surgery on one(L5S1). Since the injury ive had sciatica and back pain that has made me completely unmotivated to workout. Not that working out makes it worse, I just think I am afraid of doing it again. Ill get back into it for a few months now and then but dont stick to it for various reasons.

    Ive always been into lifting and was at my peak when I did it(260 ~20% bf) but now im 330lbs. Ive seen people who have had bulged discs(not herniated) get back within 6 months and lifting the same and I am like what is different? Why cant I?

    I am just curious/looking for, lets say, hope. Any one have a similar injury that after they lost weight their back felt better doing every day stuff or working out?

    My overall goal is 220 or less but frankly at this point I'd settle to be 260 again.
    hawk057 wrote: »
    About 5 years ago, I hurt my back pretty bad. Herniated 4 discs had surgery on one(L5S1). Since the injury ive had sciatica and back pain that has made me completely unmotivated to workout. Not that working out makes it worse, I just think I am afraid of doing it again. Ill get back into it for a few months now and then but dont stick to it for various reasons.

    Ive always been into lifting and was at my peak when I did it(260 ~20% bf) but now im 330lbs. Ive seen people who have had bulged discs(not herniated) get back within 6 months and lifting the same and I am like what is different? Why cant I?

    I am just curious/looking for, lets say, hope. Any one have a similar injury that after they lost weight their back felt better doing every day stuff or working out?

    My overall goal is 220 or less but frankly at this point I'd settle to be 260 again.

    I was in a car accident (2013), herniated l4/5 and impacted my si joint. I live with chronic pain. I gained weight after my accident (35 pounds) and felt horrible every day. I spent 2 1/2 years going through various treatments that only gave very short term results. So I joined a gym. I started working out 5 days a week and after a few months enlisted the support of a trainer who also had back issues. My workouts gave me some pain free time (not all of them but, most). I changed my diet and have lost 51 pounds. I now practice Muay Thai twice a week, still train with my trainer and lift 3-4 days a week with another day spent specifically on core.
    I still have pain but, a much better quality of life. When my back hurts, I go exercise. It was very difficult at first and now I look forward to my gym time.