If you’ve been following along with my October Project, you’re probably well aware that I took a week off last week due to injury. My back isn’t 100% yet but it is healing and only seems to bother me when I spend a few hours lying in bed. Yesterday I stepped back into the gym and I was a bit concerned about how my back would change the way I work out.
The very first exercise I did was a low bar back squat. I did a warm up with an empty bar and was a bit surprised that it was completely pain free. As I increased weight, the only way that I could duplicate an uncomfortable feeling in my back was if I arched my spine and flexed my back, hard. Careful not to over-flex, I began adding more and more weight. I stopped at 185 pounds for 8 reps (3 sets) and felt pretty good.
I tried a couple of sets of front squats and those were also pain free (they did begin to fatigue my lower back). Next up was the leg press, which was the exercise I was most concerned about. Due to the angle of the seat (it only adjusts to two positions) it has a tendency to drive my lower back into the back rest.
I didn’t have much trouble until I hit my working weight of 475 pounds. It felt a bit uncomfortable on my lower back but didn’t cause any pain. I progressed with my program from there (mixing it up a little from my usual leg workout) and felt pretty good when I finished up with the weights.
I ended the session on the elliptical and had to cut it short. My lower back began to ache after about 10 minutes so I decreased the resistance and wrapped it up at the 15 minute mark.
Missing a week took its toll on me. I left the gym feeling queezy and wiped out. It was really good to be back in the gym though. I severely missed being active and throwing weight around in the gym. It was also nice to see a bunch of exercise calories back in my MyFitnessPal log, for a change.
Looking at my photos, I think I may have gained a little weight back during my week of inactivity but I still feel good. I went through some of my ‘Fat Clothes’ and got rid of anything that was comically big on me. A tried on some stuff that hasn’t fit in a while and I was surprised that I can now wear it again.
Due to the missed week, and how good I feel, I almost don’t want to check my weight at the end of the month. The stress of checking the scale every few days is long gone and I kind of like it. I still have my days where I feel fat but they don’t seem to be bothering me as often as they used to. I have a very long way to go but at this point I’m just enjoying the ride.