Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Toward a Back Pain Solution: Core workouts with Dahlia

My sleep breakthrough has persisted a few weeks now, and I am sleeping unassisted by anything except a pretty boring book and my snoring little pit bull by my head. 

On a related note, though my insomnia much predates my lower back pain, the latter has been a persistent problem since I moved to this area 7 years ago and made a series of really bad mattress decisions. Fortunately, this back pain improves with activity and does not affect dog walking or hiking--but I have long wished I knew someone who could tell me what was wrong with my back and what mattress would fix it. The mattress salesmen who hover over you and make suggestive remarks while you're trying to decide, then tell you that miraculously the very mattress you're testing has been reduced to 50% off TODAY ONLY BLOWOUT SALE ACT NOW, somehow I don't think have my best interests at heart. 

Well I finally stumbled upon the website What an exhaustive, unbiased resource for exasperated mattress shoppers! Empowered to make an informed mattress decision, with no sleazy salesmen  leering over my shoulder, I finally decided on a firm latex mattress from Flexus Mattress Company, which was far below retail price. When I sleep with pillows under my chest and knees--and with Dahlia by my head--I am finding that I not only do so with no pharmaceuticals but with a minimum of back pain.

Though a good mattress is key, I am well aware that it is not the only factor in reducing back pain. 

As Dahlia knows, having a strong core is also a huge factor. 

An exercise ball is a great way to work the abdominal and lower back muscles because it increases your back's range of motion, and the bouncy surface reduces the chance of injury.  You can find some great core strengthening exercises here and here .

And I find that having a fitness buddy can really add focus and motivation to my workouts. Not to mention an additional level of challenge!
A 20-minute core workout, coupled with some puppy bonding time and followed by an ice pack to accelerate lower back healing, could I think become a new evening routine!

I think Dahlia's on board. 

How do YOU enhance your workouts?


  1. Sometimes I go out on walks. :P If its not snowing. Or raining. Or hailing. Or freezing. Does that count?

  2. Dogs, right? They are so good.


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