Preventing and Treating Gym-born Back Pain

One of the most common gym injuries is back pain. Whether you’re going hard on the elliptical or lifting some heavy weights, it can get you. But don’t let the fear of potentially hurting yourself keep you from working out, instead educate yourself on how you can prevent and treat back pain.

 

Preventing Back Pain

Working out, or keeping your back muscles strong, is actually one of the best things you can do to prevent back injuries. Back pain is more common in people who are not fit, so start exercising today. Of course, that doesn’t mean heavy lifting. Heavy lifting is a big cause of back injuries, so make sure you work your way up to it. Take it easy and listen to your body, and follow these tips to prevent back pain.

  • Core Exercise. As mentioned, working out can help you build up strong muscles in your back to prevent injury. Participate in some low-impact exercise like walking or ellipticals to increase blood flow to the spine.
  • A poor posture can lead to back pain. It’s important to pay attention to your posture throughout the day, especially if you work a desk job. Try to get up every hour or so and walk around. You can also set a timer on your phone to check your posture every once in a while throughout the day.
  • Lifting weights is not a bad thing and can increase the strength in your back muscles. But it’s important to know the proper way to lift weights to avoid injury. If you’re unsure of proper weight-lifting technique, ask the trainer at your gym for some pointers.
  • Overall health. Take care of your body and improve your overall physical health. Just as exercising is important, so are eating right and drinking plenty of water. Getting the nutrients that your body needs will help build up your strength too.

 

Treating Back Pain

Even if we do our best to prevent back injuries, they can still happen. Here’s a list of ways you can treat your back pain.

  • See a doctor. If your pain is severe enough that it’s difficult for you to walk, then it is best to get a professional diagnosis on the problem. A doctor is going to be the best source for a treatment plan to get your back healed quickly.
  • Rest is going to be your best friend when you have back pain (or worst enemy if you don’t like sitting still). Don’t keep working out or you’ll risk injuring your back further. Give your back a few days to rest and then start out slow, stopping if you feel any pain during exercise.
  • Eat anti-inflammatory foods with plenty of fish oils. Avoid the grains and let your body focus it’s innate healing power on the real injury.
  • Massage therapist. See a massage therapist or chiropractor to help work out any aches in the muscles or to realign your back. They can also give you some good recommendations for at home treatment.
  • Icing your back can reduce pain, swelling and spasming, especially during the first 24 hours of injury. Apply ice for only 20 minutes at a time, and then wait an hour before reapplying.

If you’re ever in doubt about a back injury, the best practice is always to consult your doctor before trying to self-diagnose or treat. Take these tips into consideration and do what you can to prevent back pain from enjoying everyday life.

 

Community Health – Why You Should Become More Involved

community

As a busy individual, you may face the challenge of incorporating a varied workout schedule into your daily routines. If you work a full-time job, your duties are often called to the computer or office space where you spend 40 hours each week focusing on the tasks associated with your full-time career.

 

Additionally, those who have families or significant others may need to spend time focusing on caring for their children or preparing them for school and extracurricular activities. After a long day at work, it’s easy to relax with your spouse and prepare a nice family meal during your after-work hours. For many, adding in additional time after work to be spent at the gym can pose a huge challenge, and can almost seem impossible.

 

Incorporating a schedule

 

As the new school year takes full effect in the coming weeks, it’s important that families design a schedule that fits all of their needs. As a busy adult, it’s critical for your health to include time when you can be active and spend time working on your physical fitness. Allowing your body ample time to increase your heart rate, stretch, run, and lift weights can increase your overall well-being. Additionally, it helps to regulate your mood and ability to think clearly while spending time at work.

 

Consider designing a schedule that includes workouts before you are obligated to taking your children to school or leisurely activities. Become more involved within your community, and collaborate with neighbors about working out. If you live in a community with other active, working adults, it’s a great opportunity to work together to promote wellness within your neighborhood. Designating meet-up times to jog the neighborhood in the morning, or work out at a local park can help to increase the amount of time you are active during the day.

 

Take Advantage of Work Benefits

 

If you work at an office job, ask your employer if they allow for reduced price gym memberships among their employees. Many employers lack in this area, but initiating the idea might spark an idea that could benefit you, as well as your co-workers.

 

Is there a local gym in your area? Ask your employer if they would be willing to set aside time from work for employees to spend an allotted amount of time working out together. Not only would this promote wellness within your workplace, but it would increase team bonding and a sense of team unity among those you work with.

 

The Reality

 

On average, eighty percent of American workers do not get the recommended amount of time spent working out, as suggested. Time spent working out and regulating a healthy body can lead to a reduced risk of heart disease, stroke, and other things such as anxiety, and depression. Overall, most are aware of the many positive benefits associated with working out while working a full time position, but do not act upon it simply because they are too busy.

 

What Can You Do?

 

As previously mentioned, set a schedule for this coming fall and stick to it. In your schedule, set a small amount of time each day where you can designate your time to becoming more active and fit. Additionally, ensure you are eating the proper foods, and avoiding sugary and fatty foods that can alter the positive effects of working out.

 

Additionally, encourage your employer to set regulations or guidelines for health standards within your company. Suggest partnerships with local gyms, or programs within the  company that will help to keep employees safe, and live a healthy lifestyle. If an employer is forcing health conscious habits onto its employees, they will see the mental, and physical health benefits associated with the new guidelines.