Hi guys...not been about for a while but am currently on a bad flare of pain that has once again led to a few questions for me. My current flare up is particularly painful and is probably as bad as it has been since this started 4 years ago. I have remained active over this period and sometimes a flare can coincide with physical activity whilst other times it doesn't. Last Saturday I climbed Ben Nevis which is the highest mountain in the UK...about halfway into the climb I'm quite sure that I pretty much caught myself saying/thinking to myself that I felt good and that my back burner lower back/hamstring stiffness and pain was not bothering me at all. You can probably guess what happened next, over the next few minutes my back started tightening and my pain level slowly increased. I managed to climb and descend the mountain and felt Ok'ish. The following day my back felt ok but my left quad muscle was incredibly tight and stiff compared to the left one, this always seems to happen and felt really painful to apply any pressure....it almost feels like it has been overloaded with lactic acid. We drove home on the Monday (a long 12 hour car journey) with my leg still feeling the same but it wasn't actually until the Tuesday morning that the usual intense flare pattern of lower left sided back/buttock pain and a nerve pain type feeling into the left leg started...it has been ongoing with little sign of abating. What I never really seem to understand is that whilst I get pain that appears to be getting more intense and more frequent, I never seem to suffer from any loss of mobility or function. Even though I am in 9/10 pain at the moment I feel that physically I could go run no problem...it feels like it is purely the pain that would stop me. Outside of a flare I do feel stiff around the hamstring etc but am still able to stretch fine etc and I never ever seem to get a spasm reaching for something or bending over etc...its like the stiffness is just there but doesn't really restrict me. I think the TMS practioner I have seen places store by this as he states that if I did have an SI joint/structural problem he thinks that my mobility etc would have been compromised by now bearing in mind the length of time I have been dealing with this. From a TMS perspective if I did have to describe my pain and discomfort it does actually feel like a severe tightness and often a vice like feeling...I am no expert but I'm thinking that this could well be explained by the oxygen deprivation theory, it does seem interesting that the pain isn't accompanied by any reflex issues, loss of function or mobility or even any subjective let alone objective weakness. Something else that seems to make sense to me regarding the increasing pain level etc is the theory that once the nervous system becomes sensitised to the pain pathway the strategy becomes more effective and better and better at producing the pain. I can't help but feel if this is what is happening with me. a couple of weeks ago I went mountain hiking nearly every day for 5 days running with no flare ups at all but then all of a sudden I get a flare up which it appears I should be attributing to the Ben Nevis climb but is just doesn't make sense from a structural or even logical perspective...I have of course attempted to frame this all within an emotional explanation but nothing really seems to have jumped out as a possible explanation for the current flare up. I'm wondering if others have had this particular issue of pain and stiffness without really losing function or mobility...if I had to describe this better its like whilst subjectively I feel incredibly tight and stiff it doesn't objectively hold me back if i push through the pain. I am of course currently stuck in the typical fear pattern that strikes alongside a pain flare so if anybody can offer me any insight I may be missing I would be grateful. thanks for reading.