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Lifting Weights through Sciatica

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by jmhudak17, Oct 24, 2018.

  1. jmhudak17

    jmhudak17 Newcomer

    Hey everyone,

    I've been dealing with sciatica since July 2017 (burning, tingling, pain, sensations in my left leg and foot, occasionally in my lower back), in what I originally thought was caused by a weightlifting accident (a failed squat where I had the safety bars too low and had to bend forward excessively to put the bar down onto them). The pain has always been on the mild side (never agonizing), but it especially seems to flare up when I'm squatting or deadlifting.

    Since then, it's been a flurry of doctor visits (to a chiropractor and orthopedist, as well as two MRIs: one showing nothing maybe two months after symptoms started, and another showing two bulging discs with stenosis a few months ago), but there hasn't been a whole lot of healing.

    I've read through two of Dr. Sarno's books now over the last few weeks, and I feel as though a lot of the personality descriptions match well. I've been pretty distraught about my injury since it happened, since powerlifting is one of my favorite things to do (I've done one competition before and was training for a second when the sciatica started).

    Since learning more about TMS, I've started to try to lift heavy weights again (because not being able to do what I want to do physically is what worries me so much), but I sometimes worry that I'm making things worse; symptoms seem to be changing a bit, with the tingling in my left foot overtaking the others as being the most prominent).

    Has anyone had any experience with pushing through pain thought to be caused by TMS? I feel it would be especially useful if it were someone who had done so lifting squatting or deadlifting, as it would put me at ease to know that others had pushed through the same thing I'm dealing with and have come out alright (I worry about nerve damage causing this to get worse).

    Thanks in advance.
  2. savasana

    savasana Peer Supporter

    I had crippling lower back and sciatic pain. The sciatic pain was probably the worst physical TMS symptom I ever had. I remmeber telling people at the time that I wanted someone to hit me over the head with a frying pain so I could just be knocked out and not have to feel anymore (Wow, what a telling statement). It throbbed constantly for weeks.

    I was training for my first (and only) amateur boxing match at the time. As you can imagine, boxing training is an incredibly high intensity workout and your legs and back are very important in the movements you make. I forced myself to go to my training sessions even when I could barely take the pain, sometimes I would cry through it. I forced myself to go on the stairmaster for 15 minutes at a time at the highest intensity it had and I sometimes noticed a sharp decline in pain by the end of the 15 minutes (because I was telling the TMS, screw you!) I remember when I first stepped into the ring for my bout, the pain completely disappeared and never came back after that (the back pain remains but the sciatic pain vanished). I was forced to truly be "in the moment" which is why the pain went away. It was literally a do or die/fight or flight situation! It was purely the stress of the event and the anticipation that gave me the pain, wanted me to give up and give in.

    Keep at it. You're doing great.
    Free of Fear and Tennis Tom like this.
  3. KevinB

    KevinB Well known member

    Yes, keep lifting and know that you’re ok.

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