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Thread: Strength training with low back pain while trying to gain weight page

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    Alfi56's Avatar
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    Strength training with low back pain while trying to gain weight

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    I am trying to restore weight because I am underweight, but my goal is to do so healthfully, and gain more muscle mass and minimize fat gain through strength training. I have been doing pilates for my core daily for about an hour a day (moves like the bicycle, boat pose, etc), plus exercises with weights (I follow the livestrong woman toneitup videos). However, recently my lower back has been hurting, even though I think I am doing pilates with proper form. I also have tendonitis, so my arms have been hurting due to using weights.
    The equipment I have are weights, and an exercise ball. I don't have access to a gym. Since I am still underweight, I don't have the strength for vigorous exercise or heavy lifting. Is there any other form of exercise that will help me build muscle but not hurt my back? It's stressful to have to gain weight when I'm not working out.

    Also, I did pilates and weights daily, but is this necessary, or should I alternate days or follow some other strength training schedule while gaining weight?

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    I would think if you have lower back pain, you aren't using proper form for the pilates, either that or extremely tight leg muscles are putting a strain on your back. Are you doing much for stretching?
    Check out the Primal Blueprint Fitness e-book - you can download it free from the MDA site.

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    How are you eating? I've found that keeping strict paleo/primal to avoid all those dietary inflammatories has been critical to overcoming chronic back and knee pain. In the absence of some specific structural diagnosis, it's far more important than exercise in my experience.

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    Do you have access to a Roman Chair? I use that whenever I go to the gym and it really helps alleviate any lower back pain for me.

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    I've been stretching thinking it would help the back pain, but I might have overstreched my muscles because it hurts when I do. I've been eating totally healthy, having enough protein daily and I usually have salmon/fish several times a week for the omegas.

    I took a look at the PBF guide, but I'm not sure about the WOW days where you lift heavy with my current back pain. is there another way to build strength?
    Also, I was strength training daily but is it actually better to skip days?

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    Deadlift.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Anthony View Post
    Deadlift.

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    +1. The only way your back is going to heal/repair itself is if you repeatedly put it through a full-range of motion. You have to provide the stimulus. That was one of the take-aways from this inspiring story: Starting Strength

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alfi56 View Post

    I took a look at the PBF guide, but I'm not sure about the WOW days where you lift heavy with my current back pain. is there another way to build strength?
    Also, I was strength training daily but is it actually better to skip days?
    If you do a beginners program like Stronglifts you take a rest day in between lift days. So you would lift on M/W/F. Your muscles do need rest to grow. Also, I second doing deadlifts.

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    Good book to start with here Foundation: Redefine Your Core, Conquer Back Pain, and Move with Confidence: Eric Goodman, Peter Park, Lance Armstrong: 9781609611002: Amazon.com: Books

    The book is a good set of 4-8 exercises to re-engage the posterior chain. Once you got that working for you add in the deadlift.

    If that isn't doing the trick you better find a chiropractor.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Anthony View Post
    Deadlift.

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    Definitely deadlift. I've got lower back issues as well, deadlifts and stretching relieve the pain completely.

    Trunk rotation, grok squat, hanging from a pull up bar and various hamstring stretches are my stretch routine. Don't underestimate the effect tight hams have on your lower back.

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