On Monday around lunchtime, I got up to do some stretches and get some blood flowing. I started to rotate my hips when suddenly I felt a shot of pain in the back of my neck which cause my head to violently tilt forward (which I believe is called a spasm). From that point on, my neck was stiff with no range of motion. I could tilt my head down a little bit, but that was it.
I proceeded to try to massage myself and stretch in different ways to ease the pain or regain movement over the next hour, but to no avail. I tried to continue to do work afterward, but I felt even stiffer as the afternoon progressed and needed to lay down.
It wasn’t an unfamiliar feeling, but usually it happened if I was exerting myself in some way (like trying to do a somersault). Also, it usually subsided after a few hours or (at longest) over night. But I wasn’t even able to sleep that night.
Come the next day, I was in even more pain, now in my shoulders and left arm. I still wasn’t able to tilt my head back or side to side.
Fortunately, I was able to see my doctor that morning. I took a cab to the office and after a some probing and few quick X-rays, the verdict came: “I think you have a herniated disc.”
I am not a happy camper.
According to WebMD, there are these spacers in between the bones of our spine that act as shock absorbers. My doctor describes them as jelly donuts in that they’re hard on the outside and jelly-like on the inside. When it gets damaged in some way or goes out of place, it’s a herniated disc.
It can be caused by wear and tear or injury. And unfortunately, it can take a while to heal. For the next week or so, I need to just take my cocktail of drugs and go about my business. Without exerting myself. And afterward, who knows? The doc thinks it might warrant physical therapy in the future but that I’ll probably be okay.
Ironically, my last post was all about preventing injury. Another lesson learned. As my girlfriend points out, it’s all part of training, and therefore I won’t stop writing.
I just wish it hadn’t come so soon into CrossFit. Or at all.