Yes, you read that right and a well-known back pain phenomenon for the living office chairs! Hopefully, people with a naturally hollow lower back and long-term sitters will benefit from this info.
The cause is a shortened psoas (see photo) and this is a very common cause of back pain
Due to working conditions, I mainly sat on my backside for a month in the same apparently comfortable chair. I just wanted to get my work done and didn’t give myself time to run anymore, even though my body always asks for it. The result was a recurring lumbago (after a simple bend over) which this time was so intense that it took me 20 minutes, in tears of pain, to climb a flight of 13 steps with a completely blocked lower back. I was naked in the morning and could have called the ambulance to pick me up, but suddenly my phone was miles away, upstairs in another room. A recurring lumbago gets more intense every time. I have discovered the pain is high on the left in the psoas and you can’t reach that with massage or painful dry needling. Many chairs – including car seats – also force you to sit with a hollow lower back and not to use your abs when sitting upright. What helps somewhat is heat: placing a cherry pit pillow in the microwave and on your painful area, an infrared cabin can also help. As long as you keep moving despite the pain to keep the blood flow going. The more sitting still, the more painful it becomes. The pain can radiate to the side and front of the hip up to your thigh.

I never want to experience this again! With a dysfunctional or painful Psoas, your entire body stability is lost and it becomes impossible to move without pain. I therefore have to correct that hollow lower back that I have had since childhood. My ChiRunning running technique changes with it, but I have to rebuild my running. My Stryd running schedule has to be put aside for a while. This is a difficult assignment that will take several months, but luckily I have received good exercises from professionals and I have no choice, because that pain must not come back and I want to stay pain free at least at this point for the rest of my life. So do exercises several times a day and no longer have chairs with a backrest. I myself have recreated a “soul chair” on the chassis of an office chair, which allows me to sit cross-legged, on my knees or as if on a stool to alternate more often. A Pilates ball is also a much healthier and cheaper alternative to prevent back problems.

I have also gained a few kilos due to less exercise, but I will lose weight again with running. I have now learned to understand better how less exercise leads to a feeling of apathy, restlessness, how you continue to have a feeling of hunger and that you feel less and less inclined to exercise. Like a silent killer, this voice grows stronger and you slowly but surely weaken your mental and physical resistance and the communication between your head, body and heart becomes increasingly unclear. But luckily you can work on that!

What works for me (I don’t believe in “one size fits all”) is to just start by picking up something that gives you a mental or physical resistance, no matter how small, but at the same time nourishing your heart and soul, otherwise you will get stuck in your head too much. I use the Pomodoro system more often and start doing some physical exercises after 25 minutes, but I don’t do that systematically every day. My smartwatch is totally ridiculous, it congratulates me every time I get up from my chair! I start the morning with what absolutely must be done that day. I also regularly throw in days without screen time, that is nowadays increasingly difficult and I lose energy from screen and internet and we have started to behave like ADDers with our screens. I force myself to at least go for a walk. With a barefoot walking meditation (entirely barefoot) I literally become grounded very quickly.

Going for it completely on your own willpower (from your head) doesn’t work for me, because that’s a struggle that only works in the short term, you forget to love yourself. Willpower combined with love is the best balance for me to keep learning and to move with what is happening!

But I hope to be able to run another 100 miles in September! The photo below is a living example and still impressive how you can still change into old age. Keep up the good work!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *