Thursday, December 20, 2012

Backbone/Bulldog Loop in Malibu, and Not a Lat Injury

Despite a current injury, I relied on my low levels of common sense and did an awesome 15 miler (this trail with side spurs) in the I-can't-believe-I-haven't-run-here-before Malibu Creek State Park, in the Santa Monica Mountains. Some of the views would not be out of place in Colorado, except for the Pacific being below your feet of course.


There sure am be some green stuff back there, and the rock formations and sea views from the top of the ridge can't be beat.  Plus along the way I saw the MASH filming site.  It's only right now that I laugh out loud and realize I ran the aptly-named Backbone loop (and Bulldog).

Why is that funny?  Two posts ago I mentioned a possible injury to my lats that I got (I think) from bicep curls.  Despite knowing that something didn't fit, i.e. the location of the pain wasn't really where your lats are, I didn't update my belief.  Saying the same thing in medical language, I should have moved "lat tear/sprain" down my differential and thought about what to move up.

Long story short, there are many reasons to think that my current (and previous) pain are a disc herniation, rather than a lat injury.  I have contralateral pain at a different level that also fits the bill for herniated disc that's stayed with me for a year but I can tolerate it; this one has gone from comparatively much worse to almost resolved in a few days, and it's moved downward a little too (n.b., muscle injuries don't do that).

Fortunately, scary though it sounds, disc herniation is usually self-resolving or only causes mild discomfort, and can be managed conservatively with NSAIDs, heat, and activity restriction.  15 miles up and down hills didn't bother me too much; I guess I just need to find a bicep exercise that doesn't involve shock-loading my spinal column.

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