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ANNAGATER Posts: 143
8/15/10 11:20 A

My lower back aches a lot of the time in general. When I was going to the gym regularly, the elliptical really aggravated my back even if I just used it for a short time. I had to stop using it altogether. The treadmill worked out a lot better for me.

DENZO2000 SparkPoints: (6,032)
Fitness Minutes: (10,265)
Posts: 344
7/1/10 7:25 A

I use the elliptical all the time and it's definitely not been a waste of time. It's helped me lose quite a few pounds. I prefer it to the treadmill most days because it's lower impact.

The only other thing I can think of other than what's already been mentioned is your posture. Possibly you're leaning forward too much? You can also try not gripping the machine, it will be a little harder because you are also balancing, but might lead to better posture.

KRYSTALILY Posts: 1,259
6/30/10 6:55 P

Also if the pain could be due to the medical procedure you had done, you might want to mention it to your doctor next time you see them and ask for exercises they can recommend you do to help alleviate any discomfort you are feeling.

Good luck!!

KRYSTALILY Posts: 1,259
6/30/10 6:43 P

It was only a suggestion, but since you asked... my personal opinion and experience is that a treadmill is NOT a waste of time if you are able to effectively use it. Everyone's body is different but I burn the same amount on the treadmill that I do on the elliptical. Sometimes I even burn more on the treadmill depending on the intensity that I jog (and that is with me wearing a HRM). I also switch so I don't get bored with doing the same thing for an hour.

That is why I personally switch between the two. It just depends on the levels of intensity I decide to do during those exercises.

Good luck! I hope the core exercises help you with your lower back problem. :)


Edited by: KRYSTALILY at: 6/30/2010 (18:44)
MSAEBARRON Posts: 261
6/30/10 5:42 P

Yes, I do. I had a pilonidal cyst removed from my tailbone over ten years ago which in turn changed the way I am able to sit and has caused back pain and fluid retention in my lower back. I have been able to manage the pain by getting periodic deep tissue massages to release the knots. Exercise in general has always helped alleviate my discomfort as well. It wasn't until I got to an hour on the elliptical did exercise ever create discomfort.

BCROWLEY1 Posts: 356
6/30/10 4:57 P

Do you regularly experience back pain (other that after elliptical sessions)? Pilates really helped my back pain. Like others have suggested, improving core strength will help your back.

MSAEBARRON Posts: 261
6/30/10 4:02 P

Is Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred considered strength training?? I received it a few days ago and have yet to try it out.

I am going to skip my cardio today and figure out a good strength training routine.

Sorry I've been hard headed in my last comments! It's just so hard to figure out what is the right thing to do when there is so much conflicting information about maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

MSAEBARRON Posts: 261
6/30/10 3:54 P

Luckily the elliptical I use has the option to adjust the stride so since I'm 5'1" I have it on the shortest setting.

I didn't have pain at 30 or 45min.

What if today I went back to 45min and then increased my time by a minute a day until I reach 60min?

MSAEBARRON Posts: 261
6/30/10 3:50 P

I alternate between forward and backward constantly. Usually 5min forward 2min backward.

Why would I switch from the elliptical to the treadmill if I am able to be on the elliptical for the duration of the workout? I feel like treadmills are a waste of time - why burn 100 calories on a treadmill when I can burn 130 on the elliptical? I'm sort of obsessed with how efficient my sessions are - I focus on burning the most calories in the shortest amount of time.

It's not a shooting or sharp pain, but more of a dull lingering pain. Probably doesn't help that I wear high heels most weekdays either.

I'm going to incorporate some core training into my workouts and see if that helps.

I'm struggling with people saying I should take it easy. I do not find it difficult to be on the elliptical for an hour. I keep my heart rate consistent and work hard, but am still able to breathe correctly.

Could this just be some transition pains that will go away once my body is used to the increased workouts?

BRITOMART Posts: 7,407
6/30/10 3:46 P

I'd agree with just about everything others have said: increasing by more than 10%/week usually is too much too soon.

Your core is your stability and without a strong core--not just posture, but all the muscles--you are asking for all sorts of problems.

If you are wedded to 60 minutes/day, try doing it in two or more shorter sessions. That might give your body a chance to adjust.

One thought I had on reading your initial post, but since you have used this elliptical, it may not be useful--some ellipticals are better/worse for certain people because of stride length. Your back may hurt because you are striding too long to accommodate the machine. Thus a strong core is ESSENTIAL! also, you may get a lot of benefit by switching to 'real' walking once or twice a week, just to vary the muscles you are most using. Good success to you on your journeys.

KRYSTALILY Posts: 1,259
6/30/10 3:35 P

Do some core exercises to strengthen your back muscles. You also don't need to do an hour on the elliptical to get some good calorie burning in. Try switching machines. I do about 15-20 on the elliptical and then a solid 30-40 on the treadmill. (Walk 5, jog 25-30, walk 5) and I burn quite a bit. Then I do some core exercises at home because my back muscles aren't all that great and so that causes my lower back to hurt.

Good luck!

DENZO2000 SparkPoints: (6,032)
Fitness Minutes: (10,265)
Posts: 344
6/30/10 2:08 P

Try going backwards on the elliptical every once in a while if you don't already. Maybe 5 minutes backwards for ever 20 minutes on the machine.

Also you need to do some ab and back exercises to strengthen your core.

SERGEANTMAJOR Posts: 6,412
6/30/10 1:20 P

By resisting strength training, to use your words, you are in effect resisting geting fit or controlling your weight. Cardio is not the way to get fit or lose weight, nutrition is the key to losing weight and strength training is the most beneficial form of exercise to compliment it. In order of priority the traid for weight control is nutrition (diet), strength training and then cardio.

Strength training will not make you big or bulky nor will it create an unattractive apperarence. It will increase your muscle function improving your movements and coordination in everyday activities,it will increase bone density making them stroinger and it will reduce the jiggle effect when you move. It will increase your resting metabolism which cardio will not do, this allows you to more efficiently use the calories you consume.

Reduce the cardio, increase the strength traing, you will be pleased with the results.

Edited by: SERGEANTMAJOR at: 8/15/2010 (11:52)
MSAEBARRON Posts: 261
6/30/10 12:56 P

Cutting back is hard especially now that I am used to burning 500 calories per session. I did 45min for a few sessions to build up to an hour, but I guess I should have stayed at 45 min for longer.

I am currently only doing the elliptical and have resisted incorporating strength training, but I guess if I want my workouts to be longer and more intense I'm going to have to strengthen my core accordingly.

Thanks for the feedback!!

T_LEE24 Posts: 256
6/30/10 12:16 P

yeah dont over do it.i would say cut back also and do some back exercises

ZORBS13 SparkPoints: (98,980)
Fitness Minutes: (100,107)
Posts: 13,070
6/30/10 12:06 P

2 things:

- cut back a bit. Doubling your workout time is quite intense and your body is responding in kind.

- work on core strengthening exercises

MSAEBARRON Posts: 261
6/30/10 12:00 P

My lower back usually aches when I am living a sedentary life. Generally, when I start working out the pain is alleviated - except as of lately.

I doubled my daily time on the elliptical (my main source of exercise) to an hour a day about a week or so ago. I am now experiencing lower back pain after my workouts and throughout the following day. What gives? I have always had great posture and never experienced this problem when I was doing the elliptical 30min/day.

I thoroughly stretch for 5-10 minutes after my sessions which seems to help my arms and legs, but not my back.

Why is this happening now? Is it because of the intensity and duration of my workout? Has anyone else had this happen?

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