F4F Smart Moves for Bad Backs

Get Moving and Feel Relief


Story Updated: Nov 18, 2010

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Indiana's NewsCenter) -If you're like many, it's not that you don't want to get into an exercise routine, you may be worried about injury.

And you're not alone. 80% of us at some point deal with back pain or injury. And while you may think rest would the key for healing believe it or not fitness may be the answer.

In this Fort 4 Fitness segment watch as our trainer Dr. Jamey Gordon explains and illustrates how increasing aerobic activity with running and walking improves back pain. The key is doing it correctly, building up to your body's comfort level slowly.

Dr. Gordon shows us some key techniques for making sure we introduce exercise safely and injury free.

He says one of the main concepts of proper running is keeping our trunks stable, increased motion at the bottom of the spine can cause increased stress on the spine, keeping it still prevents injury.

Jamey admits the goal of running or walking 13.1 miles sounds difficult but says its very attainable when you build slow and train properly.

Just remember this is not about a race this is about doing something for YOU.

Here's your run/walk training program.

Days 1-4 walk 20 minutes
Days 5-8 walk 30 minutes

Do program on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday (Days 2,4,6,7) *Do not run on the off days.

Week 1 Run 1 minute, walk 5 minute. Repeat 5 times (30 minutes)
Week 2 Run 2 minutes, walk 4 minutes. Repeat 5 times (30 minutes)
Week 3 Run 3 minutes, walk 3 minutes. Repeat 5 times (30 minutes)
Week 4 Run 4 minute, walk 2 minutes. Repeat 5 times (30 minutes)
Week 5 Run 5 minutes, walk 2.5 minutes. Repeat 4 times (30 minutes)
Week 6 Run 6 minutes, walk 2 minutes. Repeat 3 times, then run 6 minutes (30 minutes)
Week 7 Run 7 minutes, walk 3 minutes. Repeat 3 times (30 minutes)
Week 8 Run 8 minutes, walk 2 minutes. Repeat 3 times (30 minutes).
Week 9 Run 9 minutes, walk 2 minutes. Repeat 2 times, then run 8 minutes (30 minutes)
Week 10 Run 9 minutes, walk 1 minute. Repeat 3 times (30 minutes)
Week 11 Run 13 minutes, walk 2 minutes. Repeat 2 times (30 minutes)
Week 12 Run 14 minutes, walk 1 minute. Repeat 2 times (30 minutes)
*If you feel tired, repeat Week 9 before moving to Week 10
Week 13 Run 30 minutes.

Begin with the week number that corresponds to your current tolerance.

Always conclude training session with static stretching of the calves, quads, hamstrings, hip extensors, hip flexes, and lateral hip muscles.


In five months, on September 26th 2009 thousands will pack the streets of downtown Fort Wayne for the second annual Fort 4 Fitness Half-Marathon / 4- Mile Walk-Run and this year promises to be bigger and better.

The primary mission of the Fort-4-Fitness Festival is to promote healthy living in our community. Arguably the people in our community who would benefit the most from training for a 13.1 run are the same ones who usually feel that they could NEVER do it.

(© Copyright 2009 Indiana's NewsCenter. All Rights Reserved.)

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Dr. Gordon said on Tuesday, Jun 16 at 2:49 AM

As long as you do some well-designed strengthening exercises to build up to running, you should be ok. Remember, that fusions take up to a year to fully heal depending on your health status, so take it slowly and communicate well with your surgeon regarding your desires. A physical therapist may be a great resource as well.

Family Mom said on Wednesday, May 27 at 7:09 AM

I have had 5 lower back fusions and 2 cervical fusions. Plus I have a small tare in a muscle in my left knee. I am doing this run/walk to make myself feel better - it is a goal I have set for myself. I have started walking each day and increase my distance each day (as I am able to without over doing it) I would like to know what I can do to make this safer for me - or what I shouldn't do.

Anonymous said on Thursday, Apr 16 at 4:18 AM

I've had 2 lumbar fusions and a cervical fusion, would this program work for me as well?

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