Well, yes, I am foolish. No argument.
But I’m wondering if I am being particularly foolish about this issue. I sustained three thoracic spine fractures last year, just due to running. A DEXA bone mineral density scan showed that my spine is osteoporotic (Z-score: density is 2.3 standard deviations below average for my age and gender), but my femurs are OK (slightly above average).
Faced with these data, and with on-going thoracic back pain and lots of other health issues to think about, I put running on hold. I declined my GP’s offer of the drug alendronate (Fosamax) [osteonecrosis of the jaw is the last thing I need!] and decided on a drug-free approach instead, through:
- weight gain (increase body weight by up to 10%)
- back exercises
to try to increase the spinal bone mineral density. (My gastroenterologist wants to send me to an endocrinologist to manage this condition, but I don’t think I can afford that. )
My thoracic spine pain is still present to some degree, but I’ve been walking 15 km a day for a couple of months now and I feel I’m ready to move on. My body weight is about 6.5% higher, thanks to daiskmeliadorn’s baking and the back exercises seem to be going OK. So this week I have started some very gentle jogging – around 4 km per day. I’m hoping that this activity may even hasten the restoration of the bone mineral density in my spine, as long as it’s gentle enough, and the duration and repetition isn’t too great.
Ideally, I would be holding off from all running until a repeat DEXA scan demonstrates that I’m out of the osteoporotic zone. But I’m too impatient, and perhaps too foolish for that.