Premature old lady pains

Thirty isn’t supposed to feel so achy, is it?

I guess I’ll blame my responsibilities as a writer and social media marketer/addict, which mean I spend way too much time curled over a computer.

For the past few months, I have been suffering sporadic back pain that leaves me hobbling around stiffly for days at a time.

I suppose I must be one of those people who carry stress in the back, and I must be under more now that I’m a 30-year-old who:

  • owns a home
  • has a challenging career
  • has multiple dogs
  • has too many plants
  • has a boyfriend
  • has more extra-curricular interests than are realistically manageable 

But, seriously, I did not expect to start whining so much about back pain so soon after hitting the big 3-0.

Until now, I always thought it was silly for folks to get so worked up about birthdays. It’s just a number. Right? Right?!

At a conservative estimate, Scooby the elderpin clocks in at over 100 in dog years, and I hardly ever hear that dude complain.


Dangle a hunk of chicken jerky over his head and you’ll see that the springs in his legs work just fine.

Meanwhile, I let out an embarrassing moan every time I lean down to scoop his 9.5 pounds off the ground.

This is my lifelong resistance to sports and serious exercise catching up with me.

I am certain my father, who turned 70 five days before I turned 30, never experienced an “I’m falling apart” moment until he was well into his sixth decade.


To be clear, neither one of us is “falling apart.”  

While it’s true my dad is having his gall bladder removed today, he is still a He-Man who can wear the heavy uniform of a law enforcement officer daily, lift the sort of heavy objects that laugh at me and do push ups until the bison herd he helps look after comes home.

Lately, it seems like everyone I know is running 5Ks and half-marathons these days — the kinds of races my father ran regularly until his knees started getting mad at him. (At which point he just started spending more time on a bike.)

Although I know it is dumb, it’s hard for me to escape the stupid sense that if I take up running or getting more serious about my fitness now I’m starting too late — like when I tried to learn piano in seventh grade and was subjected to performing in a public recital in which five-year-olds seemed to be tickling Beethoven’s ivories while “Chopsticks” gave me splinters.

But I know these aches and pains are my body telling me something needs to change.

They’re like the growl of a dog whose message you better heed before the situation gets real bad.

Lucky for me, until he is adopted into his forever home, I have an excellent four-legged running partner handy in the form of one fleet-footed Charlie Machete.

As you can see, I also have some pretty cute new running shoes, courtesy of a guy named Zach.

I have a Groupon for beginner yoga classes, too, and a gift certificate for a massage, courtesy of a guy named Zach’s mom.

It’s time to banish Crystal’s premature old lady pains.

Let’s do this! (Readers, you’re gonna have to help keep me honest.)

Can you feel the difference in your body between how old you used to be and how old you are now? What do you do about it?


About crystalwayward

I live with two formerly wayward dogs. I care deeply about the environment, and I think gardening is a revolutionary act.

Posted on July 3, 2012, in Dogs, Family, Random Life and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 20 Comments.

  1. Go girl! I’m also 30(-ish) and I’ve had back pain for about as long as I can remember. I’ve tried everything from massage to physical therapy to chiropractors, and let me just say you’re on the right track. Nothing makes my back feel better than when I’m exercising regularly, strengthening my whole core. Hang in there girl, and it’s a very good thing you have a very handsome walking/running partner!

  2. As you may recall from our high school days, I was no athlete – or even sporty at that! Yes, I played golf, but let’s be realistic – one doesn’t have to be in great shape to play golf and be decent! After I turned 30 I took a look at where the scale was headed (up!) and how I felt about myself (down!). I started running. And I’ll be honest, I could barely run to the end of the block! After almost three years now, I’m still running. Not as much as I did last year (5Ks are expensive!) but I still run 2 miles or more a day. Sometimes I take Dixie with me, sometimes it’s just me. Sometimes I decide to ride my bike instead – to keep things interesting. I know how hard it is start and even harder to keep yourself motivated. But, you have your blogging audience to keep you going (and to hold you accountable)! Start slow and find something you love – you’ll see how easy it comes. Good luck!

    • Surely you recall how anti-sporty I was in high school, too! Very little has changed. But I do seem to get into exercise spurts. But then life happens and I quit my gym membership or just quit making time for exercise. But I definitely feel like something has changed this year, and I better get my act together. Thanks for the encouragement. And go you for keeping up with you fitness habits.

  3. While I’d never take up running I do like to get in a workout about 5 days a week and as a 30-ish something girl that’s good in my book! And, having dogs around is the perfect motivation even if it’s just a walk or two a day.

  4. Amanda Bigley

    Somebody once told me, “On the day you turn 30, you’ll wake up achey and it will never stop.” I was achey on the day I turned 30, but that was due to a hangover. A couple days later, I started running. ME. Running. First, it was just to see if it was physically possible. Now, it’s becoming an addiction. I started by googling C25K (hint, hint). If I can do it, ANYBODY can. Also, I can’t believe your Dad’s 70. He is definitely “young” for his age!!

    • That’s a hilarious turning 30 story, Amanda. Although I did not wake up hangoverachy on my actual birthday, the next day was seriously painful. Good for you on the C25K action — that sounds intimidating, but your commitment to this whole running thing is inspiring.

  5. i hear you!! and why does it seem that my pants shrink after the weekend? i crave SALT and its just not summer without drinks! lots of em. sigh. im in.

  6. Bella: I’m 10 and some days I’m sore getting out of bed. I still do my favorite thing every day which is to play ball. 🙂

  7. Good for you for getting on the yoga/running/working out train! I’m not as diligent as I’d like to be, but I do know that stretching and (at the very least), walking helps a lot. I too have those aches and pains.

    • I can definitely feel a difference after I take the dogs for a walk. Lying flat on my back works, too, although I have a hard time sleeping that way. Thanks for stopping by my blog, Lorna. I miss you, girl.

  8. At 30 you are still a spring-chicken. It’s definitely the computer’s fault. Always blame the computer

  9. Hope your father’s gall bladder operation went ok. Great picture of the two of you.

  1. Pingback: My first 5K « Wayward Dogs

  2. Pingback: Lessons from running a 5K with a dog « Wayward Dogs

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: