Sometimes You’ve Just Got to Roll With the Punches

It’s eleven in the morning at the time of this writing and I should be on a plane headed toward New York to attend the Woodstock Fruit Festival. Instead, I’m in bed writing this email to you.

Why? Because the universe hates me.

Okay, not really. ;)

It’s because I hurt my back Sunday night. I was working on a puzzle—yes, I know I’m a dweeb—when I bent over the table and, uh oh!

It felt like my lower back was tearing in two!

You may remember that I had some lower back trouble earlier this year, but this was different. This was much more painful. So much so that I couldn’t stand up at all!

Luckily, the pain subsided and I was able to get up and walk again thirty minutes later. This was a huge relief, but then I thought, why now? Why when everything else that day had been going my way?

The weather had cooled down to a comfortably warm 90 degrees with a slight breeze. I had just played tennis after almost two weeks off, feeling and playing better than ever. My weight training sessions had been going phenomenally well, with gains made almost every workout for the past 9 weeks.

And of course, I was all psyched and ready to learn new things, meet new people, and fill up on tasty fresh produce at the fruit festival. All of this with no back pain to speak of!

Then I realized something.

All this whining wasn’t helping me one bit. No amount of tears or curse words were going to make my pain go away and they sure as heck weren’t going to help me figure out what caused the injury in the first place.

What would make the pain go away? Rest and lots of it. That means no tennis, no lifting weights, and no flying to fruit festivals.

So that’s what I’ve been doing these past few days.

Okay, so I have cheated a bit. I did go out for a couple of hours Tuesday night. And guess what? I paid the price. My back ached all through the night and was even worse the next morning.

So it’s back to rest, rest, and more rest. And it’s paying off. The pain is significantly better than it was two days ago. I can actually bend forward a few inches without any pain!

But enough about me…

What about you?

We all know that disappointment is just a part of life. Things can’t go our way all the time and we have to be able to roll with the punches.

What disappointments have you experienced lately that have affected your health and fitness goals? What have you done to get back on track, make your situation better, or even just improve your mental outlook?

Leave your comments below!

Go raw and be fit,

P.S. Wondering what caused my lower back injury? I’m pretty sure I have the answer to that and it’s actually pretty simple. In fact, it’s a nasty habit that almost every one of us engages in multiple times a day.

More on that in a future article…

P.P.S. Having trouble getting back on track with your raw food diet for lack of healthy raw food recipes that actually taste good? Be sure to check out my raw recipe e-book…

To learn more about the book and order your copy, click below:



  1. Hi Swaze,

    I read your back pain email and found it funny (not in a bad way). I believe you are a cool person and it’s just great how you express/share your information- even if it’s just telling about something like your past few days having to taking it easy. Anyway, I hope my little bit of imput adds some healing to you so you can be up and running sooner than latter.

  2. Swayze,

    You are not fooling me. I know what the real truth is behind your “back pain”. You were really trying to get out of having to spend a week sleeping in a VW microbus with a bunch of New York fruit hippies. And as much fun as a papaya and mango orgy might be, I bet you did not even plan on taking your tie died t-shirt and headband out of the storage closet. Listen, I know how stressful it can be joining hands with dozens of hardcore fruit mavens and singing the “Florida Orange Juice song” but we were all depending on you to take one for the LFRFT. (For those of you already in a drug induced state of fruit nirvana the acronym LFRFT =Low Fat Raw Fruit Team and no there is not really a Florida Orange Juice song I just made that up because I could not think of a fruit song) Swayze, you are letting us down. We were so looking forward to seeing those photos of you riding your bike down Farmer Yasgur’s hill holding a watermelon under each arm, dodging naked raw foodists while sipping on a Jamba Juice smoothie and playing the harmonica. (OK, other than being anatomically impossible and the fact that they don’t even have a Jamba Juice anywhere near the Yasgur Farm, it sounded kinda good when I wrote it.) You can be assured that I will be watching the internet very carefully in the next few days and I better not find any pictures of you laying on the beach in Bermuda with a watermelon under each arm while sipping a Jamba Juice and playing the Harmonica. I will be greatly disappointed missy!!

    P.S., In case this whole back thing turns out to be true I did have another theory. You really need to stop buying so many cases of bananas. A big burly Union dock worker would have back problems after unloading the 300 cases you go through each week. Don’t you think it is time you invested in a forklift? And that is not even counting all of your greens! Really woman, you are not bionic.

    Also, I am forwarding you a med-alert necklace just in case you “fall and can’t get up” I saw it on a commercial in between a Jay the Juiceman infomercial at 3am. Hey, I am up on all of the latest techno-gadgets.

    Next time come up with a more original excuse, please!

    Bill K.

    Swayze Reply:

    You got me, Bill. My back is just fine. Instead, I’m hostin’ my own Meat and Sweets Feast here in BBQ-ville. No fruit allowed! :lol:

    P.S. In all honesty, no 300 cases of bananas here. In fact, I had my first banana of the entire summer just yesterday! Instead, I’ve been munching on lots of mangoes, peaches, cantaloupes, blueberries, etc.

    P.P.S. And since you mentioned Jay the Juiceman…

  3. Swayze, that is really psychic… Two days ago I was standing in my kitchen, cutting up some veggies and suddenly I felt an immensive pain in my back. I could not stand on my feet any longer and it felt like I can’t breath. I don’t know quite how I made it to my bed.

    Now two days later I can move again, but my left back still hurts a lot – I can’t really sit, I can’t stand and even worse – I can’t sleep. Being at work now (I have some deadlines ahead and can’t stay at home…) is a pain in the a… – wait… back.

    But you’re right, the only thing you really can do is rest and wait until it’s getting better…

    And after all, shared pain is only half the pain – so let’s suffer together and pretend that it is a lot nicer to spend a sunny day inside instead of going out to the lake :-)

    Take care & hope you are feeling better soon!


    Swayze Reply:

    I’m so sorry to hear that, Kathrin! Hope you feel better soon. :)


  4. Sorry that your suffering with low back pain…I’ve experienced it myself, and I know that is no fun….A chiropractor helped a lot, and I’ve found that yoga has also been very beneficial for my back pain as well…

    As far as staying raw, I’m doing really well, other than my 2 hard boiled eggs a day…I have finally gotten my weight under 180 down from 250….anyways,

    Get well soon, and take it easy on the puzzles…LOL…TTYL

    Swayze Reply:

    Congrats on the weight loss, Stephen! I’ll try to cool it on the puzzles for now, but I don’t know…I think I’m addicted. ;)

  5. Swayze, sorry to hear about your back and the change of plans regarding fruit festival. Hopefully, you’ll make it there next time.

    As far as me concerned, I had been having problems with back pain for years. In my case, it’s upper back and my neck that brings me pain and trouble. Even though it doesn’t affect my ability to function and accomplish my daily tasks, it still affects my productivity and quality of life. All in all, pain of any kind is just an unpleasant thing, and can be very annoying too! :(

    Earlier this year I paid a visit to a chiropractor, and let me tell you, that was one of the best things I’ve done in order to deal with the issue. My chiropractor put me to work, and five months later, I’m pain-free! And I still spend quite a bit of time at my computer (it used to make my neck pain worse).

    I would like to mention that I’m an individual who tries to stay independent from medical professionals of any kind as much as possible. However, I feel that chiropractors are somewhere in between, and my chiropractor sure helped me tremendously. I also gained a better understanding of my body, what was causing the pain, not to mention simple techniques and exercises I learned that help me to stay pain-free. Considering all mentioned above, I would definitely recommend to find a good chiropractor in your area and get their input.

    Hope you are getting better, and will be pain-free very soon!

    Swayze Reply:

    Thank you, Vlada! Love your website, btw. :)

  6. Thanks for this post, I love it. I am in my 2nd raw pregnancy and struggling – it was easy the first time but now my body wants none of it. I am getting horrible detox symptoms and it’s not clicking somehow… gotta roll with the punches.

    Swayze, I am very curious about your weight lifting – Have you lost weight doing it? What do you believe about cardio vs weights as far as weight loss, etc.? Interesting topic

    Swayze Reply:

    Congrats on the pregnancy! I just wish it were going easier for you. :(

    You’re right, weights vs cardio for weight loss is an interesting topic. I’ve been weight lifting for years and it’s something that is very near and dear to my heart. Keep your eyes peeled for more on that in the future.


  7. Back pain sucks! Really hope you recover soon. Sunday two weeks ago I put something heavy down into a closet in a very wrong diagonal movement and it also hit me in my upper back! However I was still able to walk and do all kind of thinks, I also went out exercising but I still feel a deep pain afterwards and when sitting down, even right now. But if I don’t move everything feels fine :) (I know rest… but I want to keep exercising)

    I bought your recipe book since I’m in need of inspiration. But most of them contained fruit and that part I got covert (breakfast and lunch), the problems is in the dinners and I am trying to follow food combining. So no fruits in my dinners but lots of vegetables, and there are a lot of products in the recipes that are not available in The Netherlands.

    I am also experimenting with sprouting, and I am preparing a post over raw, organic and normal not roasted nuts with regards to price and taste.

    Swayze Reply:

    Hi Jelle,

    Definitely check out Roger Haeske’s Savoiry Veggie Stews if you’re looking for veggie-packed, delicious raw food dishes:


    Jelle ( Reply:

    I already bought the Savoiry Veggie Stews, and I make them bi-weekly. I like to eat them before exercising, but I don’t like the taste… I tried different sweeteners but no luck yet.

  8. Sorry to hear about your back, Swayze. Hope you’re feeling better soon. Would chiropractic be a help to you?

    I deal with a lot of naggy injuries as a marathoner. My challenge is not letting ego get involved and running faster on my slow workouts, plus being disciplined to do the mundane things like strengthening exercises and icing.

    I’m very seriously considering your cravings program. Eating better and losing weight would be a big help too.