Totally agree. I am still recovering but I followed exactly what you said. Trust noone but your body, listen to it and observe everyday. Massage is great because it allows the joints to elax and not affect the swallen area or joints.
I had 5 lower back disc injury, I am 3 month into the treatment, so far refered pain going to my legs is lamost gone. I expect that within the next 3 month I will be up and runnig.
Listen to you rbody and make sure you always remove every possible muscle knot in your back!!! Must do!!