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Aches and pains. When not to push through them?

415 Views | 6 Replies | Last: 1 mo ago by SACR
harge57
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AG
I feel like I'm getting old, but I'm only 33. I feel like I'm constantly on the fence on when to push through or back off.

I started lifting regularly again after an 18 month hiatus. I got back up in weights pretty quick doing the 5x5 program so 6 to 8 weeks in I started having some hip pain and now having a bit of shoulder soreness. I have been doing some serious hip mobilization work and deloaded on squats and am working back up which seems to help but we will see as I move back into more serious weight. Now this shoulder thing is starting to nag at me.

This experience along with some it band soreness from running seems like all parts of my workouts are turning into rehab sessions.

How do you make the decision on when to back off?
bigtruckguy3500
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A good rule of thumb is that when pain is asymmetric, it's not from the workout itself, and may be a sign of underlying injury/imbalance/susceptibility to injury.

If you moved up in weight quickly, it never hurts to cut back on weight/volume for a while. Having 1-2 days a week dedicated to yoga/pre-hab/rehab is a good idea. Or you could also just split those days up and start every workout with 10-15 minutes of dedicated rotator cuff work, lateral hip work, stretching and mobility, etc.

And at some point, you have to be honest with yourself and figure out if you're lifing to be as big and strong as possible, and are ok with injuries that may come from that? Or if you want to lift for longevity and you want to keep lifting when you're in your 70s.

You could also be like the guy at my old gym who was in his 60's probably, held several powerlifting records at some point in his life. Walked with a limp, hunch, and almost a twist in his torso, but he continued deadlift despite the pain you could visibly see him in.
ttha_aggie_09
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AG
I'm the same age and have recently had a shoulder injury.

Distal clavicle osteolysis - shoulder
Tendinitis in the elbow

My recommendation is to stretch and work on mobility much more than you did when you were in your 20s. I have no idea what your workout schedule looked like but I continued to lift like I did in my 20s and over the last 3 years, it has been a serious struggle with minor injuries or muscle tweaks.

At some point, you need to evaluate your program and determine what is necessary to maintaining strength and what is just preference for personal challenge.

If you would like to PM me or email me, please do. I would be happy to share in more detail. I know we're not "old" but doing things we did in our 20s is not as easy anymore...
Hoosegow
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Bigtruck as usual is spot on.

Understand that no one cares about your lifts but you. I get pushing yourself. I get challenging yourself. Pushing through pain, playing hurt, etc is t a sign of toughness, it is a sign of stupidity.

As you get older, you cant push yourself like you used to. You need longer to heal. I hate to tell you this but at 33 most people who played in the NFL are retired.

Work towards your health. Add deload weeks into your schedule. If you are hurting work around the pain, not through it. Finally, work on your form. You are going to deny it but I bet it sucks. Better to drop weight and improve form.

Class of '94
ttha_aggie_09
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AG
Hoosegow said:

Bigtruck as usual is spot on.

Understand that no one cares about your lifts but you. I get pushing yourself. I get challenging yourself. Pushing through pain, playing hurt, etc is t a sign of toughness, it is a sign of stupidity.

As you get older, you cant push yourself like you used to. You need longer to heal. I hate to tell you this but at 33 most people who played in the NFL are retired.

Work towards your health. Add deload weeks into your schedule. If you are hurting work around the pain, not through it. Finally, work on your form. You are going to deny it but I bet it sucks. Better to drop weight and improve form.


Man that's brutal, but likely true. I feel like as you get older, the deficiencies in your form become more apparent.

When I was 25 and started consistently squatting "heavy", my horrible form blessed me with patellar tendinitis. I had to completely rebuild my squat and am way stronger to this day because of it.

Excellent point Hoosegow!
Walt Luddiger
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harge57 said:

I feel like I'm getting old, but I'm only 33.
i used to feel like i could fly, then i turned 30. never sprained an ankle while jogging, until 30. Never had bursitis until 32. never had shin splints until 34, had them twice last year. welcome to the club. just try and alternate workouts as best as you can to allow max recovery.
SACR
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AG

The point I learned to back off is when the pain became more than just a chronic pain. When I was in my 20s, if I slightly pulled something and it still hurt the next workout, I'd just work around it, strengthen everything around it and let it heal.

There were some chronic pains, like joint pain, I just knew were part of reaching my goals, and I knew they were from the volume of work I was doing and would stop if I cut back or stopped altogether. The whole 'difference between pain and injury' thing.

I think it was after I turned 36 was when I noticed the pain stuck longer and working around it was no longer a solution. Now if I pull or tweak something during a workout, I simply stop that exercise and come back to it the next workout. Recovery time is longer, and better to not finish a workout and be pain-free than to do something that will take weeks or months to recover from.

In your case doing 5x5, I'd say to simply drop down 5 lbs to your previous weight and see if the aches continue. It can tell you the difference between an issue with overwork or an issue with form. The shoulder soreness is probably from lack of warmup. I read once that if you keep hitting bench hard for a prolonged time without proper stretching, something will give, and it is usually your rotator cuff.
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