Do More, Hurt More..

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    Nov 24, 2010 2:51 AM GMT
    Over the last six or seven weeks I've been really disciplined about my working out. Whereas before I was a 3-4 day a week-er in a slightly haphazard routine, I'm now a solid 5days a week M-F, 3 days weights, 2 days cardio, and really pushing hard. I'm pretty much gently sore somewhere all the time, and I'm quite comfortable with that as I know it means I'm stimulating some good muscle growth (and hopefully, working off the body fat to reveal some ab definition!)

    All good, except that I'm finding I now need a massage every week (as opposed to once/month like I used to have) otherwise I get really tight through my neck and develop a nasty neck/head ache that lingers over days and can only be combatted with daily anti-inflammatory medicines.

    Anyone else had a similar experience? What did you do about it?
    Or.. do I just need to resign myself to more regular massage and rather a lot of anti-inflam meds in my near future as an unavoidable consequence of punishing my body more?
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    Nov 24, 2010 5:01 AM GMT
    How often do you stretch? You should stretch and warm up before every workout, and maybe consider a short cooldown after?
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    Nov 24, 2010 5:41 AM GMT
    I don't stretch before (I have it in my head somewhere that that's bad to do?) - but instead warm up with really, really light weights.

    I stretch afterwards (kinda quickly) and then through the day when I feel myself getting tight.

    Not enough?
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    Nov 24, 2010 5:45 AM GMT
    r_evolutionary said

    All good, except that I'm finding I now need a massage every week (as opposed to once/month like I used to have) otherwise I get really tight through my neck and develop a nasty neck/head ache that lingers over days and can only be combatted with daily anti-inflammatory medicines.

    Anyone else had a similar experience? What did you do about it?
    Or.. do I just need to resign myself to more regular massage and rather a lot of anti-inflam meds in my near future as an unavoidable consequence of punishing my body more?



    sounds like you pinched something, are you watching your form?
    get a better warm up in there, less chance of injury.

    anti-inflammatory meds daily will eventually burn through your stomach, so, no don't resign yourself to that fate. modify your workout, it sounds like you're pushing too hard too soon.
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    Nov 24, 2010 6:40 AM GMT
    AdriantheRN said

    sounds like you pinched something, are you watching your form?
    get a better warm up in there, less chance of injury.

    anti-inflammatory meds daily will eventually burn through your stomach, so, no don't resign yourself to that fate. modify your workout, it sounds like you're pushing too hard too soon.



    Yup - I thought too many anti-inflams were bad, is why I'm hunting for more info.

    My form is good, I've been working out for 5+ years now, and with a 1:1 personal training session in there at least once a week that whole time. My trainer is really strict on the form stuff, it's served me well.

    I do wonder if something is indeed pinched in the neck though.. could be worth a visit to a chiro or a physio perhaps. Maybe an underlying issue that is being exacerbated by the working out more strenuously.
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    Nov 24, 2010 6:55 AM GMT
    Adding a more substantial stretching routine (before OR after) can help your soreness. Body movement is an essential part of cardio and weight training, so it's good to bring focus to joint and muscle flexibility.

    Ask your trainer about a full-body stretch routine OR (since I'm the yoga guy) see what adding a weekly yoga class will do for your muscle tension. People who've never done it might think it's boring or non-athletic, but there are many benefits to focused stretching (for both body and mind).
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    Nov 24, 2010 7:38 PM GMT
    yeah, definitely get checked for pinched nerves or muscles. are you getting any numbness or tingling anywhere in your upper body?
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    Nov 24, 2010 7:55 PM GMT
    You are overusing your upper traps when you lift which is causing the headaches. Stretch your upper traps (and levators too) 3x a day. You probably have a muscle imbalance between the upper traps/scapular stabilizers, too.

    Strengthen you scapular stabilizers by doing rows, lat pull downs (to the chest/not behind the neck), reverse flys.

    Also, avoid overhead lifting (military press, overhead dumbell press, overhead tricep extension).

    Lastly, strengthen your RTC doing shoulder internal/external rotation with resistance.

    Hope this helps.
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    Nov 24, 2010 8:38 PM GMT
    take stretching seriously.. and not feeble "one with the universe" stuff... real, serious stretching. Also take a few days off, let your body reprogram... how about don´t go to the gym til Monday... you won´t lose anything. Rest, recover and start up again.

    Train so that you can KEEP training. That is always the secret of success.
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    Nov 24, 2010 9:12 PM GMT
    Stretching before and after workout is really important. It helps your muscles relax and cool down without being stiff. Also do some neck rotations, most of times when we lift weights we tend to put a lot strain on our necks trying to maintain our head straight.
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    Nov 25, 2010 2:08 PM GMT
    My neck and upper back muscles lock up, causing headaches. It took a year to figure out what why I had a painful headache every day. I had to quit working out because exercise caused my headaches to grow worse; I was also taking at least 16 Ibuprofin pills every day and sometimes 20 (which I know was horrible for my body!).

    I saw quite a few doctors, had an CT-Scan, saw a neck and spine specialist, and a neurologist. The neurologist diagnosed me with Myofascial Pain Syndrome, a form of Fibormyalgia. He prescribed a low dosage of a anti-depressant, which helps the headaches.

    I go to a physical therapist once a week, do daily stretching/strengthening exercises for my back and neck, and take fewer meds. I used to be in pain about 85-95% of the time and now it's about 5% of the time. I am really happy that I can work out again and I always feel better after I exercise.

    It wouldn't hurt to get things checked out by a specialist, just to be safe. There might be something neurological going on. The pain medication you are taking can really damage your liver and stomach over time. Have you tried Aleve?
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    Nov 25, 2010 10:35 PM GMT
    Rightio. More stretching. Check. Got that message.
    It does feel, as you say asnextdoor, that my neck is copping a workout every time I work out!

    Lostboy - agree with you on the rest, I do take a few days of here and there when it feels like my body needs it. No point damaging myself!

    I'll go get myself checked out, too.. don't think I'm in as extreme play as you were lissenup, but point taken to see if there's something underlying this.

    And catfish it feels, instinctively, like what you're saying about a traps/stabilisers imbalance sounds about right, so I'll check that out with the physio/chiro when I get there..
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    Nov 25, 2010 11:17 PM GMT
    i've always thought stretching ( static stretching ) before a workout is NOT a good idea as the muscles lose an ability to contract efficiently., esp. if you're going to lift heavy. ( they weaken by up to 30% according to some studies )

    stretching after is a must though.