pain below neck and in right forearm

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 30, 2013 4:44 PM GMT
    I've been working out now for the past 3 months, seeing significant gains (all while losing 8 pounds!). But, for the past 3 weeks, I've been having trouble in 2 areas, and I don't know what the problems are or what to do about them.

    1) Right forearm. It feels like a tendon in my right forearm burns whenever I do bicep exercises. If you hold your right arm straight out in front of you, the pain is on the lower right side of the forearm about 2 inches away the elbow. I'm having a lot of trouble continuing to make gains with my biceps because of this pain.

    2) Above chest on my left side. Whenever I do the bench press (or any press), the area right around my collarbone burns. The pain is most acute when my arms reach their furthest extension up on the bench press. There is no pain on my right side. I've ceased to make gains on my chest for a week or two; I've been afraid to lift any more weight.

    Any help would be much appreciated!
  • a303guy

    Posts: 829

    Aug 30, 2013 5:04 PM GMT
    I occasionally have similar burning/tingling/numbness in my right forearm and/or palm, and a quick trip to the chiropractor sorts me out, often weeks at a time. In addition to the adjustment, he often will remind me to do plenty of warm-up (cardio) and gentle stretching prior to working out with weights, and that seems to extend the period of time when I have this discomfort. The collarbone issue could also be a similar issue of a mis-alignment, or scar tissue from an earlier injury that the exercise movement is aggravating.

    I doubt either of what you are dealing with is serious, but getting a professional to have a look see wouldn't be a bad idea at all.
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    Aug 30, 2013 5:07 PM GMT
    My guess is you either do not have proper form or are experiencing a subluxation in your spine. I suggest you see your Dr. to determine which it is.

    Best.
  • Destinharbor

    Posts: 4434

    Aug 30, 2013 9:51 PM GMT
    Before I spent money on a doctor or (heaven forbid) a chiropractor, I'd just get a good massage and tell him what hurts. Then take a break from chest and arm work for a week or so. I know it seems hard to do when you've got yourself psyched and in an a rhythm but it sound like you've just been over-training. I do it, too, from time to time, especially when I'm getting results I like. I've had a good massage guy fix things that my doctor, an MRI, and hospital physical therapy people didn't. Ask someone at your gym who's a professional bodybuilder who in town is good for that sort of thing. And good luck. You're getting great results.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Aug 30, 2013 10:04 PM GMT
    Tennis elbow, maybe?
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    Aug 31, 2013 2:14 AM GMT
    KJSharp saidI've been working out now for the past 3 months, seeing significant gains (all while losing 8 pounds!). But, for the past 3 weeks, I've been having trouble in 2 areas, and I don't know what the problems are or what to do about them.

    1) Right forearm. It feels like a tendon in my right forearm burns whenever I do bicep exercises. If you hold your right arm straight out in front of you, the pain is on the lower right side of the forearm about 2 inches away the elbow. I'm having a lot of trouble continuing to make gains with my biceps because of this pain.

    2) Above chest on my left side. Whenever I do the bench press (or any press), the area right around my collarbone burns. The pain is most acute when my arms reach their furthest extension up on the bench press. There is no pain on my right side. I've ceased to make gains on my chest for a week or two; I've been afraid to lift any more weight.

    Any help would be much appreciated!


    Sounds like tendonitis. Look at your lifting form. You can take some ibuprofen to lower inflammation but you are probably injuring yourself through improper technique or have an imbalance.

    A good physical therapist or an orthopedic surgeon will know the right tests to conduct to track it down.
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    Aug 31, 2013 7:27 PM GMT
    Thanks for the responses guys. I appreciate it. I think I'm going to lay off the weights for now - if I go to the gym, it'll only be 2x a week for a while instead of 4x, and I'll only do exercises that cause no pain. In place of working out, I will swim. I'll do this for 2-4 weeks. Hopefully this shift will let the soreness heal, and I will examine my form.

    If the pain returns, I'll seek out medical advice.
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    Sep 01, 2013 7:29 PM GMT
    Hey guys, a followup question:

    If I take 2-4 weeks to (potentially) allow my tendons/body to heal, what are some important steps I can take to keep my muscle gains?

    Should I "overdose" on protein? I've been having 130g of protein per day. I could probably up that to 150-160g pretty easily if that would help me not lose muscle mass while I'm not working out.
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    Sep 17, 2013 7:31 PM GMT
    KJSharp saidI've been working out now for the past 3 months, seeing significant gains (all while losing 8 pounds!). But, for the past 3 weeks, I've been having trouble in 2 areas, and I don't know what the problems are or what to do about them.

    1) Right forearm. It feels like a tendon in my right forearm burns whenever I do bicep exercises. If you hold your right arm straight out in front of you, the pain is on the lower right side of the forearm about 2 inches away the elbow. I'm having a lot of trouble continuing to make gains with my biceps because of this pain.

    2) Above chest on my left side. Whenever I do the bench press (or any press), the area right around my collarbone burns. The pain is most acute when my arms reach their furthest extension up on the bench press. There is no pain on my right side. I've ceased to make gains on my chest for a week or two; I've been afraid to lift any more weight.

    Any help would be much appreciated!


    If you suddenly introduced weight training in your life, your muscles are probably being overworked. If you are going to work out a muscle you also need to do some maintenance work to them (rest, icing, stretches, deep tissue massage).

    The pain at your forearm could be due to tightness of the supinator and brachioradialis muscle (going by the location you mentioned). Give yourself deep massages in the area.

    As far as your chest goes, you are probably also experiencing muscle tightness or strain in that area. You have two chest muscle that originate and insert in the areas on and near the collar bone. What you want is to stretch your pectoralis muscles (google stretches) and I would even do deep tissue massages with your thumb or with the use of a tennis ball in that area when you say it burns. I would also try to reduce the weight and gradually increase over time.

    I hope this helps!
  • Destinharbor

    Posts: 4434

    Sep 17, 2013 8:11 PM GMT
    Tendons, ligaments and bone take longer to grow than muscle and the muscle will stop growth if all of this isn't ready to accept the additional muscle strength. You might try a couple of additional things though it sounds as if you're doing things right. Try BCAA's. They reduce muscle tenderness and help with growth. Yes, add a bit more protein. Try to reschedule your workouts to spread the stress to days only after sufficient rest. For example, I separate chest and shoulder work with a day of legs only. Arms are tough because they're involved with many other body exercises but in general, think of mixing push and pull exercises. Lastly, think of all this as a long, long term goal and be patient. You're doing great.