Making It Worse

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jul 08, 2008 6:58 PM GMT
    Long story short, I've grown up as a "nerd" and have little facilitated experience in the gym. When I'm at my best I'm able to get to the gym 6 days a week. Lately, I'm starting to think that that's not such a good thing in my case...

    I ran into an old friend last week who mentioned to me that it's possible to overwork a section of your body, and this mal-development could lead to bad posture. I work my chest too much (and perhaps even improperly), and the front of my shoulders are pulling forward, which actually makes me look weaker than I did before I started working out.

    Another problem I'm having is with my legs. I ran three miles over the weekend which felt great, but the muscle between my shin and my calf got aggravated, and after working out my legs today, I noticed that the outside of my knee was compensating for this. It hasn't popped out yet, but walking up the stairs today was problematic. When I looked at myself in the mirror today, I noticed that both of my knees are pulling inward - like the opposite of being bowlegged.

    I can take pictures of the problem areas, but I was wondering if someone experienced and knowledgeable would be willing to take a look at some photos of me in order to help me 1)prevent injury to my knees in particular 2)help me target these areas with workouts that balance and distribute the development properly, and 3)offer any additional advice to my case. I know it's a lot to ask, but anyone who reads this, and is willing to help, I'd greatly appreciate.

  • Bunjamon

    Posts: 3162

    Jul 08, 2008 7:40 PM GMT
    Dude, it sounds like you need to stop exercising for the time being, go to a doctor and get that stuff looked at. After you get everything checked out, get yourself 2-3 sessions with a trainer so that s/he can show you how to properly use the equipment at your gym and exercise without overstressing any muscles of ligaments.
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    Jul 08, 2008 7:48 PM GMT
    I agree fully with talking to a doctor and a trainer. Those of us answering in the forums will, generally, know less than those professionals, and aren't seeing you in person. As a quick pass, though:

    1) You need to work your back as much as you work your chest. Otherwise you will find yourself hunching forward automatically, and will throw your spine out of alignment. Rear delt fly to balance out the pec fly, rows to balance out the bench presses, etc.

    2) Most gyms will have a hip adductor/abductor machine, though you can do the same thing with cables, or possibly even pushing a plate weight across the floor. Essentially, you either squeeze your legs together pushing against weight, or you spread them out pushing against weight. (one for abduction, one for adduction). This can be used to correct the neutral position of your knees/feet when you're standing, which I think might help keep your knees properly aligned while climbing stairs and the like.
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    Jul 08, 2008 8:17 PM GMT
    Thanks for the advice.

    A few months ago I stopped doing hip abductions - I have a rather large "manhood", and when my inner thighs become too large, it makes other things like walking uncomfortable...

    I don't have health insurance right now, so seeing a doctor isn't going to happen any time soon, but I do have access to a personal trainer.

    Thanks again.
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    Jul 08, 2008 8:18 PM GMT
    I heartily agree with the previous posters. Go see a doctor and a trainer.

    I had similar issues myself. My shoulders have been rolling forwards for years, from all of my work sitting at a computer all day. Spending more time developing my chest than my back has definitely made that worse.

    Building up your back is a must at this point. I would suggest not doing any chest stuff for a couple of months, until your back is much more strongly developed. I would also suggest working on both your internal and your external rotators, as well as your shoulders. For myself, my shoulder capsule is extremely tight and small. My trainer suggested working my internal rotators to make them bigger and stronger. He thinks this will help overall, which is quite different from what my chiropractor and physiotherapist suggested. Based on his experience with injuries, I'm going to take his word.

    Something else you can do is check out the injuries forum on A lot of people have had similar issues there, I'm sure.

    And again, regardless of what I or anyone else has said, go see a doctor and a trainer.
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    Jan 20, 2009 2:58 AM GMT
    I can assure you that I am knowledgeable in the area.

    You should be very wary of causing trauma to the more massive muscle fibers in your chest; worse, your tendons. I have a shoulder injury caused about four years ago simply from doing too much bench press. not too much weight, but I was overworking it. Eventually I noticed a pain in my shoulder that only sugery can fix. I strongly suggest that you learn new exercises to entertain you desire to lift weights while taking some stress off of your muscles.

    Secondly, if your posture is truely effected so much that your shoulders slump in, I suggest you take time off. Also, you must stretch at least your chest muscles during your workouts. Muscle fibers will stay tensed and some people will even suffer from cramping that is both chronic and painful.

    If your calf muscles hurt when after or when you run you are probably running on your toes. It will take time to teach your body to do this, especially if you've been running in poor form for a while, but the key is "ball to toe." there are three phases of running, the catch, support, and drive. I think wikipedia has a good article on this, just be aware of what your body is going through when you run. Injuries from running are VERY common and are mostly a result of poor running form. Practice good form. If your knees are hurting, especially deep within the joint, you must both allow yourself rest because ligaments (connects muscle to bone) do take alot of stress there and injuring them is both easy and completely detrimental. Also, a good joint supplement is one of the best preventative measures you could take. Even a good omega 3 supplement will help with inflamed joints.

    Hope this helps a little. There is much more to this, so I suggest you find some good resources.