Bad Joints and Good Warm-Up

Maybe I am getting older (37 now) but maybe my joints are just bad - they always caused some trouble, one way or the other.

I do bench presses, my shoulders hurt. I ride a sportbike, my wrists are killing me. I do squats… actually I couldn’t do squats, because my knees just couldn’t take it. Fortunately, I just discovered knee braces, it’s too early to tell for sure but they seem to make a huge difference.

Anyway, I have to do something, or else I wouldn’t be able to lift at all. I am taking Glucosamin + Chondroitin + MSM twice a day, but I’ve read that it may take a while until any improvement is seen, if there is any improvement at all.

So perhaps I’m not doing the warm-up properly. I currently use the warm-up routine that I learned years ago when I was doing martial arts (karate). Well, that’s perhaps not the best routine for warming up before lifting weights.

Can you guys tell me where I can find a good warm-up routine for people who have issues with the major joints?

Anything else you can think of?

Magnificent Mobility available through here will help you a great deal. If you want to go further with it, check out the Parisi Warm-Up DVD and R-Phase and Neural Warm-ups from Dr. Cobb at Z-Health.

I have rheuamtoid arthritis and know exactly what you are experiencing. Celadrin has helped me a great deal as well Cissus. Very nice combo. Also, make sure to get an ample amount of fish oil in your diet. Add some pineapple too. Hope this helps.

[quote]nikolo wrote:
Magnificent Mobility available through here will help you a great deal. If you want to go further with it, check out the Parisi Warm-Up DVD and R-Phase and Neural Warm-ups from Dr. Cobb at Z-Health.

I have rheuamtoid arthritis and know exactly what you are experiencing. Celadrin has helped me a great deal as well Cissus. Very nice combo. Also, make sure to get an ample amount of fish oil in your diet. Add some pineapple too. Hope this helps.[/quote]

A lot of the Magnificent Mobility stuff can be found on T-Nation in articles by Mike Robertson and Eric Cressey. I’ve just started using the warmup modules described in Mike’s Superior Circuit articles, search for them, they may give you some good ideas.

[quote]florin wrote:
Anyway, I have to do something, or else I wouldn’t be able to lift at all. [/quote]

I’m not trying to pratice medicine without a license and don’t presume to be reaching any conclusions, but you just may have some sort of chronic disorder. I certainly hope not, but it sounds like you’re having more trouble than a proper warmup is likely to fix. Like I say, I may be totally offbase, but it seems like you’re having more than your share of joint discomfort. Are you eating a very low fat diet by chance?

–Tiribulus->

[quote]Tiribulus wrote:
I’m not trying to pratice medicine without a license and don’t presume to be reaching any conclusions, but you just may have some sort of chronic disorder. I certainly hope not, but it sounds like you’re having more trouble than a proper warmup is likely to fix.[/quote]

Chronic, well, perhaps, since the first time I had severe pain in my knee was 15 years ago, when I climbed about 10,000ft on a mountain.
Climbing down on only one good leg was pretty nasty. But the pain disappeared in a couple days.

The thing is, if I don’t lift weights or don’t do anything out of the ordinary, I’m fine.
When I started to lift weigths, I was fine for quite a while. Then, little by little, a bit of pain here, a bit there, it started.
Then I had a motorcycle accident and I stopped lifting for several months and all the pain in the joints disappeared.
When I started lifting again, I was fine for a while, then the issues started to show up again, step by step.

I will have to see a doctor, no doubt. Damn, I hate that.

Not at all. I am careful to get enough protein and I’m trying to avoid eating too much carbs, especially high G.I. stuff. I also try to eat plenty of veggies. But other than that, I pretty much eat whatever happens to fall under the radar. Used to be a “hard gainer”, but started to make progress when I fixed my diet.
I do get plenty of fish / flax oil (or Flameout, when I get a batch of supps from Biotest).

[quote]Chronic, well, perhaps, since the first time I had severe pain in my knee was 15 years ago, when I climbed about 10,000ft on a mountain.
Climbing down on only one good leg was pretty nasty. But the pain disappeared in a couple days.

The thing is, if I don’t lift weights or don’t do anything out of the ordinary, I’m fine.
When I started to lift weigths, I was fine for quite a while. Then, little by little, a bit of pain here, a bit there, it started.
Then I had a motorcycle accident and I stopped lifting for several months and all the pain in the joints disappeared.
When I started lifting again, I was fine for a while, then the issues started to show up again, step by step.

I will have to see a doctor, no doubt. Damn, I hate that.[/quote]

Quick comment from personal experience. My first knee surgery was when I was 16 and my most recent was a couple of years ago (I’m almost 40). Needless to say, I have bad knees.

When you look for a doc, I’d highly suggest you look for an orthopedic surgeon specializing in sports medicine. I went to a couple of docs before choosing the one for my surgery and a main part of my decision was based on the fact that he accepted that I was physically active and not going to stop.

With his clearance, I was in the gym 5 days after my surgery - on crutches. He set very strict limits, but ones I could work with. For example, you can do anything you want as long as there’s no weight on the leg. The next step was, you can stand on the leg, but not do any direct work. Then slowly working up from bodyweight exercises back to my usual routine.

Most every other doc I saw said to lay off all physical activity until fully healed. One even told me to never touch a weight in any form. Ever. I guess he thought that girls can’t lift. Jerk.

Before going to get cut, try Iodoral at about 50mg divided per day for about a week. If it helps, keep up that dose for about 2 months then drop back to 12 to 24mg a day indefinitely.

To put it in perspective, the Japanese population average daily intake of iodine is 20mg/day. The RDA for iodine in the US is based on the dose to prevent goiter.

My joints were a huge problem…almost had to stop oly-lifting. I had tried Glucosamine/Chron./MSM, fish oil, MM DVD warm-ups, knee wraps, rolling, ART. My knees, wrists and feet were chronically painful. Ragnarthehammer in the “Over 70 and new” thread advised addressing iodine deficiency. After about 3 days at the 50mg dose I was stunned at how much better my joints felt. I have had no joint pain for the last 3.5 months at 2x/week lifting. I’m 48.

Check out the “Over 70…” thread, too.

How’s your diet?

Are you getting enough EFA’s in?

I used to have a lot of joint issues myself. Still do to some extent. You didn’t say what your workout routine is, but when I switched my workouts from working each body part twice weekly to once weekly I eliminated a lot of pain. Also, I always make sure my shoulder workout is at least 48 hours from my chest workout. Its all about getting enough rest.

Check out the Movement Prep section of Mark Verstegen’s “Core Performance” book. Excellent program. Best of luck.

Mike

Thanks everyone for the replies.

[quote]Fishhawk wrote:
I used to have a lot of joint issues myself. Still do to some extent. You didn’t say what your workout routine is, but when I switched my workouts from working each body part twice weekly to once weekly I eliminated a lot of pain. Also, I always make sure my shoulder workout is at least 48 hours from my chest workout. Its all about getting enough rest.[/quote]

I am strongly attached to my current routine wich is working each muscle 3 times a week (3 full body sessions per week, 90 minutes each), since I made progress on it like never before. It does seem like the higher the frequency, the faster the progress.

I don’t know, maybe I’m too old for that. Maybe I should cut it back to 3 x 60 min / week with a split routine to work each body part twice per week.

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Another suggestion: get your uric acid blood level checked. I had similar problems, constantly getting sore, thought I was getting old before my time. Allopurinol fixed it.

One thing that hasn’t been mentioned is to make sure you are performing an adequate number of warm up sets before your work sets on your first exercise. For instance, sometimes I warm up on the power rack for twenty minutes before I actually start my work sets for squats.

I do bodyweight squats and various lunges, then stretch the hip flexors, then do wide squats, narrow full squats, good mornings and dynamic lunges with just the barbell, then stretch my hip flexors some more, then repeat a couple times, then I move up to 135 and then 225. Finally, my body feels ready to squat.

I do the same thing for benching sometimes. The older I get and the stronger I get, the more time it takes me to warm up.

I’m not sure why, but I’m better now.

OK, the knees - I know why: I started to use knee wraps for squats, some kind of silly expensive wraps, but they work really well.

As for the rest, I don’t know. About the same time, I started to take Flameout again, instead of regular fish oil, and I started to be much more careful with my warm-up - more thorough and more progressive. Of course, I keep taking glucosamine.

So, bottom line, not sure what made the difference, but something did. I think I’ll just continue along the same lines for quite a while, I must be doing at least one thing right. Or maybe it’s the combination of all these things.