@Bigiron: I’m not CT, but I think you will find this helpful.
#1 Figure out why you tore your muscle. Can you control your pelvis and ribcage? Are your hips misaligned (this is more common than you might think). I’ve had great success finding a very good chiropractor to get wellness adjustments from.
#2 Are you missing mobility anywhere? I really like joint distractions, because when the joint is properly positioned all the surrounding structures function properly, and done correctly they only take about 2 minutes to do. If done properly you can do more in 2 minutes with a joint distraction than months of static stretching. I also really like Eccentric Isometrics to properly program your movement pattern with your nervous system. There was a great article about this recently.
#3 When you start back you want proper positioning on your movement 3 sets of 25 reps (Bill Starr said this years ago, but personally I’ve never seen anything as effective). Listen to your body and never workout until you are properly warmed up. I know you know this, but sometimes it’s good to hear it.
Every time you move, especially with weights you ingrain a movement pattern, make sure yours is good and you start in an ideal position. How good is your squat? Would feel comfortable staking your reputation on a YouTube video properly explaining the squat? In my opinion your form and understanding should be that good.
How do you breathe when working out?
Somewhere along the line something is off, the body can only adapt to what you do to it.
I’d immagine your hips are slightly rotated and one is higher than the other.
I hope this gets you thinking so you can diagnose the true cause.
Injury can make you a better lifter.
Thanks for the very detailed answer, Sput. I always work on mobility as a warmup, but I’m sure there’s always room for improvement. Unfortunately, I’ve been sitting more at work lately, which I don’t like. Just part of the job. That may have something to do with it.
I’m also very conscious when I’m lifting on trying to have perfect form, but it very well could be that I am not moving properly. I should video my squat. I have had it analyzed by both an Olympic lifting coach and an ex- powerlifter and neither saw any issues. That doesn’t mean that I was squatting perfectly that day!
Once it starts to heal back up, which I’m hoping won’t be too long, I will “go back to the beginning” as they say and really work on my form.