Working out and bulking up can make you feel good. Both because of the endorphins pumping through your body and also because of how you feel when you see yourself in the mirror. As you start to get bigger, you may also like the extra attention you may be getting. However, it is important to not let our ego get in the way of training safely.
One of the most common problems experienced by those who strength train is joint pain. Years of heavy lifting and abuse can cause serious joint damage. Just as anything you overuse, it wears down over time. Lifting heavy weights can put serious pressure on the joints. And we all know that suffering from joint pain has a serious impact on our ability to train. The one type of injury you don’t want to suffer from is a joint injury as they can take a long time to heal and keep you out of the gym.
Some things that may lead to joint pain and injury:
- Not maintaining the correct posture
- Not warming up
- Improper lifting
- Lack of proper rest and recovery
- Not wearing the correct shoes
- Inadequate nutrition
Preserving Joint Health
Keeping our joints healthy will do us well in the long run. After all, our joints are what help us to move around. Unhealthy joints may become stuck when you move and can result in some serious restrictions. So while you may want to bulk up now and train big, think about what you are doing to your body for the future. That isn’t to say that you shouldn’t train hard and build up your muscle, it just requires you to do it correctly.
#1 Lift Lighter Weights
Activities that are high impact and repetitive put you at a higher risk for damaging cartilage. On the other hand, moderate activity can help reconstruct cartilage. You should try to balance your heavy workouts with light workouts by lifting lighter weights. Muscle strength increases at a faster rate than joint strength, so you should opt for more reps over adding more weight to the bar, even when you feel that you are able to add more weight.
#2 Nourish Your Joints
Part of taking care of our joints is giving them the nourishment they need. Three popular ingredients for joint health are chondroitin, glucosamine, and MSM. Glucosamine is thought to help with the formation and repair of cartilage. Chondroitin is believed to have an anti-inflammatory effect and it also helps give elasticity to our joints. It also helps cushion the joints. These two ingredients are thought to provide even better results when combined. MSM is a source of sulfur which is essential for the building of collagen. These ingredients are mostly obtained through the use of supplements such as Joint Relief by Research Verified. When it comes to choosing a supplement for your joint health, it is important to choose a supplement that is both safe and effective. You should examine the manufacturer (this Research Verified review should help) as well as what the product contains.
#3 Maintain Proper Form
You should always make sure to follow the correct form and posture during any exercise to avoid the risk of injury. If your knees go over your toes when squatting, that can lead to a knee injury. Not keeping your elbows close to your body when benching can put strain on your elbow and shoulder joints. Doing exercises the wrong way for a long time can have a serious impact on our joint health. So take the time to learn the correct form for any exercise that you are doing.
#4 Rest Up
Listen to your body. The saying “no pain, no gain” may be causing more harm for the long-term. You should not have to push through pain when you are doing an exercise, that is usually a signal that something is wrong and you should go easy. So stop and take a break. Make sure you also have rest days to rest your muscles as well as your joints.
We Only Have One Body
As we get older, our body deteriorates. Our muscles get weaker and our joints start to wear down. There is no reason to speed things along by not looking after ourselves. There is also no reason to injure ourselves in the present so that we cannot train and stay healthy. So make sure you workout correctly, rest well, and get the correct nourishment that your body needs.