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Pulled Pec recovery questions

macgyver

macgyver

TID Board Of Directors
Nov 24, 2011
1,382
650
#1
Man....seems an all too common thread lately. I am dealing with this as well.

I need advice on coming back from this and how quick to take it.

In my almost 20 years in the gym I never pulled a pec (except once deadlifting...srs)

I took 2+ years off benching, but after some recent shoulder therapy work, I felt like my shoulder was good enough to bench again.
I felt VERY good and on my second workout I was doing some nice paused controlled reps with 315 in the 5-7 range like I had never left off. On my second set I felt it pull on my 5th rep lowering and I let it all the way down quickly and just did not even try to press. No POP, but I knew it was a good pull. I rolled it off myself ;).

I iced and motrin. No bruising or swelling.

That was almost a month ago.

Within a week I was back benching 135. Two weeks and I was working 225 with no issues.

So....this has been a month and I decided to try a 5/3/1 format for bench and see what I could do over time. Since 5/3/1 starts conservative, I figured it would be a good way to ease back into benching.

My sets for my first week were
225x5
255x5
285 x5+

On the 285 set, I felt great! I think I was headed for 13 range it was going so easy. On the 9th rep, my pec pulled again! (on the eccentric again) Thank goodness I was benching at home and had safties I could set the bar down on. As soon as I felt the pull I lowered it. I did not pull it bad. I could probably do a pushup this AM but I can feel it it is tight.


-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Cliffs:
-took 2 years off benching, pulled pec 2nd working back (and never pulled a pec before) Minor pull
-Recovered for a month and started a conservative 5/3/1 layout. Pulled my pec on my first 5+ set. (minor pull)



I'm 46yo. How long to rest/recover and rehab before I can safely add some weight to benching. Any tips on getting back to that place. Eg...maybe staying w/ 225 for a while and doing lots of volume or using speed reps to load the muscle a little without the tenions on the eccentric.

Open to advice on recovering and thoughts on best way to take it from here. I have dodged a bullet twice I feel and dont want to do anything dumb!
 
ITAWOLF

ITAWOLF

VIP Member
Dec 9, 2010
934
368
#2
rest is all you can really do
if its just a lvl 1 i would give it a mth
but if there is a tear ---better wait at least 3 mths
ice is good at first thing

i like heat after first week
take ur time ---leave ego etc behind
otc meds can help

Mayo can really chime in---he had the big BOOM!!!

on my tear ---i was back to doing chest --but only slow incline push ups
have never pushed past 410lb since ---hell im old
and have big boobs lol

i would do alot more cable work --just my op

rest is key

i was 46 when i popped mine
10yrs later im still rolling and feel great---no need to impress the ladies ---- i show them pics of massage partner--Lady Bova and bam we are good to go-- they know im in good hands :)
 
SocioMachiavelli

SocioMachiavelli

VIP Member
May 30, 2018
85
26
#3
Never tore a pec so I can't really comment on the rehab, it's good to see that you're back training though.
 
macgyver

macgyver

TID Board Of Directors
Nov 24, 2011
1,382
650
#5
rest is all you can really do
if its just a lvl 1 i would give it a mth
but if there is a tear ---better wait at least 3 mths
ice is good at first thing

i like heat after first week
take ur time ---leave ego etc behind
otc meds can help

Mayo can really chime in---he had the big BOOM!!!

on my tear ---i was back to doing chest --but only slow incline push ups
have never pushed past 410lb since ---hell im old
and have big boobs lol

i would do alot more cable work --just my op

rest is key

i was 46 when i popped mine
10yrs later im still rolling and feel great---no need to impress the ladies ---- i show them pics of massage partner--Lady Bova and bam we are good to go-- they know im in good hands :)

Thanks man for sharing the experience. I was not thinking I would need to go out to 3 mos but I was probably pushing it only being a month. My thoughts were 5/3/1 starts out so slow that I would have a chance to build into the stress.

What has me freaked out is how it comes out of nowhere. I have little doubt if I had tried to fight it, I could have made the injury much worse. The first time w/ 315 I was in my gym and did not even want to ask for help since I knew trying to press at all would hurt and I doubt your average gym go-er would be capable of rowing 315 off me. I just gathered my thoughts, and decided to slowly roll it down my body to my lap. I sat up and lowered it to the floor. I had contemplated tipping it, but I thought I could do it a little more gracefully ;)

The second time I was in my home gym which thank goodness I bench in a walk-in rack with adjustable safties. I have them set about 1" below my chest so I can just lower to the stops and flatten my arch and it is a non-issue.

Funny thing, is I have NEVER had to set the weight down....like ever. Just goes to show how quick this can come on. Again, I think if I tried to fight it, I would have injured myself MUCH worse.

I have not really pushed myself in 3+ years benching but with the shoulder rehab work I had done, I figured I could have a little fun. I have never tried to be the strongest guy, but I have spent my life training mostly for strength with my build being the result of much of that desire to improve over time. I have smartened up though as a little age has come on and realized I have to throttle my desire a little. But it not something I think will ever go away. I will just have to learn to manage my competitive desires (with myself) as time goes on.

Never tore a pec so I can't really comment on the rehab, it's good to see that you're back training though.
Yep, Spinal fracture healed, but still have disk issues. I bought a reverse hyper for my house and that seems to be helping A LOT! I squatted 495 last week without pain. Only my 3rd squat workout in 2 years. But my back went out with 225 the week before, so I am using a belt and really focusing on keeping my abdominal pressures up. I think I am going to run a 5/3/1 for squats as well. As I mentioned, the past 3 years I have done more 'bodybuilding' type volume workouts and abandoned strength work for the most part. My car accident 5 months ago kind of re-lit the fires I have to do some strenght training. Having a goal to focus on will help me in my recovery.

I read this as pulled pork, LOL


No good advice besides rest bro, sorry.
Ha! No pulled pork here!!! But down south we are all vinegar based not that tomato based crap people try to pawn off as BBQ! Your post reminded me I am overdue for a good bbq lunch. Might have to hit some up today before I start watching cals again. Trying to get all my good foods in :D
 
ITAWOLF

ITAWOLF

VIP Member
Dec 9, 2010
934
368
#6
JUST HAVE TO LISTEN TO UR BODY

my pec area swells fast if i push it --which to me means that its getting worked hard around the old injury --so i have to watch it
 
macgyver

macgyver

TID Board Of Directors
Nov 24, 2011
1,382
650
#7
JUST HAVE TO LISTEN TO UR BODY

my pec area swells fast if i push it --which to me means that its getting worked hard around the old injury --so i have to watch it

Thanks man. I am 2 weeks from the second 'pull' and was able to go up to 225 this week, but it did not feel good and I just backed down and benched with 135 and did lots of slow MMC stuff. Cables felt OK as did reverse grip incline (with 135).

I will be more patient this time around. Again, the scary part for me was how quickly and out of nowhere it came from. Had I tried to struggle through it and re-rack, I am sure I could have made this MUCH worse.


It really is frustrating since I finally think I have my shoulder back in a good place to bench again for the first time in 3 years. But I rushed back too quickly and even though my strength was still essentially there, I should have taken longer to build back to heavier weights. You would think I would have learned by now since I am in my latter 40's, but the 'fun' of working out gets the better of me at times still. I really do enjoy this and happy to be celebrating 10 years back of steady training!

Thanks for sharing.
 
ITAWOLF

ITAWOLF

VIP Member
Dec 9, 2010
934
368
#8
Thanks man. I am 2 weeks from the second 'pull' and was able to go up to 225 this week, but it did not feel good and I just backed down and benched with 135 and did lots of slow MMC stuff. Cables felt OK as did reverse grip incline (with 135).

I will be more patient this time around. Again, the scary part for me was how quickly and out of nowhere it came from. Had I tried to struggle through it and re-rack, I am sure I could have made this MUCH worse.


It really is frustrating since I finally think I have my shoulder back in a good place to bench again for the first time in 3 years. But I rushed back too quickly and even though my strength was still essentially there, I should have taken longer to build back to heavier weights. You would think I would have learned by now since I am in my latter 40's, but the 'fun' of working out gets the better of me at times still. I really do enjoy this and happy to be celebrating 10 years back of steady training!

Thanks for sharing.

SURE DOES BRO
the older we get the more we know and try to plug in
and i believe i saw more change to my body in my 40s then any other time

just so u know everything slows down......a scratch takes longer to heal etc
dont try to fix the past but build the now
i think most people dont see the end until they get to late 40s or early 50s
time is flying ....so make everything count
unless ur a pro or get paided for your body ---dont worry about the weight of it all ....just get in there and move
 
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