Chest and Shoulders Stretching Exercises for fellow beginners

  • I wasn't aware that we were supposed to use the same weight used at level 7 for level 9 repetitions ( I asked and a fellow BFLers told me on here). I hit the gym yesterday doing as told and I was terribly sore. I was not aware there are any chest stretch exercises. But today I felt my chest muscles for the first time in my life all pumped up and painful to the touch. So I found these exercises for the chest to prevent this from happening again.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NCHH3Rl2jhc&NR=1&feature=fvwp

    Shoulder stretching exercises:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NgVzIEUfXj0&feature=relmfu

    I have read it repeatedly that we need to warm up before the exercise, and stretch after the exercise.

    I see everyone in the gym stretching their lower bodies and backs.. but never their upper bodies... hmmmmm

    Courage isn't lack of fear. It's our ability to carry on despite our fear

  • Hi Ruby4444,

    I always warm-up and stretch my upper body (and lower body) before lifting.  It is the only thing about the BFL plan that I disagree with.  The BFL theory is that by starting out at a lighter weight, that will get you warmed up etc before moving on to heavier weights.

    However, having said that....  your chest muscles are supposed to be sore!!  That's a good thing and if you're hitting your 10's (which it sounds like), stretching isn't going to take that away.

    As far as the lifting goes, everyone needs to individualize their routine to their own intensity level.  I think most people have to back down one weight after level 8 because we are going from 6 reps to 12 reps.  And there is no rest after those 12 reps when we switch to another exercise for that same muscle group.

    I love that soreness after starting new exercises!  Bask in it!!!  You earned it.

    Laurie, 2010 Body-for-Life Champion 46+

    Never underestimate your power to change.

  • Hello all! I am actually against stretching right before lifting. Stretching actually weakens your muscles since it loosens them. Its good to stretch before cardio, but not before lifting. It will prevent you from lifting at your true limit.

    What I have found that it works for me is to get in the dry heat room for about 10 mins, that will warm up your muscles, then I do cardio for 5mins, to get the blood pumping right into the muscles.

    The reason you start at a low weight in the first two sets is to help you get your muscles ready for the heavy lifting. You should start forcing your muscles at the 4 set, thats why you only do 6 reps.

    Soreness is a good thing. It is the sign that you didnt waste your work-out. Like the book says, the magic happens after the work-out when your muscles are relaxed and resting. Just keep your protein intake high to make sure your muscles recover faster.

  • Thanks Georgia and Josue. I spoke to a professional track and circuit coach today about it. The conversation was in a foreign language and this is my best translation of what he said. He said that  there are two types of stretches. A type of stretch that is "centric" that tackles any possible tightness in muscles like the ones used with medicine balls and hard foam rolls, these need to be done before the workout, then the type of stretches that elongate the muscles that we need to do after the workout, which are the stretches that people normally do in the gym.

    I wonder if that makes any sense.

    Courage isn't lack of fear. It's our ability to carry on despite our fear