Q: I hurt my wrist a while back and it’s taking a while to heal up. I quit working out and it feels better but not 100%. I was told to get on an anti-inflammatory, which I still have from that time. Will there be any side effects to lifting when taking prescription an anti-inflammatory?
A: Well, on one hand, inflammation is not your friend, so any opportunity to minimize or reduce inflammation is key. But the downside to taking them, and worst thing possible, is doing any repetitive exercise with weight, because you’ll feel good during and you might hurt yourself more without realizing it. People who have leg pain and take ibuprofen (Advil, Nuprin) will go out on a long run without really having a clue whether their body is weakening or not. I would try wrist wraps for sure, and see if you can take an anti-inflammatory well before training (such as 3-6 hours earlier) to get the benefit, but not mask pain or swelling that could be a good indicator of something going wrong. The best time to take an NSAID is after you train, not before. So you get the maximum benefit of water build up from slight injury or irritation. You can also do a specific strength-building program for your wrist, in taking each workout as an opportunity to gradually build up in weight. So, instead of 4 sets per exercise, do 6-8, but only a few reps and gradually take on more weight so that these mini sets accomplish the same number of overall sets and reps, but you build up gradually in weight.
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