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Shoulder weakness, irritation and pain?

Question: Shoulder weakness, irritation and pain?

Hello all,

I realise that shoulder injuries are extremely common within sports and especially weight lifting. But after doing some research as to what my specific injury could be, I am very confused as there are many possibilities of what it could be.

I am 21 and I have been weight lifting on and off for around 5 years. Apart from some lower back and hamstring strains I have experienced, I have never before injured my shoulder.

Now as to what resulted in this injury is quite odd .. I wouldn't say the particular workout (which caused the injury) was any more intense or straining on my shoulders than any other workout i have had in the past. The only difference I can point out was that I was consuming a sample of BCAA's during the workout. I was front squatting (heavy) then quickly followed by pullups and dips after every set of front squats. I was doing this with minimal rest in between sets. I could definitely feel as if I was recovering faster in between sets which motivated me to conduct my workout with minimal rest (can i contribute this to the BCAA's?). The remainder of the workout was fine; I felt great throughout the entire day, I wasnt in pain at all and I fell asleep later that night with no troubles.

The next morning however, I woke up with an excruciating amount of pain in my left shoulder. Any movement of my left arm would cause much sharp pain. At first I thought I just slept wrong, but this certainly wasnt the case. Over the past week, it has gradually been improving as I have not done any workout which would cause strain on my shoulders. It is now day 8 since the injury; and while I dont feel pain as such, my left shoulder is still weak and feels very irritated whenever I stretch it or move it in certain ways. Most notably, when I attempt to do pushups, this causes the most amount of pain on my shoulder while there is little pain when I attempt to do pullups. When I rotate my shoulder and elbows around in a circular motion, I notice a grinding/crunching sound but again, no pain really.. just weakness and irritation. Friends think I have slightly torn my rotator cuff while others think I have just strained it from over-training.

Any idea what injury I have? What should I do for the time being to allow faster recovery? SHould I be stretching it and keeping my shoulder somewhat active or should I completely rest it without even trying to stretch it?

Any advice and clarification would be greatly appreciated