Dreading Starting Over…AGAIN

Confession: This week was my first official workout back in the gym with weights since my 2nd surgery in October. And I was dreading it.

But let me tell you why.

I have been weight-lifting since I was in middle school. Obi-wan made sure I knew proper form and how to put a routine together so that when I was on my own, I wouldn’t be intimidated by my surroundings.

Kiana Tom, my first weight-lifting guru. Courtesy of Obi-wan, of course.

Kiana Tom, my first weight-lifting guru. Courtesy of Obi-wan, of course.

Ever since, I could be found pumping iron (snort) in the weight room at college, in Brooklyn, and now at NYU’s Palladium alongside the undergrads and jocks. I never shied away from lifting with the big boys, even the Broncos, and often found that I was the only gal in many weight rooms throughout my young life.

Wedding day Gun Show.

Wedding day Gun Show.

After this surgery, I dreaded getting back into the gym. I dreaded feeling weak AGAIN. Only being able to lift light weights AGAIN. Being so, so, SOOOOOOO sore AGAIN. Starting from Square One AGAIN.

I feel like I’ve started over so many times this year, I dreaded that feeling yet again in the weight room.

From walking with my drugs to running with my friends, starting over has been hard.

From walking with my drugs to running with my friends, starting over has been hard.

I know that there are many days of crazy soreness ahead as I attempt to build my muscles back up to where they were pre-op. I know that there is frustrating fatigue waiting for me, probably weekly, as I find my new limits.

But I also know that I gotta start somewhere and I gotta start NOW. Well, and I’m allowed to start now, according to my surgeon.

But if not now, when? It’s only going to get harder and harder to force myself back to the gym, so why not this week?

20lbs is what I can do? Then 20lbs it is.

20lbs is what I can do? Then 20lbs it is.

I’m already sore from the hamstring curls, static lunges, abductor raises, tricep pushdowns, straight bar curls, overhead presses, and seated rows I did on Tuesday. Here’s hoping it doesn’t take too long for me to start feeling like the animal I know I can be in the gym 🙂

Do you lift? Have you ever had to start all over again after a long absence? Do you dread the soreness the way that I do? Ugh. There’s sore and then there’s the soreness that only comes from being away for months at a time and having your muscles atrophy substantially to the point of being sore from carrying boxes up and down 4 flights of stairs.

I feel like such a wimp. Here’s to wimpyness!

Now go out and run!

The Case For Weights

Guys, I fell into an L-hole yesterday (“L” for Laundry!) and completely spaced blogging. What is wrong with me? Anyway, bygones. I’m back!

It’s no secret that I love a good lift. When I was 13, Obi-wan introduced me to my first Fitness Icon, Kiana Tom.

Thanks for all the advice, Kiana!

Kiana had a show on FitTV and I learned form and basic exercise technique from her and from Obi-wan himself. Well, them and Ah-nald. I love this book.

"We are here to pump YOU up!"

At that point in my athletic career I was running cross-country, playing basketball, cheerleading, running track and playing softball in the Summers. I was all over the place with my training, which was probably the primary reason that I didn’t suffer from overuse injuries, ummm, EVER.

I learned to get my lift on in this very gym. Way to go, Daddy-o!

When I got to college, I realized that I was unique in my knowledge of proper exercise techniques. I continued to cross-train throughout my marathon career and have only had to take off one month to strengthen a bum glute medius. I ran my best marathon that Fall.

Point is, I credit strength training for keeping me healthy and strong.

Don't be fooled by the skirt and the smile. I'm a BEAST in the weight room!

Physiologically, muscles need to be strengthened before they can be beat up by the mileage required to train for a marathon. Muscles build faster than tendons and ligaments because they have a better blood supply. That’s why long-term, sustained weight-training is the way to go so that the tendons and ligaments have a chance to catch up and get stronger, too.

Excuse me while I grab my 85 pound dumbbells and do some bicep curls (juuuuust kidding, those are Obi-wans' bad boys)

Awesome benefits of weight training:

  1. Builds muscle which can increase the body’s metabolic rate and burn more calories in everyday life.
  2. Stronger body = fewer overuse injuries.
  3. Works the anaerobic capacity of our cardiovascular system to increase the body’s VO2 max )which makes distance running easier).
  4. Helps to increase bone density and prevent osteoporosis.
  5. Cut arms. Perky butt. Hot legs. Seriously, you need more convincing?

So, grab a friend and head to the weight room or a strength-training class. Your body will thank you.

Now go out and run!