Pyramids, bloody hands and 'A Month of Sundays' : it's July, after all
The struggle is real. So very real.
The re-opening of society is in full bloom in Montreal, sort of. We remain beset by liability waivers, mandatory masks, social distancing…sort of, I guess?
It’s a bunch of mixed messages, and as a person who lives here, I have to wonder sometimes about the wisdom of some of the extreme measures we have taken. My return to the nutritional wagon continues apace. My return to choking down epic amounts of spinach, broccoli and chicken breasts, along with egg whites and protein shakes galore. Goodbye Humpty Dumpty Party Mix. You were a good friend for a few weeks there.
Let’s use Friday as an example of how lifting has changed for me.
If it’s Friday, that means it’s shoulders day in bodybuilding parlance. The shoulders are both an easy workout in that they are relatively uncomplicated to train, but hard in that they are small muscles, and have to be trained in three directions. So, while the brain work is largely unchallenging. The same cannot be said for the muscle work. I routinely do a pyramid (meaning 10 sets of each weight lifting exercise in ascending and then descending weights. For example, in dumbbell shoulder presses, I did , 45, 50, 55, 60, and 65, then 65, 60, 55, 50 and 45, with reps increasing as the weights drop. It’s…not really a lot of fun.
Not until I look in the mirror, then I feel pretty good about it. On a great day of shoulder workouts, driving away from the gym should be a little bit of a challenge.
Additionally, you might find this link interesting if you needed any reason to get off the elliptical and pick up a dumbbell.
In other news, my surgically repaired right quadriceps muscle is also getting a heck of a lot better. I suppose it has been this whole time, but this week in particular, I noticed a marked difference in my straight line speed and my ability to pick up my feet and knees. It weas a pretty dramatic uptick in athletic ability. I was feeling really, really good about my body and how things were progressing until I sliced my hand on an equipment bin when distributing football equipment about 10 days ago.
After that, I had to go into single-arm mode for a lot of exercises and had to resort to doing legs every 72 hours in order to accomplish my workout goals, which in the short term are : tire my body out until I am comfortable with the idea I’ll sleep well enough to function tomorrow morning.
That’s it, really. But having sliced the palm of my right hand makes me a little more grateful for all the great things I’m able to do with it. As of today, nine days after the fact, I can resume lifting exactly the way I would like to lift, and that feels amazing. The hardship of April and May and the successes of June have set me up for the summer of my life, despite having lived through 43 of them to this point.
It’s warm out and the weather is beautiful, and July is a joyous time of year. A good time for fires in backyard firepits and S’mores; for walks and bike rides; paddleboarding, swimming, boating and relaxing; reading and recharging our personal batteries; going to the beach and tanning, and fun times with friends; time for a splendid meal in a great restaurant, and really, anything else you might imagine. Sangria. Steak. We’ve been inside for so long. Time to get out. Time to heal. Time for optimism and joy and all that good stuff.
Cause August is coming. ‘A month of Sundays,’ a teacher friend once told me.
He’s not wrong. So let’s live like it’s July for a couple more weeks.