Muscle development

Did you know there’s lots of things you can do with an incline bench and a Smith machine? I did some of them today. They hurt, but in the good way. I’ll probably do them again next week. I finally figured out that, in order to keep my shoulders from being unhappy, I need to keep my elbows in towards my midline. Good form, I can has it?

My hamstrings are still a mess. I skipped anything that engaged that set of muscles, and gave them a good foam-rollering and stretch. The cruddy thing is that having soreness there means the entire back of my legs is tight– which means my feet bother me. This is definitely a high priority thing to fix. On the plus side, I ran a mile fast and everything warmed up and then I could stretch nicely.

Every time I do a mile run I wind up thinking about high school gym class. Twice a year, we’d all go out to the track and be forced to run around it 4 times. (Of course, we never trained for this– we were just expected to magically be able to do it.) I wasn’t good at sports (the days we played basketball were a special kind of torture) and I hated gym, just like most kids. My senior year I opted out of normal gym class and took a "muscle development" class where we lifted weights and learned about anatomy and muscles and nutrition. (We had single-gender gym class, and my year was the first year that girls were offered this class. Why would girls want to be strong???) That was the first time in my life I looked forward to gym class– I enjoyed working out in the weight room with the other girls. We all had a lot of fun and got a lot stronger! And that year I ran my mile runs much faster than I ever had– I was in pretty good shape!

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