Sunday, April 18, 2010

Wagon 1.2: Strength Training

I've been busy working on my little self-improvement plan, as you may recall from last month's post "I Think I Fixed my Wagons".  

I gave myself a full month to get on Wagon 1.1: Stretching. I'm trying to re-establish my daily habit of stretching each morning.  One of my pitfalls is that, due to hypermobility, and probably also due to my personal tendency to be a perfectionist, I tend to stretch too much, which, in turn, causes me pain for days or even weeks following.  The pain, in turn, prevents me from doing stretches because I'm afraid to hurt myself further.  With all this in mind, I've been dutifully doing my little stretches each morning - sometimes more, sometimes less, depending on how I feel.  After a month of this, I think I'm ready to move on to the next mini-wagon, which will focus on building back my lost muscle mass.

I've started mixing in a few of the isometric and other exercises that help with muscle tone and strength already, so I know I can do them.  I wrote down a few, to remind me in case I get fibrofog.  Among them are these:
  • Place palms together and push both arms together, resisting motion
  • Hook both hands together in front and pull arms apart, resisting motion
  • Put hands on forehead and move head toward hand, resisting motion (repeat on sides of head and back of head)
  • Put hand on lap, in sitting position and move leg up, resisting motion (repeat for other leg)
  • Wall push-ups at a slight angle (I can increase the angle as I get stronger)
  • Use the wall as back support and slide down to sit on a pretend chair
  • Leg squats
I did some of these after stretching this morning.  I am going to give myself another month to get this new habit going and see if my muscle strength starts to return a bit.  I am expecting some soreness and setbacks from overzealous days, but I hope to do better in the long run.

I'll check back in another month to report on my progress and embark on Wagon 1.3: Endurance Training.