You’re a Machine!

Heard that 3 times from Boss tonight.

I am taking it as a good thing :).  I had a another good hard lesson tonight, especially because about 15 mins into the lesson I suddenly started to feel DOMS (Delayed-Onset-Muscle-Soreness) in my hip flexors, inner thighs and glutes from the work I did on Monday.

I have been waiting to feel that, as it’s a sign that I am working my muscles fully so that they are building and strengthening.  DOMS is that feeling you get when your body ‘stiffens up’ after a workout.  If you work consistently, you feel it for about 2 weeks, then your body adapts and you don’t notice it as much.  I was beginning to worry that I wasn’t feeling it last week, but I could tell that things got ‘stepped up’ a little on Monday and it seems I hit the place I need to be.

We focused tonight mainly on standard, with me doing my natural turns in Waltz on my own trying to maintain my position and balance while executing the right technique.  It’s a challenge for me right now to keep my weight forward, so I am having to focus on that a lot.  My feet were much better tonight than on Monday, which is also a good sign.

As I was doing my natural turns, Boss asked me if I knew why I was having moments of instability, or rather from where the unstableness was coming from.  I pointed out that it’s instability in my feet and ankles, not through my core or upper body and he seemed to understand.  I think a few things ‘clicked’ into place for him today–first that I am much more ‘back-weighted’ now without a belly to counter-balance my bum (for lack of better explanation), so I am having to work to bring my upper body forward and my knees flexed to keep my weight forward over the balls of my feet, and second that my feet and ankles are having some issues adjusting to the new distribution of my weight and how to move it.

He didn’t mention anything about shortening lessons or wearing different shoes, and I think after the discussion about my feet and ankles, he understands why I want to keep working in the higher less stable shoes.  I will verify that at my lesson on Friday though.

In addition to the natural turns, we did an exercise I will call ‘diamond walks’ together, again focusing on my position while moving in CBM.  Basically we are walking in CBMP in all 4 directions making a diamond pattern on the floor.  Tonight things started to really ‘click’ for me during this exercise as far as my position and the wheels are starting to turn.

When it comes to position in standard, I can really tell that things are starting to finally fall into place for me.  I am getting into the right position more consistently and I can tell when I am not.  I can feel the stretches through my body (which I couldn’t before) and I am starting to build a good understanding of what that position feels like.  Boss seems pretty happy with how things are going.

Aside from the work in standard, we also went through the samba 3-step turns again today and they went much better than Monday and were much closer to where they are suppose to be.  Boss also had me run through the beginning of my rumba routine at the end of my lesson tonight to see if there were any changes since I have been working more specifically on my rumba walks (which seem to be coming along slowly).  It seems he saw some changes because he was pretty happy with what I did.

In fact, Boss was telling me that after the last 2 weeks he now has a pretty good idea of what he wants to work on and focus on.  Friday we are going to go through my exercises and make some changes and adjustments to align with what he wants me to focus on now, and we might be able to sit down and decide more specifically what the goals are in each style for the next little while.

Aside from telling me that I am a machine, Boss also gave another unexpected high compliment (which is pretty rare for him) in saying he ‘sees that things are going to progress fairly quickly because of how I work’.  I don’t know if it’s true or not, but it was interesting to hear him say that.  I do know that right now there are a lot of little things my body just needs to adjust to and that I seem to be adapting to quickly.  Whatever the reason, I hope this momentum continues and I intend to keep working.

It was good and interesting to see the enthusiasm from Boss tonight.  After Monday, I wasn’t quite sure what to think, but it seems I have redeemed myself tonight.

I didn’t get my practice time in today because I had a meeting, but I hope to get into the studio tomorrow to make up for it.  It’s not ideal to practice the same exercises two days in a row but it is necessary this week, and will be next as well.

I finally got my appointment for my drain placement and it will be next Friday afternoon, meaning I won’t be doing a lesson or practicing that night.  I can’t believe that I have to wait that long to get the pressure in my belly relieved, but that’s when the appointment is.  At least I am uncomfortable, and not really in pain.  They are going to try and fit me in sooner, but I don’t hold out much hope for that.

In the meantime, I am still taking everything one day at a time, working as hard as I can and hoping things continue as they have been.  I am very curious to see what suggestions Boss has for exercises on Friday, and I am curious in general where he intends my focus to be.

Finally this week I feel like I am knuckling down and getting back to good work.


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