Exhaustion

Yes, I finally found the point where a lot is just too much.

But now I know what is reasonable, so I can modify and try to find the ‘sweet spot’.

I only had practice today because Boss wasn’t able to find studio time to fit me in.  I sort of saw that coming so I wasn’t surprised.  He leaves for vacation tomorrow so everyone is trying to get some time in before he goes.  I am a little upset that I ended up being the ‘odd man out’ as there was a lot I wanted to get done before he left so I can carry one with my own practice.  The only other thing I will say about that is sometimes I feel like I get the bad end of the stick often being the first lesson of the evening as if there are hall issues, it’s me who loses out.  I hope it gets sorted when he gets back and we can find regular consistent lesson times.  It’s of one of many things we need to sort now that I am back at work.

Today was my first day going through the strength training program from the rehabilitative specialist.  It went really well, except that it highlighted that after almost 2 years of no strength training I have lost more than half of my strength.  I am struggling to do a minimum in exercises I had no problem maximizing with high weights before.  I hope once I get into a regular consistent rhythm I will be able to build back up steadily.  I did get a little bit of running in today too–and that probably felt the best out of all that I did today.

I had a hectic day at work, and that was followed by going to the studio to try and work through a new program of exercises.  The verdict? I under-estimated a lot the effect of the strength training on my endurance and strength for dance practice and over-estimated how much I could do at dance.  Not one to give up, I pushed myself to my full limits, and unfortunately a bit beyond.  I probably should have stopped sooner than I did, but I needed to figure out what was reasonable–and definitely I have a better idea.

When I finished, I was proud of what I did, but I was so tired I found myself crying as I wrote in my ‘Book of Positives’.  That just confirmed that definitely–I have done too much today.  So it will be an early night and a full day of recovering from the work I did today before starting over (with much less expectations) on Wednesday to try to find the ‘sweet spot’ that is a balance between building strength and endurance without over-doing things.  It’s one thing to feel tired after a workout, but tonight was definitely exhaustion.

I have come to accept that it’s going to take some trial and error, and I need to remember that I didn’t just start full tilt before I got sick–it took more than a year of gradual increases to get where I was, and it’s going to take that again.  Baby steps and a lot of breathing.

I have more than 2 weeks to work things out on my own before Boss will be back and I know the ‘alone time’ will probably do me good. Sometimes just working through things in pieces on my own helps bring them together.  I had 3 great examples this weekend–I was just taking a moment hear and there to try some things and I figured out what I need to do in jive to make the lifts work (Yay!).  In the end, it was actually a little funny.  It was a matter of just making sure I start with my pelvis forward so I can move it back to lift my legs….I felt a little silly when I realized that was what was in my way!

I also had an interesting success this weekend with CBMP (counter-body movement position).  I have been struggling with it mostly because I just couldn’t figure out what I was doing wrong. Boss said something random when we were working on tango last week and ‘click’ it fell into place this weekend–I need to make sure I keep my left hand back and my upper body facing towards my partner while my lower body moves in the direction we are going.

Which leads to the third and perhaps more significant discovery–I figured out how to move my shoulder blades separately from my core.  This is huge for me because one of the main issues I had in standard was that I always moved everything as one block.  This is great when you are starting out, but makes things like CBMP not work right if your shoulders always stay parallel with your hips.  Sometimes you need to twist them in opposite directions–now I know how to do that–and knowing is half the battle!

It’s amazing the number of things that ‘clicked’ into place just by figuring this out.  My standard position is one, and some movements in paso is another.  Now I just want to try all my standard steps and mark the ones with CBMP so I can make sure I am doing it right.  I also figured out how to stretch from my shoulder blades up without inclining from my lower back.  It’s like discovering a new toy!

So despite the disappointment of not having a lesson, and working myself too hard today, I did have some good positives.  I am eager for Boss to get back from vacation because I feel as though from there the ‘real work’ can really begin.

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