Exercises I “Can’t” Do

First things first – I found another article today. This one, however, is from only 2 days ago, so I’m not late to the party, and I am going to praise it rather than rant about it. I really like this article. Too often, I find that articles about the “obesity epidemic” either make it seem like anyone could lose weight if they just followed this one set of particular advice backed up by SCIENCE, or like no one could ever lose weight because statistics say they can’t*. Instead, this guy gets the point across: our knowledge on the link between nutrition, obesity, and other diseases is very limited, there are reasons for these limits that could be addressed if we really wanted to, and the implication is that we can’t fix the “problem” until our knowledge expands. I do have a couple of minor issues with the article – despite his insistence that we don’t know much about the topic, he is acting like the link between diabetes and obesity is obvious – but overall it is refreshing to read an article that doesn’t fall into one of the two camps I mentioned.

Now, on to the topic at hand: exercises that I somehow suck at.

I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately because I was reminded of some of my limits by the stair workout I discussed Friday. Namely, I am terrible at push-ups and lunges. These both baffle me – I can do hundreds of body weight squats, and can do a bazillion push-ups on my knees, but these two moves elude me. I can maybe do one regular push-up before I fail, no matter how many sets I do on my knees; when I do lunges I become wobbly and hurt my knees, though I seem to do lunges slightly better with my right leg forward. Here is my plan to address these issues:

  1. Figure out why I’m having the problems. I think this step could be considered done-ish. I think that there is just too big of a step between knee push-ups and regular ones for me to make the jump, and I need to find something in between to work on for now. The pain in my knee during lunges suggests to me that I lack proper form. The wobbliness and pain together suggest to me that I am probably lacking balanced strength in some muscles somewhere.
  2. Figure out potential solutions. This is the step I am working on now. I remembered that NROLFW suggested incline push-ups over knee push-ups, so I am going to see if that helps. So far, these feel more difficult than doing them on my knees, so hopefully this solution checks out. For the lunges, I am going to start reading up on form and trying to figure out if I have any particular weak muscles that might be leading to my issues that I could try to strengthen with alternative exercises.
  3. Use the solutions to fix the problems and be finally able to make the most of these workouts. Once I figure out solutions, I am going to devote myself to practicing these workouts. I am going to set a goal to do push-ups and lunges 3 times a week, even if I only do like 5 of each (2 times will be as part of my goal to strength train 2 times per week, so I won’t ONLY be doing these moves). My hope is that every time they come up in a workout I won’t feel miserable and panic and just wait for them to be over because they are so difficult for me.

On a more positive workout related note, I went for a (very slightly) faster 5K run in the ice today! I am glad I pushed myself to get out there – now that I got over it and did it one time, the second time was so much easier. I am just hoping that we don’t get the 8-12 inches of snow they are calling for on Thursday. Yeah, right. At least if we do I will get more hours at work since none of my coworkers have the ability to drive in the snow.

This reminds me – because of my work schedule, Kris and I will need to do Valentine’s day on Wednesday (read:tomorrow), after I get off work on Saturday at 8, or on Monday, and we have made zero plans. What should we do?!

*Mini-rant about these statistics: First of all, where does the statistic that 90% (or 95%, or whatever it is right now) of diets fail? Did they take a survey that asked people whether they were on a diet and whether it had worked? I bet 90% of people are constantly on a “diet” that they aren’t really trying very hard at which would really skew that measurement. Second, how long do I have to maintain my weight loss for it to count? One year? Two years? Five years? Until I die?! If I gain weight when I’m pregnant or injured and then lose it again how does that fit into the stats? Sorry, this is the stats nerd in me coming out to yell at others for lying with statistics.


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