I poke an exploratory finger into my pectoral muscle. Yep. Still sore.
It all started a few days ago. In a quest to achieve my admittedly too vague New Year’s resolution to “get healthy,” I decided that I would start exercising. I struggled into a couple of pairs of sports bras, stuffed my hooves into a twisted old pair of running shoes, and hit the treadmill. After a few minutes of walking, I started shuffling, then running, then sprinting. After a minute or two of this, I slowed back down and then started the whole process over again. I repeated the whole rhythmic sequence four or five times and hopped off the treadmill. Easy! Well, sort of. I was out of breath, but that’s good, right? I didn’t go flying off the back of the treadmill or throw up during the sprints, so I counted this workout as a resounding success. This “getting in shape” stuff is going to be a piece of cake! Why didn’t I do it sooner?!
The next morning, I wake up bright and early to start lifting weights. This will be a cinch! I walk on the treadmill for a mile to warm up, and then lunge, squat, and hamstring curl for a half hour. Ok, I’m breathing pretty heavy, but nothing I can’t handle. Simple!
The next morning, I roll out of bed, shuffle to the bathroom, and… realize that I am so sore that I can’t sit on the toilet. What the what?! Everything from my belly button down hurts. I poke myself in the butt cheek with my finger and wince at the waves of pain that radiate outward from my sore muscle. After a few minutes of experimenting, I figure out that I can grab the counter with one hand, the edge of the tub with the other, and gently lower myself down. I wince. Even the weight of my own body pressing down on my glutes is enough to make me cringe. But this is good, I assure myself. It means you really worked those muscles! Right?! They’re now filled with little micro tears that will heal up even stronger than before! I keep telling myself that as I struggle off of the toilet.
When my next weight lifting day rolls around, I am still sore. But it will be ok, I think to myself, because I’m just doing upper body stuff today. I warm up on the treadmill again and hit the weights. I start with some lat pull downs and progress to push-ups. Wham! I thud on to the floor after only three push-ups on my toes. Again, what the what?! I used to be able to bang out 60 of these babies at a time! Sigh… Needless to say, it’s been awhile. I finish with some bicep curls and tricep extensions, and then call it a day.
At this point, my arms are feeling a little funny. Jelly-like might be a good way of describing it. But I chalk it up to being an exceptionally good workout and head off to get cleaned up. The problem starts with my sports bra. Specifically that I can’t get out of it. It’s like my arms are refusing to work. At all. Half in and half out of my sports bra, arms akimbo, I look at myself in the mirror. Is this what it has come to? I am so out of shape that after one upper body workout, I can’t even get out of my sports bra? The answer of course is yes. And this fact is really driven home only a few minutes later when I try to lower myself into the tub. Let’s just say that my arms choose this moment, this exact moment, when I’m weak and naked and hovering over a pool of water to completely give out. And I go crashing into the tub at terminal velocity. Water goes everywhere.
I stare up at the ceiling and settle in. It’s going to be a long year.