Friday, Feb. 25, 2005
Can't. Move. Arms.
Hurts. To. Breathe.
Back. Two billion muscles. All sore.
I'm blaming Paula for this because she's the one who planted the notion that there could be some sort of assisted pull-up machine. She is an evil, evil woman.
My gym does not have such a machine, but this morning I roamed around it looking for ways to make one for myself. My eyes fell upon the stretchy resistance bands the Pilates class uses.
The handles I'm doing my pull-ups on stick out from the machine like wheelbarrow handles. The resistance bands have "D" handles on each end which means I could fold a band in half, slide its "D" handles over the pull-up handle and voilą I had a little stretchy loop in which to slide a knee. Put one band on each handle and I had
I discussed it with my trainer. She thought it was wacky, but she's always up for a challenge. We couldn't find any information on how much weight one of these bands was designed to take, so we decided to go with the highest resistance band the gym had, one about half an inch thick.
I dragged the weightlifting bench to the pull-up station and put the bands on the pull-up handles to make a loop for each leg. I was able to get one leg into a loop myself, but once that leg was in the air I had to hold the pull-up handles to support myself so my trainer had to help me wrestle my other leg into the other loop.
The resistance bands had to stretch quite a bit to get down to my knee level so this wasn't a simple thing to do, especially since we were both laughing pretty hard at how silly we looked doing this.
But it worked.
The bands took just enough of my weight that if I tried really, really hard I could do ten full pull-ups. Getting out of the loops for a rest without having highly elastic resistance bands ricocheting about and giving either my trainer or me huge, painful welts proved to be a challenge, but we managed it.
I can't begin to tell you how euphoric I felt. Part of this was the huge rush of endorphins coursing through my body. There's not a lot of body that doesn't get used doing pull-ups. As your arms, shoulders and back muscles tire, your body calls in other muscle reinforcements, including your butt and abs.
My back itself felt exquisite. Seriously. Totally stretching everything out like that gives an amazing sense of well-being.
And of course there was the fun of inventing the MarnCo Assisted Pull-up Machine.
I immediately had to do another set, of course. My trainer warned me that I would be sore, but I pooh poohed her concerns. I could only do six lifts before my body gave out. Another short rest, another set. This time I could only do four. And as I write this each and every muscle in my body from my buttal region to my neck is screaming, "Why, why did you do this to me? WHY???!!!"
They'll shut up. Eventually.
Once I get to the point where I can do three sets of ten pull-ups, we'll drop to a set of bands with lower resistance and eventually I should get to the point where I can do a pull-up at least once all by myself. At that point I fully expect that I will have also developed the ability to turn green and produce huge muscles that picturesquely explode out of my clothing.
I will be terrifically disappointed if this does not happen.
I have already begun scheming about how I can make the MarnCo Assisted Pull-up Machine work better. I'm going to try to get the spousal unit to make me a board this weekend, kind of like the seat on a child's swing, only with grooves on the underside so that I can fit the resistance bands into those slots. I'll need something such as turnbuckles on it to hold the bands in place.
This will make me a platform I can put my knees on, and give a lot more stability. Right now the bands want to slide up and down my legs, which is annoying and a bit dangerous.
And if I do coax the spousal unit to make me this board dealie, then Monday morning I will be faced with convincing some poor American border guard that it is neither a tool for terrorism, nor something that I am trying to sell to someone, so that I can bring it to my gym.
Wish me luck. I'm going to need it.
Goal for 2005: 1,250 miles - 2000 kilometers
Want to delve into my sordid past?
She's mellllllllllllllting - Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2012 - Back off, Buble - Monday, Dec. 19, 2011 - Dispersed - Monday, Nov. 28, 2011 - Nothing comes for free - Monday, Nov. 21, 2011 - None of her business - Friday, Nov. 04, 2011 -
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