Oh my gosh, guys. This WEATHER.
I keep forgetting why I want to get a job when one of the primary responsibilities of my current job is to spend half the day strolling around in perfect fall weather, taking pictures of geese.
Oh yeah…because that’ll change.
Very soon, Mason’s going to find that blithely pushing his toys up and down the driveway is suddenly not a regular part of his day. That he can no longer run out onto the deck in his socks and throw Tupperware down the slide whenever the mood strikes.
In case you can’t tell, I’m really, really dreading this.
Last winter wasn’t so bad—he didn’t really care whether he was rolling around and drooling on grass or carpet—but now he knows too much.
He knows what the outdoor world can offer, and nowhere in his understanding of that world will you find “tediously applying 6 layers of clothing before exiting the house,” “having zero traction on the driveway,” “being unable to exit the house for days at a time due to blizzards,” or any of the other realities of winter.
I might have to actually start pinning some of those “50 rainy day activities for toddlers” lists I always see around the web. I thought those were just for women who are better moms than me, but it turns out they might actually be survival/sanity lists.
In other news, I’m on a big Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred kick again. The workouts feel kinda old school, especially next to the fancy piyo stuff I’ve been doing lately, but I like the intense strength training and feel like I desperately need it right now. Even after that one measly week I was beaten down by that cold and not really working out, I can tell that I’ve lost a lot of arm strength. ONE WEEK! What!
As much as I like JM’s workouts, they have disappointed me in the past. A few weeks ago, literally hours before we left for our family cabin trip, I tweaked my upper back during the level 2 Shred workout. Like REALLY yanked it.
I can’t say exactly what caused the problem, but the pain kicked in while I was doing side plank leg lifts.
I’m not a huge fan of these anyway, because of how awkward they feel, but now I’m basically terrified to ever do them again. I don’t get a lot of workout-related injuries (read: zero), so this back thing freaked me out.
When it still hurt (not just ached, but hurt) the next morning, I was worried that I’d done something really serious to it. I remember being at the cabin, visualizing my chiropractor’s kind face and desperately willing her to appear next to me…
I was fine by day 3, but it was kind of a wake-up call for me. Yes, injuries can happen TO ME! (Can you believe it??)
Two other lessons learned:
1) Be careful with side plank leg lifts!
I didn’t think I was doing anything wrong, form-wise, but it’s very possible that I was not activating my core enough. It’s also very possible that I just dove out of the move when I was done, rather than slowing lowering my hips and letting my shoulder drop carefully.
2) The upper back is very hard to stretch well.
With most muscles, there’s an easy way to target and stretch that exact muscle, and to breathe into the spot to release tension. Not so easy with the upper back, I discovered.
I Googled “upper back stretches” like crazy and found lots of ideas (like these and these) but not the magical solutions I was hoping for. The only move that gave me anything close to relief was this (of all things):
- Sitting or standing, twist your upper body 15 degrees to each side.
- From an upright position, hunch your upper back forward. Alternately, from the floor, in a crunch position, hunch your back forward.
- From an upright position, do side bends and focus bending your spine from your shoulders to your hips. Do not overdo this movement.
Well, that’s it for me! I’m waiting for Mase to get up from his nap so we can do a Trader Joe’s run (we’re out of sweet apple chicken sausage, which is basically an emergency). Then, tonight is girl’s night! Looking forward to some gossip and a nice, big glass of red!
Have you ever injured your back during a workout? What did you do?
Have you ever taken a short break from working out and REALLY noticed the difference when you came back?
Fellow moms: favorite indoor toddler activity??
Wine preference: red or white? (Or beer/other?)