Confession: I was not as disciplined at working out every day this week as I wanted to be.
I let my daily planks slide to every other day and I had many days of intending to run where I never ran.
On to the good news!
Even two weeks of mostly daily planks has started building better core strength. This week I began to add in some ab exercises and was pleasantly surprised to find that even some of my smaller, more intricate muscles and tendons were finally firing.
Having had two massages now this month has also loosened me up to the point where I can begin finding proper alignment and I notice that my pronation and walking stride are changing leaving me with sore glutes where I didn't use to have muscle engagement.
I've also noticed a more stable upper back when playing the cello. (At least on scales where the stress of note reading is eliminated and I can focus all my attention on posture.)
Here's what I did accomplish this week:
- Tuesday - morning yoga, 30 second hand plank
- Wednesday - morning yoga, 30 second hand plank
- Thursday - morning yoga
- Friday - 4 mile hike, massage
- Saturday - lazy day (with lots of cello playing...)
- Sunday - morning yoga, ab workout
- Monday - morning yoga, 30 second hand plank, ab workout
This week I'm upping my planks to a minute but headed back down to the forearms. I'm going to continue adding in more diligent ab workouts as well as some resistance bands for upper body, shoulders and back. I'm starting an exercise journal to better keep track of what I'm accomplishing and I'm making Friday morning hikes a norm for my mental and physical health.
I read an excellent column by Casey Johnson on weight lifting the other day and she talks about how in just three days a week for only twelve weeks, you can build muscle and change your body and lifestyle (provided you continue on this path as a new habit). Thinking of my year in twelve week cycles may be a more realistic way for me to add lifestyle changes and strengthen as I work towards pain-free playing.
Remember, our bodies should never limit our art, so learn how to train like an athlete to play like a musician.
Less pain and more music!