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Stand tall

They're very big on shoulder retraction at ME Fitness. Apparently, if you keep your shoulders back and down, you get a safer and more effective workout, and you learn to offset the hunched position that a modern life of driving (or bike-riding) and computer use causes.

Shoulder retraction feels kind of weird--like sticking my boobs way out there. But when I got a look at myself (in the ubiquitous wall o'mirrors at the gym) I thought, damn! That's a figure-improver all by itself! Straight, square shoulders, longer-looking torso, and a kind of Superman thing that looked pretty good on me!

Cue cape fluttering in the breeze.

My trainer, Rebecca, is keen on form, and has shown me, in careful detail, how I can do squats without making my knees worse. She explained why two-second stretches are better than long ones. (I don't remember quite why, but I believe it and I'm gonna do that.) She makes me keep my elbows and knees in the right places to avoid injury, and has me balance on one foot and close my eyes, and she asked me if I was visual or kinesthetic. "Auditory," I said, and she quickly switched to explaining things in more words, which I thought very clever and considerate of her.

I had no idea about any of this stuff. Previous bouts of gym-going were hit and miss, and my crap knees are as much the result of poor workout practice as of fifty pounds of excess weight. Now I feel as if I can make systematic progress toward better body-use and improved strength and flexibility.

Then maybe in Zumba classes, I'll be able to shake things a little more gracefully.

Crossposted from Dreamwidth, where there are comments. | Comment at Dreamwidth.

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