Journey into Weights
Well friends, I’ve finally done it. I’ve started lifting heavy stuff and putting it back down. Weights is something I have always wanted to try out, but for some reason have shied away from. Any woman I’ve spoken to about weights is a total convert. A couple of months ago, I started seriously thinking about making the move, then I found out I got into London Marathon and thought this would be the perfect time to add a new dimension to my training.
I was grumbling a couple of weeks ago about how frustrated I’ve been with my running lately. When I get like this, I find it always helps to switch up the training a little bit. Now that I’ll be training for a marathon, knowing the amount of running I’ll have to do and how I may lose my mind doing just that, I figure weights are good for me for a number of reasons. First of all, it’ll break up the monotony of all that running, but most importantly, it’ll strengthen me in key areas (legs, glutes, lower back) where I have definitely struggled in the past.
So, I went to my friend ThruTheBlue (Melissa), a total weights don, to show me the ropes. I had a couple of sessions at her home gym where she devised a plan for me and showed me how to safely do all the exercises. I got such an adrenalin rush after the first session. There is a real satisfaction that comes from testing your strength.
But I couldn’t work out at Melissa’s home gym forever. I had to find me a gym and go it alone. Last week, I found a cheap and cheerful gym near me and signed up. I was crazy nervous about my first time. When I went to see the gym, the weights section was a total sausage fest – just big men and muscles dominating every bench. I wondered how I’d ever be able to slot in there. I was also apprehensive about silly little things. At her home gym, Melissa had set up the weights for me, changed them after each exercise and been there to guide me. What if I struggled to do all that myself? Basically, I didn’t want to look like an idiot who didn’t know what she was doing.
I had my first solo gym session on Monday of this week. I had my plan all programmed into my phone and nervously approached the weights section. I located the squat rack, set it up with the weight I needed and I was off. It was as if with that first set of squats, all the nerves just disappeared. No one was looking at me. I didn’t feel self conscious. Everyone is involved in their own work out.
Yesterday I squatted 52.5kg, dead-lifted 72.5kg and wanted to high five everyone around me (I resisted). I’m really enjoying seeing what my body can do and am so looking forward to how this will impact my running for the better. Melissa has also really helped me with my nutrition, an area I need massive assistance with, and I’m feeling great.
My approach to marathon training this time around is simply that if you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always gotten. This training period leading up to the marathon in April will be really interesting. I’ll definitely keep you all updated with how my move into weights affects it all.
Do you lift? What is your experience with it?