Le Jour du Triomphe

Today was my day of triumph!!

Let’s start with the beginning: our sleep-deprived hero is awakened by the deafening sound of her phone alarm. Groaning in protest, she slowly rises, like a Phoenix from the ashes.

But for real, today started off as a pain in the dick. I got 2 hours of shitty sleep and my first few hours of work were methodical torture. Thankfully some coffee revived me enough to get through my route.

My first success was having the social courage to ask a guy I get along with to hang out with me. Totally platonically by the way! But I’m a little shy at initiating friendship because reasons. He has a girlfriend and I like women so it was just a matter of being confident enough to say, hey, we clearly get along really well, let’s be friends for real. So that was neat, I’m helping him rebuild his beer system and he’s teaching me to ski.

My second triumph was that I deadlifted a full keg at 170lbs today. I teared up I was so proud of myself and how far I’ve come. I slapped it on my way out of the cooler…ya know…to assert my dominance. I knew the keg had to be moved to do my job so I just felt good and went for it. 170lbs is really close to my own body weight so this is particularly awesome for me. Moving forward, this will be my new “safe” one-rep max, or the highest weight I can safely deadlift for one repetition. It’s actually pretty hard to tell what my max is with Fibro. My muscles have a very strange way of responding to weight. They get stronger with more work, so my last set is always my strongest and my first set is always my weakest.

My personal trainer noticed this strange phenomenon in my third triumph, which was going to a training session today. He helped me perform my first bench press sets today!! I was so unbelievably stoked. I finally have my 3 basic compound lifts nailed down (squat, deadlift, and bench). He noticed that my first set–3 difficult reps with shaking arms with spotting required–was starkly different from my last set–6 reps with relative ease. This abnormality presented itself in every exercise we attempted.

The icing on today’s cake for me was this training session. Not only did I perform a new lift, but my trainer was noticeably excited about my progress. When we were discussing my squat progress and I told him my current PRs (personal records) he just sat there in silence for a second before saying, “Well…damn. You’re getting stronger. Fast.” When I told him about how I lifted that keg today, he simply just said, “So that means you can deadlift 170lbs. Wow. Okay then!” It was so heartwarming for me to see the wonder and curiosity on his face, mixed with our mutual excitement about my progress. My case in general is already so abnormal…people with chronic pain don’t typically powerlift off meds and push kegs around all day in their free time. He also told me that he can see I’m getting bigger. Booty and legs in his opinion, but I also notice that my arms are growing pretty quickly. I’ve also grown some “wings” as he says, aka lats.

I don’t think my trainer reads my blog, but if he did, he would know that I am so extremely fond of him and that he has a very special place in my heart. He basically gave me the tools to overcome my illness…that I’ve been battling for over a decade. In four months he took me in–INJURED by the way!–and helped me transform into a healthier, smarter, and more focused person. I basically owe my quality of life to him.

I work out 5 days a week now, thanks to him and my determination, so he pretty much is responsible for turning me into an athlete. ME. An athlete. Barely able to walk, hurts to breathe, woe is me is an athlete now. I can never thank him enough for what he’s done for me and he may never realize the depth of my gratitude. Honestly? I hope I continue working with him to the point where I can go to my first powerlifting meet and start competing. I think it would mean a lot to both of us if I were able to get that far, especially given my circumstances regarding health.

Thanks for believing in me, J. Your help means more to me than you’ll ever know.

So my day rocked. It started off kinda rough but I gained some perspective on my future today. I’m staying in for the night even though I have cabin fever. I can’t spend any more miscellaneous money before my move, all my clothes are already packed, and it’s too dark and buggy to go for a walk. I’m also way way under calorie today but my stomach just isn’t having it, so walking would actually just chip away at even more calories that I can’t afford to lose. Netflix again tonight, thanks for reading 🙂

-Elle

 

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