I caught myself cheating on the shoulder press on Saturday. Ow. Don’t do that.
I arched my back against the weight and tried to use body English. The good news is that I caught myself and promptly corrected my form. The bad news is that I managed to pull a muscle anyway. It really let me know when I was doing dead-lifts in between shoulder press sets. That last three inches to put the bar on the floor? Yeaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhoooowch.
However, I am able to use the 30 lb bar for shoulder presses, which I had not been able to do before. And I’m up to 30 pounds on the dead-lift, probably soon to move to forty. I’m already to forty pounds on the bench-press bar. My problem there is keeping things even, and not being able to use the dedicated bench-press benches. I can’t raise the bench part high enough to allow me to rack the bar in the holders.
We will not speak of squats. They are unspeakable.
The good news is that I am stronger, and lighter, than I have been in quite a while. I have not had major back problems for several months, self-induced foolishness aside. My clothes are somewhat looser in the places I want them to be loose. And I can lift and tote storage containers, the lawnmower, and other things much more easily than in the past.
The very long-term goal with lifting the weights and doing things like squats is to build up enough core strength and bone density that I don’t suffer any more from my inherited spinal problems than I do now. All the women in my direct maternal line have problems with their spines to some degree, alas. I learned this after sudden onset sciatica six or so years ago. Having a stronger support system for my back will reduce trouble later on. Plus weight lifting increases bone density. I can’t tan, so I tend to be on the low side of the Vitamin D curve. Given my lack of altitude, I don’t have height to lose. Nor do I want to break a hip, leg, wrist, or other thing, at least not without having something to show for it.
Weight lifting is one of those things where the end point is improvement. I appreciate getting stronger and leaner. I do not appreciate the work required to reach that point. However, since there is not a safe way to achieve results without effort, I work at working out.