I thought the time I took off to heal my shoulder, then the time I’ve cut back because of a medical issue, wouldn’t have any great effect upon my strength. (silly me!).
I thought that when it felt like working hard, even though I had cut back on my weight, it was just me being careful.
The strength was still there waiting. I just wasn’t using it.
I can’t take 6 weeks off from strength training and keep the same level of strength. Nobody can.
It became apparent to me Wednesday when I was on the exercise ball doing reverse-crunch-to-pushups. Before my shoulder started hurting, I would try 3 sets of 15. The first 10 were easy and I had to work through the last 5 pushups (and not always succeed). The third set was a little harder than the first. However, I could do it. This time, I struggled to do 8 reps, and struggled to do a second set at all.
That’s when it struck me: I’ve lost strength. When it feels like hard work at weight levels that below what I was doing 6 weeks ago, IT’S BECAUSE IT’S HARD WORK. I’m working near my potential at the moment. (well, duh!) When I said I’d take 6-8 weeks to build back to to where I was working before, it was because I’m going to need 6-8 weeks to rebuild the strength.
I’m slow like that sometimes.
I was working with trainer Adam a bit (he’s making sure I know how to use that monster robo-cable machine and do the exercises correctly. Hello core-stability work). He gave me some tips to help, like do push-ups supersetted with tricep pull-downs to shock the muscles and speed up the strength building. He, too, reminded me that it’s going to take 6-8 weeks to recover. Hmm.. looking at the calendar.. just in time for the New Year.