Sunday, February 28, 2010

7 Weeks to 100 Pushups: Week 5

This is my fifth week following the workout in Steve Speirs's book 7 Weeks to 100 Pushups. This is actually the fourth week of the book's schedule, since I repeated the third week. As with last week's report, I've listed the workout schedule for each day, followed by what I actually did. (The "R" stands for Ruthless Golf.)

I expected this week to be difficult, not only because I've struggled in past weeks, but because I'm struggling with some slight pain in my left shoulder. This wasn't caused by the workouts; it was slightly sore before I began. The workout has helped me identify which muscle is causing the problem though, so I've been able to massage it. I've also been using a little Tylenol to treat it, and it's improving, but it means I have to place a little more weight on my right side, which I noted last week was a little smaller than the left... hence it's weaker. And to top it all off, I had to do another late workout! But obviously I'm dealing with these things properly:

M: 14 - 17 - 14 - 14 - 20+
R: 14 - 17 - 14 - 14 - 15

I was just amazed at these results. This is a total of 74 pushups, 5 more than Friday, the most reps I've done yet in a fifth set... and the shoulder seems fine after the workout.

A strange thing happened Monday night... while I was in bed and my shoulder was bothering me, I stretched it straight out and it popped! After that, the pain dropped considerably and it's been improving since. I thought that when a shoulder was out-of-joint, you couldn't move it; apparently it can be just slightly out-of-joint. Although I felt ok Wednesday night, it may have been a bit weak:

W: 16 - 18 - 16 - 16 - 21+
R: 16 - 18 - 16 - 16 - 12

Still, that's 78 pushups, 4 better than Monday. Perhaps the shoulder will be stronger on Friday.

As it turned out, I was really busy Friday and didn't have time to do the workout. My plan was to do the workout on Saturday instead... but when I woke up Saturday morning, I noticed my left shoulder had improved much more than I expected. Since I'm hoping to get the shoulder completely healed very soon now, I decided to skip today's pushup workout and just do some gentler exercises that wouldn't put so much pressure on it. I don't know how this will affect Monday's workout, but this seemed the best choice.

F: 17 - 19 - 17 - 17 - 24+
R: -- skipped --

And that brings us up-to-date for this week. I hope you all are seeing that if you're trying to follow an existing workout program, it's ok to alter it if the circumstances warrant it. I've already repeated Week 3, simply because I was having trouble keeping up. I'm making adjustments now based on how my shoulder feels. The key here is that I am continuing to make progress; it doesn't matter if that progress is a bit slower than the program calls for. The program designer designed a generic program, which I am personalizing for ME. You should adapt a similar approach; you'll improve quicker with fewer problems that way.

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