One of the things I espouse vigorously is that it's completely unproductive to compete with your past self. Whether your past self was thinner, had more time,more driven by a specific goal, didn't have the injuries or illnesses you have now, or was just younger, any sort of regimen that is based on "getting back to where I was before I was ___________" is, in my opinion, futile. It really only works to figure out what you want yourself to be now and then set some goals that are compatible with that.
As I have previously mentioned on this blog, it sucks to have to take your own advice. I have even wondered if my physical and psychological travails of the past several years have been forcible, not to say rude, karmic prods in the direction of really, really internalizing my own advice. But I don't believe in karma.
Having deteriorated over the past 10 months to the point where lots of everyday movement was painful and exercise had come to seem unwise, I decided to embark on a journey with Khrystyne Kaphan, the personal trainer recommended by my chiropractor. It was ridiculously hard to get our schedules in sync, but eventually I decided to change my work schedule around so that I could work with Khrys. And today was our first session.
She asked questions about my injuries and pains, current and past habits and experience with the vocabulary of lunges and squats, planks and stretches. She watched me from several angles as I did 22 squats, which I was rather surprised I could still do at all. Then I got down on the yoga mat - an adventure in and of itself - and we commenced with the floor work. This is where it became useful to refrain from comparing my current self to the self of seven or eight years ago. We were working on things that were elementary, Core for Dummies stuff, and I was only doing then at the most elementary level. The important thing, though, is that I was doing something, I wasn't hurting myself, and I felt confident that Khrys, watching every contraction of my muscles, wasn't going to let me hurt myself if she could help it.
Most of the work over the next few weeks - or maybe months - will focus on reeducating my core to support me strongly and move me around more fluidly; relax things that need relaxing and strengthen things that need strengthening. Every exercise of the 12 assigned me as daily homework, with one exception, is familiar to me from past workouts and bouts of physical therapy. I could probably even have strung them together in a sequence not unlike the one that Khrys put together for me. But I didn't. Sometimes you just need a little direction, a little push, and a little reassurance that you can still do something, even if it's small.
Anyhow, I was looking for a good pic of a fat girl doing a modified plank pose or any of the things I was doing today, but instead I came across this super cute bronze figure of a fat girl doing the cobra, which I am NOT doing for a long time yet. Get your bronze figure from Eastern Serenity. Serenity now!