G *grumble* P *grumble* P *grumble*

If you are a coach, or even my coach, feel free to laugh here. It’s been a tough week in South Carolina, with temperatures in the mid- to high-90s every afternoon. Did I mention I work out in a single-car garage at 2pm? There were incredible views of cotton-candy clouds suspended in unbelievably blue skies while I walked around the block between circuits. The house is located at the high point of the block and so it is uphill either way. If my coach could make it uphill both ways, he would. My current preference is the sharp, short downhill followed by the smooth, winding uphill. I have a hate-hate relationship with cardio at this time, but there’s an eerie familiarity from my days as a competitive swimmer. The familiarity keeps me from fighting with the gasping and lets my chest heave and the water pouring off my skin may as well be from a pool. This is normal.

We de-loaded for the first meet in Atlanta, took a week off, and then returned to the garage for General Physical Preparation (GPP). I still have a nagging shoulder injury, stability issues, and definite cardiovascular weakness. The prep is for that long warble between hypertrophy and strength with extra cardio thrown in to promote fat loss. Extra. Cardio. I’m also deep into menopause and getting all the signs of low estrogen, e.g. sleep disturbances, heartburn, and problems with libido and intimacy. All of these things affect training. However, my coach and I have agreed ISYMFS and as long as I stay injury-free, we press on.

We lose the garage in July. His lease is up, the gym equipment goes back to its owner and the coach goes to a new address. For the first time in nearly eight months, we will be back in a commercial gym. Transitions generally suck. Someone will have to wear shoes, we will have less control over any music, and it will be different. Things changing also highlights my problems with grasping and attachment.

I like what I have now, minus the heat and cardio. If I had my way, everything except the shape of my ass would stay just as it is. I will not have my way.

Not only am I challenged to embrace the power of hills and heat to shape my physical self, I am challenged to sit in my feelings of insecurity and vulnerability and embrace the reality of change. ISYMFS.


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