Training Tuesdays: In Which I Discover (Yet) Another Weakness

I have complained about the most awkward of training exercises, I have called out my lazy glutes, and I have never shied away from admitting I have the upper body strength of a four year old (and that’s being generous). As seems to be the case on a weekly basis, my training sessions provide me with constant reminders of my body’s many deficiencies. This week, I have a new one to add to the list: shoulder stability and strength.

Hand in hand with discovering this weakness I have discovered my newest nemesis: the bottoms-up kettlebell press.

See that perfectly upright kettlebell? I assure you mine looks nothing like that. Imagine instead a wildly swinging pendulum threatening at any moment to strike my head and/or shoulder and/or arm.
See that perfectly upright kettlebell? I assure you mine looks nothing like that. Imagine instead a wildly swinging kettlebell threatening at any moment to strike my head.

Much like the dreaded soft roll, I am actually incapable of doing this exercise without modifications, even when using the lightest kettlebell known to man.  I have blamed many things for my inability to do this exercise properly including:

1. sweaty hands (never you mind that the addition of chalk did not remedy the situation)

2. the fractured wrist I suffered at age 11 (which clearly would only explain one arm, even if it were a valid explanation, which it’s not)

3. weak arms (while true, it is not the issue here)

As it turns out, I have nothing to blame but shoulder instability.  That grip issue I blamed on sweaty hands? Yeah, that’s shoulder instability.  That arm weakness? Turns out it’s not my arms that I need to push that damn kettlebell up.  You guessed it, it’s shoulder stability. That fractured wrist that “keeps my wrist from remaining neutral” is just a not-so-clever scapegoat. Once again, shoulder instability is the true culprit.

And so, shoulder instability is another problem I’m adding to my ever-growing mental list of parts of my body on which to focus training.  At this point, it is like death by a thousand paper cuts. I have all sorts of supposedly normal/small issues in my body that, when combined, essentially equate to completely dysfunctional muscular mechanics. But me and my trainer are going to join forces and knock them off, one by one.

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