There is a definite change to the atmosphere this week. Weeks 2 and 3 were pretty much the same; we warmed up, we stretched, we exercised together, we exercised on our own.
This week we are being retaught all our exercises, with us adding notes in our own words to ensure we will be able to get into the right position with the right props and make the right movements when we are on our own at the end of the clinic. Equipment pieces that have been ordered are arriving like Christmas parcels. More questions are being asked of the physios. and they are extremely solicitous of every enquiry no matter how repetitious or banal.
The weather has been less than fair this week; cold and windy. Rather than sit and eat all crowded in the tiny changing rooms, I leap off to St. Olaf's for its lunchtime concerts. A few of the others have joined me, and it's so lovely to let the body relax and the brain take over, allowing the music to seep into my now strong core. It is so quiet in their and everyone so intent on the musicthat eating is pretty well impossible. I did manage a banana and a yogurt without making any noise, but veggies and hummus were scarfed down either on the way there or on the way back, along with noisy apples and rustling packets of granola bars. I learned to avoid doing "iliopsoas on a ball" too soon after lunch, as it involved lying on my stomach a large yoga ball, with predicted results.
On our last day we were taken out one by one for our individual assessments and we had forms to fill out and reflections on the clinic itself to make. There were contests: I came 3rd in the Long Hanging competition but 1st in the Sit Skiing and the Plank competitons! However, it was only when I finished that I realized one of the instructors had been doing the plan as well and was still in position when I stopped. I had been under the impression (not looking up) that there was only one other student still planking with me and when I heard him let go I knew I could do so as well. I like to think that if I had known I still had a co-competitor I would have hung on and beatern him senseless but in reality I doubt it to be true, Still, I feel victorious if only for have gone 4 1/4 minutes which was the longest plank I'd ever done. It was then that I realized that I really do have a stong core.
I had not been able to achieve one shoulder lift while long hanging at the beginning of the clinic, but now I can manage six. I can also stay hanging for almost 2 minutes, which is another complete surprise. I truly hope I can mantain such arm and lat strength. Having a bump of muscle on my forarm is like a badge of honour for a girl of my vintage!