Friday, 27 April 2012

Fat Woman is thrown on the mat

Fat Woman has been enjoying her boxercise class. This is despite the fact Personal Trainer says his classes are not "Boxercise"(TM) but boxing fitness, or BoxFit for short. Fat Woman thinks it would have to be a pretty damn big box for her to fit in, but she will call it whatever Personal Trainer likes. Fat Woman is now on cheerful first name terms with everyone and is holding her own with the superfit people. Personal Trainer has listened and acted upon every piece of feedback that Fat Woman and Tiny Friend have given him. Tiny Friend is still rather shy of Personal Trainer and like to send her feedback via Fat Woman, but she did actually speak directly to Personal Trainer after the last class.

Fat Woman has always said that she can box but has awful problems with the Fit part of BoxFit. The very first time Fat Woman went to Personal Trainer's BoxFit class she tried to jog on the spot along with everyone else and instantly gave herself a stitch. This was nothing to the pain Fat Woman felt in her knees when she had to get up and down off the mat for each exercise. Personal Trainer noticed that Fat Woman was struggling and gave her an accommodation. Fat Woman's knees are much improved after visits to the osteopath and she doesn't find herself yelling in pain all the time now. This fortunate fact does not change the reality that when it comes to BoxFit mat work Fat Woman is the least fit person there. Fat Woman found that she could not plank, do press ups, sit ups or crunches, let alone mountain climbers. Fat Woman hadn't had a problem with this because she had no idea that planks or mountain climbers existed.

Personal Trainer changed the format of class so that mat work is now all in one lump at the end. Fat Woman is full of heartfelt and pathetic gratitude for this. It is much easier for Fat Woman to get down on a mat and stay there than it is to do sit ups, get up and box, then get down again. Fat Woman feels that because the mat work has changed to accommodate her that she would like to tackle it, as opposed to simply ignoring it and hoping it would go away. Usually Fat Woman  gets an alternative from Personal Trainer. Fat Woman would like to be able to do at least some of the exercises.

Fat Woman has been pushing herself to actually do some mat work. When visiting the osteopath about her dodgy knees issue (patella tendon and some squashed cartilage), Fat Woman enquired about the pain in her lower spine when she lies on the mat. Previously Fat Woman had hurt the part between the sacrum and the lumbar spine by doing lots of breaststroke and was worried that perhaps it was inflamed. The osteopath diagnosed a ham string issue and told Fat Woman to do ham string stretches. This advice left Fat Woman blinking. Fat Woman is not entirely sure how stretching out your foot can cure back pain. However, the osteopath seemed to be right on the money. Lots of ham string stretches later and Fat Woman's back pain is minimal to non-existent.

Fat Woman is still a 300lb+ woman though, and lying on her back causes her some considerable discomfort.   Fat Woman imagined she could feel her spine actually pressing on the mat, which is ridiculous because there is lots of fat between the mat and the spine, not to mention the skin. When Fat Woman added something soft under herself she found she was magically able to do sit-ups! There were only five sit-ups, and two days later Fat Woman's abs felt like she had given birth, but they were definitely sit-ups.

Encouraged by the new-found sit-up ability Fat Woman hit the mat during one of her gym sessions. It just so happened that Personal Trainer was working out at the same time. Unusually, Personal Trainer was not in the Big Boy's corner lifting 140kg and squatting 170kg (or possibly the other way around) but was hanging around at the other end of the gym making use of the TRX. Fat Woman was hiding behind the barbell rack, but the TRX is at 90 degrees to the mat area and Fat Woman had NOWHERE TO HIDE. Fat Woman cut her mat work short and went and did some stationary cycling instead, but she was fairly sure that Personal  Trainer had spotted her. Fat Woman had this confirmed the following day when Personal Trainer introduced bridge holds into her training. Fat Woman is very good at bridge holds, having done them for more than a year in order to help with her back injury. Personal Trainer enquired about Fat Woman's mat work and Fat Woman had to admit that she could plank for a grand total of 10 seconds, and that she could do five sit-ups.

Personal Trainer repaid Fat Woman's candour by introducing her to table tops and crunches. Fat Woman was not at all grateful.

Fat Woman can do table tops if she has a cushion under her coccyx. The same goes for crunches. Fat Woman has to actually bring a cushion into the gym, but Fat Woman is a 300lb woman and needs some accommodation, dammit. Fat Woman has also found that using two mats instead of one is beneficial.

Fat Woman found some excellent online resources and went back to the mats armed with a set of exercises to do. The list comprised:
Dorsal Raises
Ham string curls
Bridge holds
Planks - front and side
Press ups
Mountain climbers.

Fat Woman did all the exercises with the exception of the mountain climbers. In her little blue exercise notebook Fat Woman actually wrote "fuck this!" under the mountain climber heading. Fat Woman even annotated it with the date.

Doing all this mat work left Fat Woman vaguely aching the following day. Much encouraged Fat Woman went cheerfully off to BoxFit, where Personal Trainer gave the class a set which started with a mountain climbers, went on to a table top hold, moved through rotating legs in the air and then turned into crunches.

Fat Woman considers her enthusiasm for mat work to be well and truly squashed.

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