So I was watching Dancing with the Stars last night, as usual, and I started thinking about the kind of person it took to be a “dancer”. Hines Ward was rocking his Paso when it occurred to me…..many of the great dancers on the show have been athletes. Apollo Ono, Kristi Yamaguchi, Warren Sapp, Emmitt Smith, Shawn Johnson, just to name a few. Makes sense right? Dancing is very physical. But it also requires a lot of body awareness, something that most athletes have. They know how to analyze every inch of their body and refine even the tiniest movements in order to achieve the highest possible level of performance. They know exactly how many steps they’ll take during a full on sprint from point A to point B. They know the exact angle that they need to project their body from in order to make some one in their way fall over. They even know what angle to tilt their head in order to ensure perfect rotation. I’m sure this all translates well to having to count steps while remembering how to position each finger, what foot your weight should be on, what’s coming up next, and of course…Smile!!
This is exactly what distinguishes me from other “athletes”. I have no body awareness, zero. I know that it’s attached, but that’s about it. I’ve been corrected on movements repeatedly that I don’t even realize I’m making. When I squat, my right knee drifts in EVERY TIME. Can I feel that it’s in? No, not at all. Even when I think really hard about keeping it out, it drifts in. The only way that I know that it’s in is if I look in the mirror. Ever tried squatting heavy while looking in the mirror? For me, it’s like patting my head and rubbing my stomach. Maybe it would be easier for a more athletic person? Who knows. I have a similar experience on bench. Where are my elbows? I have no idea…attached to my wrists? Sometimes they’re in, sometimes they’re out. Am I stronger whey they’re in or out? I have no idea, because I have no idea when they’re in and when they’re out. Seriously, it’s like I’m training with a blind fold on.
This isn’t a new discovery for me. I’ve always lacked body awareness. I think it’s linked to several other inabilities as well. For example, I have no hand-eye coordination. Resultantly, I cannot perform any sport that requires the use of a ball or other instrument. Golf….no. Volleyball….oh dear god, make it stop. Tennis….I’d rather eat glass. It’s terrible. Unfortunately, my lack of body awareness also eliminates the possibility of me becoming a dancer. I have no shimmy-shake. There is absolutely no moving my shoulders in one direction and my hips in another. Belly dancers call it “compartmentalization”. Yeah that, I can’t do it. When I try to shimmy, I just end up shaking my head instead of shoulders. It’s a serious disorder, and I think there should be a name for it. Suggestions?
So since my career as a dancer isn’t going to work out, I figure I’ll keep lifting blindly as ever. Monday night was a squat workout. I had a rough weekend with lots of extra hours at work so I was tired and hungry. I took a giant swan dive off the low card diet wagon yesterday. I think it helped my workout a bit though. I squatted 5×2 at 185 and then did some RDLs, shrugs and reverse hyper. I used straps for the first time on my shrugs. Not sure that I’m a fan. Today’s bench workout should be a fun one. Hopefully I’ll still have a bit of energy left from my carb marathon yesterday, we’ll see ; )