Today begins week 7 of this 16 week hybrid round. And while some days are better than others, the general trend is one of increasing strength and muscle gain. I’ve expressed this gain with the purchase of a new, 20 kg (44 lbs) kettlebell. It’s very satisfying that I’ve gone from swinging a 16er for about half my rounds, to now starting out with the 20 and falling back to the 16 as my baseline bell.
So things are generally trending well. My injured knee/hamstring issue continues its healing. I’ve introduced deeper squats and moderate plyo into my routines. Movement on the tennis court is getting better. Hiking and backpacking performance is decent. Range of motion in yoga routines is getting closer to normal on the injured side.
In February, I went on our Troop’s annual backpacking trip to Pine Mountain, Georgia. We hiked 10 miles the first day. 10 miles is a pretty good distance with a full pack. As is usual for me, around mile 8, the tendons around my knees started getting bitchy. Likewise, with the better weather, I’ve started doing a 5.5 mile loop hike down by the river near my house. My time is good, but my steps lack that plyo spring I enjoy when in very good shape. So the 8 mile backpacking knee pain and the lack or elan in my hiking steps are why I characterize my performance as “decent,” as opposed to something more exuberant.
Also, since I’m sort of complaining, there is still zero weight loss. And it’s definitely not because of all the awesomeness and muscle gain I’ve developed. It’s that damn belly fat. I’ve resolved to work harder at it because it’s really starting to bug me. It’s also, I know, at the root of what’s slowing me down.
On the positive side, pull ups are getting stronger, even though I’m pulling up 10 lbs more weight. So the optimist would say I’m enjoying the cost savings of not needing to purchase a weighted vest to make my pull ups more challenging. I would say: lose the weight and do more pull ups! So far, it’s the pull ups that are proving the most draining, particularly the needed ab effort. Two days afterwards, I still feel it.
Kettlebell day today.