Saturday, August 8, 2009

3-Pound Weights and My Right Shoulder

I was doing some rehabilitative shoulder exercises with little tiny weights today when BAM! My muscles stood at attention, making me want to throw on a strapless gown and run into the rain. But because I don't actually own such attire, and even though it was indeed raining, I just took a picture. What's a weightlifting blog without muscle shots, right? Indulgent as they may be.

Slow, high reps with lighter weights tend to produce maximum visual appeal. Usually I'm aiming for power, so I'm doing fast, low reps with heavier weights. I still get muscle, of course--it didn't all just show up today--but not always with such quick, obvious results. This is how bodybuilders do their thing, I guess; they pinpoint some little obscure muscle that's being shy and coax it into making an appearance, temporary as that appearance may be (even as I write, my "pump" is fading).

So forget all that worrying about greed in my last weightlifting post; I'm liking what these 3-pounders can do.

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A word on posting pictures of one's guns. (Man, that's fun to say. "Guns.")

I subscribe to the philosophies put forth by Swedish writer Sven Lindqvist in his book Bench Press. Lindqvist had thought of body building as the narcissistic pursuit of a distorted ideal of beauty, as many people do; certainly there are elements of truth to this criticism. A meeting with a young "skinhead" convinced him of the merits of the sport, however.

"I think we should encourage people to say YES to the way their bodies happen to look," Lindqvist said.

"'Are you being consistent, though?' asked the skinhead. 'Think about when you're writing, for example. Are you prepared to say, We should encourage writers to say YES to the way their first drafts happen to look?'"

Just as I coax the best writing I can out of my brain, I try to help the rest of my body reach its potential. And in the same way that I post what I hope is the best of my writing, I posted an image of the best of my arm.

Say it with me: Guns are good.

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