Tuesday, May 15, 2007

This Man is Ruining Me

This is a photograph of Joseph Pilates, the man responsible for the despair I am feeling today. I don't know exactly what the guy lying on the table is doing but it looks similar to something I do on the reformer called the "stomach massage". Why it is called this, I have no idea because I am here to tell you that it is nothing like a massage. On the contrary, it is stomach work.

As you know, I resumed Pilates mat classes and started reformer classes in the hope that I might get rid of my growing paunch and strengthen my core muscles. So far, my paunch has staunchly remained put. The only think that I have gotten rid of is any hope that I might ever be able to do Pilates correctly.

Yes, Loyal Readers, I am incredibly discouraged about Pilates. It is so HARD. Not in the the way that doing 100 crunches might be hard. It isn't something you can power through. You have to really think about your muscles and your joints and how they are moving and resting. You have to learn how NOT to use the muscles you are used to using and it all feels very unnatural. Every once in awhile, I get the sense that I am doing it just right and then POOF!, the sense of it passes and I am back to struggling.

I WILL NOT give up, though. I know that this kind of body work will serve me well as I get older, but it is difficult having the patience to really learn and practice the basics of it. It appears that it will take me a long time to get even remotely comfortable. It's a whole new experience for me of hanging in there with an exercise program that I am not at all good at.

In other news, Chris's parents have been visiting this week and as always, it is a delight to have them here. They are easy guests and as a bonus, they brought me two beautiful gifts from their recent trip to Egypt. How can you beat that?

Well, I am off to bed to read. More tomorrow when I am not so tired from trying to engage my core muscles correctly.

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