Disastrous Thighs

I was walking along the beach, or more like waddling along the beach because the sand seemed so thick and heavy I could barely lift my legs up and down. I was hot and uncomfortable as it was, but then I had to walk past a bunch of tanned and buff blokes who were posing on their towels.

"I spy with my little eye," said one of them, smirking at me as he took a sip of beer, "A pair of disastrous thighs!"

"Disastrous thighs!" I sputtered to Gareth, as I awoke from this seaside dream. "Can you believe that? What a bastard!"

"Why disastrous thighs?"

"I dunno, I think it was meant to rhyme with eye. Anyway, he was having a go at my thighs!"

"Hmmm. Looks like you’re paranoid about your legs on a sub-conscious level!"

Could be, Fred. I feel so content with the ol body these days, but perhaps deep down I’m convinced that is only because I’m no longer living in Australia where you have to display your pale, blubbery pins for three quarters of the year unless you want to die of heat exhaustion. THANK GOODNESS I live in Britain where it’s almost winter and this is the view from your window at 4 o’clock in the afternoon:

the view

I’m not going to leave the house at all, let alone leave the house in an outfit that would reveal any ghostly flesh.

. . .

Does anyone remember Operation Push-Up? I made it a new year’s resolution to build up to proper push ups on my toes (aka "Man" Push Ups… snort!). In January I could do half of one, which was really more like a direct belly-whacker into the carpet when my arms collapsed. I managed to get up to two in May before I had to abandon the mission when I injured my neck/shoulder and had all that physiotherapy. Grrr.

Since I got the all-clear in July, I’ve slowly been rebuilding my upper body strength. It’s only been the past ten weeks that I’ve consistently managed two proper UB weights sessions per week. And I’m finally seeing some results! I read Krista’s Mistressing The Pushup advice, and started with push ups on the wall, then kitchen counter. Because my knees can’t stand any pressure on them, I had to skip the next stage altogether – knee push ups. So I’ve just been doing one or two wobbly full bodies then gone back to my trusty wall.

Today I was doing my Pyramid Upper Body DVD and the warm-up called for knee push ups. "RAH! I told you before, I can’t do those!" I yelled at the laptop. Instead of watching Cathe with my hands on my hips I decided to try as many as I could on my toes. And I managed eight! Slowly! With good form! WOOHOO! I couldn’t bloody believe it!

Okay, it’s hardly enough to get me into the army but it’s a helluva lot better than my previous zero. If I ever get to the stage where I can actually Drop And Give You Twenty, I will make a movie and upload it for you all to marvel and/or snigger at my sheer athleticism. Mwahaha.

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33 thoughts on “Disastrous Thighs

  1. So you can do 8 proper mens push-ups? Is that what you are saying? That is excellent!! I can do 2 sob sob. Your upper body must be very strong.

    I can’t believe how dark it is over there at 4pm. I’m considering going to the beach at 4pm down here. I don’t think I could cope with all that darkness. Give me the big blue skies and the beach any day. But then again, I didn’t fall in love with a Scottish laddie on the other side of the world. (The closest I get is my son Hamish.)

  2. linda – cheers! i took it with my phone so the sky looks even more menacing, hehe 🙂

    nj – yeah baby! since i can’t do lower body weights with the dodgy knee i’ve just been getting stuck into the upper, so i’ve finally made some progress! the pilates seems to help too.

    and i tooootally agree with you re the blue skies, but gareth is worth it… just 😛

    (tangent – my pilates teacher said that a guy at her gym was doing pushups for EIGHT HOURS for charity! not continously, naturally; he had breaks for food and stretches etc. she saw him after he’d done 1000 and he said he was starting to seize up a bit. holy CRAP!)

  3. 8 man push ups, bloody fantastic!

    I cant do the knee ones either with my crappy patella so I use a swiss ball to rest the legs on. Not as hard as a man push up, but harder than knee ones and good for the core muscles too cos if you dont keep em tight you roll off the ball lol

  4. Ach! Man push-ups are so hard! I can get about halfway down before I’m absolutely sure my arms are going to give out and I chicken out and go back up. I have a fear of faceplants!

  5. One of the things I admire most about you is the fact that you will not shy away from setting yourself goals that seem like impossible to reach at the moment you are setting them… You couldn’t even do one ‘man push up’ when you started and look at you now! Wow! And then there’s swimming. You gave it a go although you were terrified. It seems that no matter how big the challenge, you take it on and don’t let your fear or your initial inability to do something deter you from at least giving it a try. That, my friend, is what makes you such a star! You’re a true inspiration and I just wanted to say ‘Thank you’ for that…

    You set yourself goals and then you go out and reach them. There’s a lot I can learn from you!

    PS: And I can’t wait to see your push up movie playing here! Because I have no doubt that you’ll reach that goal as well… 🙂

  6. Holy crap! 8 full pushups, outRAGEous! I can’t even do a single one properly on my knees, gah O_O

    And omg to disastrous thighs – I swear I’ve heard similar comments on the beaches in Queensland. O_O

  7. 8 pushups – nice work! Yay, you!! You’ll be doing those 20 before you know it. 🙂

    I remember struggling to do 2 wobbly ones…not that long ago either. I may be stronger these days, but I still hate those buggers. Mind you, my evil trainer expects me to do 25 AS A WARM UP!!! Eeek!

  8. Hi there!!

    8 Pushups! That’s fantastic! I hate knee pushups too… I think I’ll try wall pushups from now on till I can do proper ones again I think!

    Well done!

    Ash

  9. Good job, DG. I keep forgetting about wall push-ups when I think about weight training. I’m not ready for even one knee push-up at this point.

    At least I don’t think I am.

    You are, as always, quite an inspiration!

  10. cheers groovers!

    debbi – woohoo, you should give them a try! i actually find the wall push ups to be more effective than the knee ones, and you get a really good core workout too coz you have to keep your body nice and straight. I always found my posture went crap when i tried knee ones…

    i don’t think i’ll be doing ANY push ups for a wee while, i am so bloody knackered after yesterday!

  11. Way to go Shauna!!

    Krista rocks. I’ve been following her push up plan too. Dunno if you’re still a member of a gym, but if you are, and they have one of those Smith machines/squat cages, you can use that to do push ups on, gradually lowering the bar as you get stronger. It’s like doing them on the stairs as Krista suggests.

    While you’re waiting for that knee to heal, why don’t you join me in my other quest, to manage a pull up? Check out Krista’s page on that too, it’s excellent. I can just about do 2 negative ones now!

    Keep up the good work!

  12. Go the manly push ups

    me lives in Edinburgh too…and omg the weather sucks. I think i would prefer showing off my wobbly flesh back at home where its warm cause at least then it was brown wobbly flesh…

    I have now lost 9 kgs…with about a zillion (ok about 24) to go

    i dont even want to think baout it…but i have lost some impressive centimeters, and people are commenting how thin i am looking. i also *bluch* now fit inot a pair of next size 16 skinny leg jeans woot!!!

    thank you for being a constant source of inspiration

  13. I started out working hard to only hold myself UP in pushup form – then went through a long time where I could slowly lower myself to the ground, get up however I had to (not a PUSH UP) and then lower again. Now I have worked up to being able to go half way down and YES! back up. Eventually I will get all the way down and UP in traditional style. I have knee problems – so am always on my toes – knees ones KILL.

    If you have shoulder problems – make sure you keep your elbows IN – touching your sides the whole time and not out to the sides like an airplane – big difference in protecting your shoulders!!!

    thanks for stopping by to say HI over the weekend – loved hearing from you.

  14. EIGHT! Next thing you’ll be doing those one-handed pushups with some beefcake guy in a thong lying on your back.

    To think I’ve been complaining about it getting dark at 5:15…

  15. *bow* you rule!! I can barely do one girlie push up before I am red faced and out of breath…

    i’m gonna be in the UK soon *grin* yay *bounce*

  16. Oh, baby! Okay, I’m going to work on this, too. I’ve been doing knee push-ups for two months on the blasted YRG program (the slow kind, too, 5 seconds down, hold for 5, up for 5) and I finally noticed yesterday that I was getting that lovely smooth movement instead of herky-jerky OH MY GOD MY ARMS ARE GOING TO DIE RIGHT NOW movement. Since my other DVD has push-ups in it, too, I need to just go ahead and try at least one of the full-body push-ups every day.

    EIGHT! You are my hero.

  17. bee – you are? when! where?! 🙂

    meg – that sounds good! and i really like the sound of this YRG thing to. And you’ll have to write more about your Jari Love DVD, i wouldn’t mind giving her a shot!

    marla – 5.15pm is still plenty depressing *g*

    vickie – that sounds like a good technique! you’re well on your way…

    jessica – you’ve done well tiger, congrats! i can’t get my lardy legs into skinny jeans of ANY size. i got a pair to my knees… once 🙂

    fluffie – oooh that sounds like a good challenge. i don’t have a pullup thingy at my wee girly gym but maybe i could get a door gym thingy?

  18. Woohoo on the push-ups!

    I remember when I started basic training in the US Army 10 years ago (eep, I’m old!), I could only do 9 full push-ups that the $#$#@ drill sergeants would count, and I was fighting for those last few reps, too. Eight weeks (and a LOT of practice) later, I was up to 36 in two minutes. One year later, and I could max out at over 65 in the same amount of time.

    Push-ups are one of those exercises in which you can see a ton of improvement once you get over that stupid girly misconception that only men have the strength to do them properly!

    I’m on the pull-up/chin-up improvement track now. So far I can only do 3-4 of them in a row, but one day I WILL be able to knock out 10. I suppose it would help if I dropped back down to 128-130 lbs, though, LOL. They are a lot harder with an additional 10% of bodyweight.

  19. crikey what a tenacious amazon you are 🙂
    thanks for the lomment on my page – I’ve only had it since July so am very proud that the great DG has popped by!!
    I’ve actually worn a skirt to work today (it’s 9.40 and 30 degrees already -a huge leap from 2 years ago when my calves never saw the light of day. it’s all progress, no?

  20. Thank you SO much for posting this blog. Obviously I just discovered you, via Foxnews. I love your writing and spirit. I weighed in at 280lbs this Feb and stood on the threshold of diabetes. I went home, cried and have been working ever since. Now I’m 230lbs and still going. It’s hard and never ending. I joined the Dr. Oz You on a Diet website and got a diet buddy, a lady who has been trying to lose the same 15 lbs for the last five years. 15 pounds? Come on. I’d love to be only 10-15 from perfect. So thanks for sharing your struggle with us, because it’s things like this that keep me going. Long live the sisterhood of Disastrous Thighs!

  21. 8 pushups!

    What can I say that hasn’t already been said? That’s fantastic!

    I could do 2 (and they weren’t very good!) last time I tried.

  22. DG! That’s so kick-ass! I managed four the other night, then promptly collapsed onto the floor in giggles as the boy was mocking me by grunting. Bastard 😉
    You rock! You should well be aware of that by now, disastrous thighs or not!

  23. Wonderful news, dg. Soon you’ll be doing diamond pushups, and knuckle pushups, and fingertip pushups… the fun’s just beginning! Oh, and regular pushups with a weight plate on your back are very cool too. (Dunno about the guy-in-thong thing that Marla’s proposing, though.) 🙂

  24. Hahaha! So funny! I work in the army, HQ, and believe me, you can do more pushups than alot of soldiers there… They used to be atletic, no doubt. Luckily there are also some hardbodies to look at :o). My main motivation to go to the gym at work ;o)…

    I live in Belgium, so the pic are similar to yours at 4pm :o)

    Kath

  25. Just found your blog and will almost certainly be rootling around in your archives in the near future. So encouraging to hear of your journey. I started at about 221 pounds and have so far got down to 193. Like you I just recognised that I had to change the way of life rather than “diet”. So, haven’t had (or felt the need for) chocolate etc for about 9 months now and have recently discovered that, contrary to my long cherished belief, people in the gym do not point and laugh if I break into a trot on the treadmill. Who knew? Haven’t felt brave enough to run in the street yet, though. This is Edinburgh after all and I don’t appear to be out of doors during daylight hours at all at present. In fact, not sure there ARE daylight hours at present! Keep up the good work and keep acting as an inspiration.