Journey Complete, Splits Not So Much

The Journey to Splits challenge ended on July 30. I’m finally getting around to writing down my thoughts on the process. Was I able to do a split at the end? Nope. But I was closer than on day 1!

Not much closer, but still

Not much closer, but still

My post-challenge thoughts:

1) Although I did lose a lot of my enthusiasm for the challenge about halfway through, I was proud of myself that I still stuck with it and finished. As I’ve written before, I’m not big on working out just for the sake of working out. I don’t get the endorphin rush, so it’s hard to keep myself motivated, especially after I hit the plateau and stop seeing obvious progress for awhile. But I still finished it!

2) I was actually surprised to see how much lower I felt I could get in the front split (I think that is what it’s called) on day 28 versus day 6. Hurray for noticeable progress!

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3) I wrote in the halfway post that my hamstrings were hurting. It was interesting to find the soreness moved from halfway between my butt and knees to the muscles right under my butt as I moved through the second half of the month. I guess that’s a sign of progress too, if I started to wake up new muscles!

4) It hurts to stop! I missed two days of stretching in a row towards the end of the challenge. I made up for it by doing the set of stretches twice the following day. Holy cow, that was painful! I think this happens in any kind of exercise. Your body regresses a lot faster than it progresses. I couldn’t believe how stiff my body felt after missing only two days. Serves me right for slacking!

5) I guess this means I better keep going. My intention is to continue doing at least the five foundational stretches every day. I’m going to hang on to the chart as a reference for other stretches I can throw in for variety.

6) I’m not sure if the challenge has helped my dancing. I think I feel a little better about the développé in my silver routines. But I don’t know if it’s because I feel like I can stretch my leg higher or through practice, I just feel more stable in the move.

Bottom line: I’m glad I did it and I’m definitely more flexible than I was. It was a mental challenge as well as physical since I had to work past some demons who told me I should just give up when I felt like my progress plateaued. We’ll see how far I get after another month!

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