Surly Curmudgeon

   The human race divides politically into those who want people to be controlled and those who have no such desire. The former are idealists acting from highest motives for the greatest good of the greatest number. The latter are surly curmudgeons, suspicious and lacking in altruism. But they are more comfortable neighbors than the other sort.
-- Robert A. Heinlein
Loading...
Location
  • Somewhere in the crusty outer layer of small towns surrounding the warm creamy center that is Oklahoma City.
Site Navigation
  • Current server time:
  • 11/19/2017 3:07:16 AM
  • Categories
    My Nerdly Hobbies
    The Daily Browse
    Reference Material
    Blogs of Note
    Non-blog Friend Pages
    Archive

    Thursday, February 12, 2009


    The... Lord... Is... My... Strength...

    Some time ago, a friend (Hi John!) told me of a way to lift weights "spiritually". Basically, instead of doing a set by counting out the repetitions, you say a phrase instead. In the case of Christian weightlifters, you use a phrase like "the Lord is my strength", with one word on each repetition. I thought it sounded corny at the time, and had never tried it until yesterday.

    The reason I tried it is because I tend to count in my head, and for some reason I tend to repeat numbers. It's like I have a bout of micro-amnesia and can't remember the last number I counted. Or rather, it's more like I can't associate the repetitions with the numbers very well. Here's what it's like in my head:

    Rep one: down... up... one.
    Rep two: down... two... up.
    Rep three: down... u-three-p... the next one is four.
    Rep four: down... up... four. I'm halfway to 8!
    Rep five: down... did I count four already? I think I did. I remember anticipating four, but the last rep I really remember was three. Better count four just to be safe. Up...
    Rep six: down... five... up.

    Or I'll skip one due to similar confusion:

    Rep one: down... up... one.
    Rep two: down... two... up.
    Rep three: down... u-three-p... the next one is four.
    Rep four: down... up... four. I'm halfway to 8!
    Rep five: down... did I count four already? I think I did. Wait, I counted it twice. So this must be six. Up...
    Rep six: down... seven... up.

    It's not that I can't count -- I've still got my math competition trophy from school to prove I can -- it's that working with numbers is so natural to me that it leaves me a lot of what we programmers call "idle cycles". I wind up confusing myself with anticipatory thoughts, random ideas, etc. So yesterday I gave this new thing a try. It's 5 words, so for the sets I'm trying to get 10 reps, I just say it through twice. For the sets where I'm trying to get 12, I toss in a "Praise God" at the end.

    And the weird thing is, it works. I never got confused or lost on any of those. I'll hypothesize that because I'm not a very verbal person -- or maybe it's the right-brain/left-brain thing -- I'm fully concentrating on each rep's "counting word", and that leaves me with no idle cycles to play with. Maybe the psych types out there (amateur and professional) can give a little more info in the comments.

    Posted by Tom, 2/12/2009 5:04:48 PM (Permalink). 0 Comments. Leave a comment...