Week 28

56,000 swings fully completed and now it’s time for a short break. I’m heading back to the UK for a couple of weeks to spend time with my children, family and friends. The break will undoubtedly recharge my enthusiasm and allow my shoulder to repair itself.

I did consider finding ways to keep the swinging while I am there. I will have access to gyms and plenty of training partners and cheerleaders but with only 11 nights and a host of people I only see once a year I’ve prioritised the social over the swings.

When I return I’ll have 22 weeks to finish the challenge. That will take me up to Christmas and frankly I really look forward to just being a bit of a pig over the festive period. So to increase the effort on my part I’m going to compress that 22 weeks into 20 or possibly 18 weeks. I plan to up the daily swing count to 500 bringing the weekly total to 2500. 5 weeks for the price of 4. To hit that consistently I am going to take more care over the joints and shoulders. 

So for now, stepping away from the kettlebell, putting my feet up and opening a cold one. 

Week 27

Pushing through an injury is always a stupid idea. Fortunately I haven’t been that stupid. The shoulder injury is still causing me some discomfort and some semi-professional advice had pinpointed my medial deltoid as the weak spot. 

As I mentioned in a previous post, the humble kettlebell swing is often touted as one of the full body exercises that can cure all ills, deadlifts and swimming being others, also (the horror!) burpees. This injury however underlines the shortcomings in this line of thinking. The range of movement in the swing does engage a number of muscles. It works the core, legs, back, forearms, hamstrings, hips and shoulders among others.

The deltoid, the heart shaped muscle on the shoulder joint comes in three sections, anterior, medial and posterior. Anterior and posterior, front and back. Medial = middle. Latin lesson over. The anterior deltoid and its posterior partner are responsible for the forward and back motion of the arm, the motion through the plane of the swing. The medial however brings the arm up from the side creating a T shape. Definitely not part of the swing, more like shoulder flys. Anatomy lesson done.

So the lack of this movement in my routine has created the weakness. This weakness was exposed during my inglorious return to the rugby pitch and now I carry the niggle. I don’t know if I can rehab it and complete my challenge but I’ll only find out by trying.