Saturday, 26 April 2014

Chin ups and Eggs

I'm really happy that despite getting to an age that some folk have inadvertently fallen into a rut of familiarity, I'm still leaning skills, having adventures and experiencing new things.

One of the things I'm most excited about on my journey of being a team GB para canoeist  is the fact that I can now ........ do chin ups. Note the deliberate plural here :-)

This may not be a skill high up on many of your wish lists, but I've been trying unsuccessfully to do one for years.  In fact I can remember being turned away from the local gym club aged 10, despite being able to do passable headstand, because I failed the strength (ie chin up) test .
Me doing chin ups (ie more than 1!)
As a cyclist, chin ups were about as likely to happen - and as relevant - as me jumping over the moon, but when I started kayaking everyone said I had to be able to do chin ups - It's a kinda right of passage - something to do with getting strong arms, backs and shoulders I suppose.

In fact chin ups are so much of a way of life for kayakers that most of them can jump onto a bar and pop out hundreds while still chatting about their weekend. Many tie massive weights around their waists- (big enough to make my knees buckle)  and then they still manage several?!? Kayakers have even been known to do chin-ups for fun at parties...
Adding weights, like its not difficult enough!

Another new experience for me is eating eggs.  Now bear with me, egg eating may seem random and unrelated to my chin up success, but I wonder ?..... When I started on the journey changing from an endurance to a sprint athlete I had to get bigger and stronger. In order to achieve this my diet had to incorporate more protein - "Eat eggs" everyone said. This was going to be a massive challenge to manage because eggs make me feel sick- I've never been able to eat eggs, think about eggs or even sit next to someone eating eggs without feeling really nauseous. 
Yes! I can now eat eggs :-)
However, continuing the theme of 'embracing new experiences' I figured if I could become European champion in less than a year of kayaking then I could also conquer egg eating.

It's taken me 18 months of trying and I'm not sure which was harder, chin ups or egg eating but I'm happy to report that I can now do both.

I hasten to add that I can't do many of either (and never at the same time;-) ) nor do I particularly enjoy doing them and I definitely, categorically won't be doing either at parties !!

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