Friday, March 30
Who is Abbye (Pudgy) Stockton? Good question, right?
Yesterday, one of the lovely people I follow on Facebook (I can’t recall who!) posted a link to this story about the 1930s female weight-lifting pioneer who set out to lose the weight she’d gained in her job as a telephone operator and ended up one of the strongest people on Muscle Beach, just south of the Santa Monica pier.
You won’t be sorry you took the time to read it because its really interesting and probably new for most of us. When describing a woman that she trained, specifically in terms of the impact of weight-lifting on women’s bodies, Abbye uses a delightful quote:
“This woman over 30 years of age with two children, and with no athletic background whatsoever, has brought about, by her persistence, these amazing changes. Her beautiful figure is a living proof of the intelligent application of this system of figure contouring.”
From this mid-30s, mother of two, who participated but never excelled in organized sports, I find these words so comforting.
At a time when arguing that weights could have a positive impact on women’s health was hardly tested, let alone proven, Abbye’s contributions can be summarized as:
In real life, strength is not a rocket shot or exposure to a wizard or a spider bite: you’re not weak one moment and superheroic the next. It’s a decision you make daily. Abbye Eville kept lifting the dumbbells. The telephone-company weight dropped away; her childhood nickname, Pudgy, became a fond joke. Her muscles became visible and then impressive. She taught herself to do a headstand, and then a handstand.
She “kept lifting the dumbbells.” It’s that simple.
WOD: 18 rounds plus 3 thrusters and 2 swings
3 65# thrusters
6 35# KB swings
9 lateral hops
3 minute AMRAP, 5 rounds, rest 1 minute in between
60 unbroken swings 35#
PWO SFH shake
2 eggs, kale, sweet potato
leftover salmon & chicken, spinach,
grilled chicken & shrimp w/ veggies