Sunday, July 15, 2007

Senior Exercise

I like to get my exercise the natural way, by walking places, gardening, and such, but it's not always possible, so I've belonged to a gym for about 20 years now, 15 of them the same gym (Sports and Wellness) It's changed owners since I started, and I don't like it any more. But there are not many other gyms on my beaten trails, except for a Senior Fitness Center run by the city which couldn't be more convenient. I told my husband that I was looking forward to getting old so I could use it, and he informed me in the nicest possible way that I was old and could use it.

It took me about 3 months to "get around" to checking it out. I walked in and asked the woman at the desk how one got to use this gym? And she, bless her heart, said, "well, you do have to be at least 50 years old." "Oh, I'm all of that," I said and...double bless her heart, she carded me! Made my day.

In spite of the fact that I've apparently been eligible to use this gym for half a decade, it was clear that if I did, I'd be about two decades younger than the average user. And frankly, I'm not really sure I'll be quite comfortable there. The people using the gym the afternoon I visited were, well, practically frail, gingerly treading their treadmills. And good for them for taking care of themselves! Still, I'm worried that it would feel like showing off to go through my paces. But since it only costs $18.00 a year, (about a third of the monthly rate at my gym), I decided to sign up and try it out.

But I haven't done it yet.

Nor have I been back to the gym I don't like any more.

I'm stuck between self-image and practicality.

Stay Tunned


Anonymous said...

Hey Chris,

My husband and I crossed this "senior" bridge last year for practical reasons similar to your need for a gym. We needed a one year rental of a home and the nicest by far at the best price was in a seniors' development. It had twice the room, a nice community pool, no stairs, and quiet neighbors. We are the babies in the complex, but people are so friendly and pleasant it is a much better experience than had we pursued the other option of an apartment complex with people twenty years or more younger than we are. I have to say I am finding a lot of benefits to being a "senior" --- there is a certain freedom. You try to look your best, but you are trying to look like a pleasant Mom or Grandma, not some super hottie. People are a bit kinder to me now than when I was 40. I am old enough to have experience and a little wisdom, and not yet old enought to be dismissed. People older than me are pleased to have me around, but they don't think of me as a kid. I think you'll like it.

Lisa said...

The "multigenerational center" next to our house is quite new, equally inexpensive, and has no age restrictions. (Other than a sign saying "no children allowed.")

It's also quite crowded...

I have been contemplating joining the badminton group in that same center, but am put off by statements that people my age will not play if someone older is waiting. Well, that, and they look like they're all a lot better than I am...

Anonymous said...

Since you are still a member, have you tried NIA at Sports and Wellness? They describe it as: "A non-impact dance fitness program that blends dance, yoga, martial and healing arts with world music." I'm 60, and have been enjoying it for 5 years now.

It is offered every day but Tuesday at Midtown, and twice on Monday. Look here for more info: