Did my love for physical fitness begin in elementary school, when PE class consisted of doing toe touches and push-ups to the “Chicken Fat” song? And, of course, climbing up that scratchy rope that was attached to the gym’s ceiling (what the heck was that all about??)
How about in middle school, when we were introduced to swim class, rubber swim caps that left dents in our foreheads and stretched out swimsuits that had been worn by God knows how many others?
Could I have fallen in love with physical fitness in High School, where I was always one of the last ones chosen for floor hockey games, and actually fractured my thumb after hitting a wall during relay races?
And again, Nah.
No, I became a fitness fanatic at the age of 19, when I decided my knees were too chubby. For some reason, (too many French fries?) my clothing size had increased to double digits. I took drastic action:
- I would walk for miles or ride my bike for hours. (A bit extreme, right? Hey, I was young).
- I would attempt a hundred sit-ups a day (not known as crunches back then).
- I (foolishly) over exercised, believing that if some exercise was good for you, excessive workouts would be even better.
Then came the eighties, with its high impact aerobics and Richard Simmons dancing and sweating (not attractive, Richard) to the oldies. And of course, Jane Fonda, looking good in her tights and leotards, cheerfully leading us flabby people in those complicated steps and grapevines (bulimic, but who knew?). Unfortunately, my left foot never figured out what my right foot was doing. Bummer.
Somewhere along the way, I learned to love to sweat. I also figured out that I didn’t have to overdo it and exercise every stinkin’ day to get its benefits.
Exercise is a great way to laugh in the face of aging. I love it because it makes me feel like I can kick ass, even at age 58. I hope to be able to exercise until just before I kick the bucket.
Benefits of Exercise:
It is exercise alone that supports the spirits, and keeps the mind in vigor. (Marcus Tullius Cicero)