Exercise at 53

My birthday is this month. In a mere 16 days I’ll be 53. A child, you say. A youngster.

Not so much.

In 2009, after my weight loss surgery, I was seven years younger and did some extreme things to get into shape. Kick boxing, running, cross fit, crazy boot camps, high impact/aerobic workouts.

For the last four years, I’ve been trying to do some of those things and failing. Minor injuries that have healed but have been a wake up call that I have to change how I go about getting into shape.

This is why, finally, after 20 years of hearing about it, I tried Pilates. I have no idea why I resisted the idea for so long. I don’t think I even knew what it was, but for some reason, I was determined not to do it.

In November, I finally took a free introduction to the Reformer given by the studio I now attend. A good way to get to know the instructor, the moves and the equipment without committing.

I confess, my first thought was – lie down to exercise? Sign me up! It’s harder than it looks. But it works great. And I find that I can actually get myself up at 5am to make my 6:15 class (that is a 40 minute drive away.)

The class is in Carson City, near where I work and I started it when I got hired and two weeks before I actually started. That way, I got used to the routine, and when I went to work, I had no excuses about putting it off until I was settled in my job. (I am the QUEEN of excuse making – trust me – this would have happened.)

At first I went 3 times a week for an hour. I started in November and lost 2 pounds in two months. Not a lot, you say? Ha! I lost TWO SIZES in  two months. That stuff works. And, I like it. My whole body feels better. I notice when I skip a class and not in a good way. I started out being able to do maybe 25% of the workout. Lots of resting and starting again. After three months, I find that I can do almost all of it – maybe 75%. This feels like great progress.

This week I added a fourth class, so I am going Mon, Tues, Thu and Fri for an hour each. If I add a fifth class at some point, it will most likely be on Wed as I do not want to drive 40 minutes for a workout. (Though I COULD also add the North Carson OA meeting at the same time. Something think about another day.)

Everyone I tell about it says, but it’s too expensive. Did I mention that my gastric bypass cost $70k? I think $12 for an hour class is much more reasonable. Three times a week for four weeks comes out to (wait while I do the math) $144 a month.

I’m also walking, which is completely free. About a month after I started Pilates, my old friend Ellen (we were roommates for study abroad in London in the mid-80s. Yes, I’m that old) sent me a Fitbit. I freaking love that thing. I am so competitive with myself and I really, really like metrics. So, I am trying to get as close to 10k steps a day as I can. This has also helped with tracking my food, sleep and resting heart rate. Thank you, Ellen!

I know that when I exercise, I not only look better, but I feel better. That’s both physical and mental. So I try to remind myself when I feel like skipping it, that not skipping it will feel even better.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s