Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Older bodies

Here in Whistler, BC, Art and I have walked six miles for each of the last two days - one day around Lost Lake, and today around Alta Lake. We've been walking for years. Recently, though, I can tell I'm not the young flexible thing I used to be. I woke up early this morning and could hardly move. Every muscle hurt, even the ones not needed for walking. I felt very old.

I did limber up by the time we started out on our walk today. But I remember, years ago, when I would have followed a six-mile walk with an ice cream cone and a dip in the pool - rather than just the ice cream cone. And my feet might have hurt, but my piriformis wouldn't have bothered me. So I do the stretches recommended by my chiropractor and my massage therapist and hope for the best.

I have goals for my post-work years. One of them is to help build houses for Habitat for Humanity, one in my community first, and then in others. To do that, though, I've got to be strong and fit. I'm so-so in both categories. So I walk. But then I feel it! Makes me wonder whether I ought to be applying to work in the Habitat for Humanity office instead.

I'm working on my online ESL class now, and that involves sitting at my computer, which is more comfortable. However, comfort leads to complacency, which leads to inactivity, which leads to out-of-shapeness, not conducive to a Habitat builder.

I know that exercise and strength training are first steps for my Habitat goal. Like taking the online class is the first step for my goal of teaching English as a second language.

Whoever said it would be easy?


Tabitha Bird said...

I agree. These things aren't easy. I run. And I box. And trust me, I need them both to stay sane. The side benefit has been the fitness and strength. I am stronger and fitter now then I was in my early 20's. At 33 I see no reason not to run and box till my little heart is content. having a running partner really helps. Some mornings I would not get up if it were not for her.

imbeingheldhostage said...

It stinks really-- retiring when our bodies are also wanting to retire. I mean, why is it we focus on our careers and families and the peak of our stamina and leave our enjoyment for the time when everything makes us ache? I'm a DECADE older than my husband. I just keep telling him, "You just wait! You won't be able to pop up out of the chair so quickly in ten years either". Good for you with the Habitat for Humanity. What an awesome thing to get involved with!

Nancy/BLissed-Out Grandma said...

My doctor once told me, "Strong women live longer." Seems logical, but I wish I'd made regular physical activity a habit about 50 years ago!

Sally Wessely said...

Look at the positive side. You walked six miles. I am impressed! Keep it up. I think that when we sit around we become even less limber. We also try to walk each day.

Best to you on the ESL classes. Where do you plan to teach. That is my background. If you need any tips or have any questions, let me know.

Deb Shucka said...

Boy can I relate to this. It's why I stick to yoga and why I'm grateful I've walked my whole life. Isn't Canada beautiful?

Ms Sparrow said...

I started going to Curves three times a week for a workout. It's helping my joints and stamina but I still couldn't walk six miles!