I recently met a lady who said that she had to drop her books in the bookdrop just inside the door at the library rather than bring them up to the desk. She said they were too heavy for her. She uses a cane to get around.
I know another lady who needs large print but can’t hold it. Just one book is too heavy for her. She now is no longer able to get herself in and out of bed, or to the bathroom.
I’ve heard stories of women who have had breast cancer surgery who can’t use their arms to get up because of the surgery. They have to let the area heal and can’t use those muscles. So they have to use their leg muscles to get out of a chair, or off the toilet. But they are in such bad shape that they have to get friends to stay with them to pull them up.
It has to be terrible to be trapped in your own body. It has to be sad to get to the point that everything is difficult. It has to be embarrassing.
This is in part why I exercise. I don’t want to become this feeble.
I know a lady in my yoga class who is 72. I am sure the reason she is doing so well is because she goes to the Y. She works really hard to stay flexible and strong.
It takes a lot of effort to stay in shape. I’m not talking about losing weight. I’m talking about having the strength and energy to be self sufficient. I’m talking about muscles in good enough shape to live well. What does it matter if you are 60 years old but you are in a wheelchair because of something totally preventable?
Exercise is no fun. The first 15 minutes I want to be anywhere but
there. I’d love to have my week nights back too. All that time at the Y takes up a lot of my free time. But even without the Y, I walk at work. Even twenty minutes at lunch is good. And even though I’m not excited about exercise, I feel better after I do it. Some of the benefits are mental. I’ve come to see exercise as the same as dialysis. It gets the icky bits out, and it isn’t optional.
I think the key is movement, and understanding that these bodies have to be maintained. They degrade in slow motion. One day, you’ll realize that hunching over your computer all day and not moving has caught up on you.
Don’t let time slip away from you. Get going. Sure it is cold outside. Walk in your building. Can’t afford a gym membership? Rent an exercise video from the library. Just move. The life you save will be your own.