Then and now

Lifting tiles isn't exactly the same as lifting weights

My mother was never an especially energetic person. Her greatest exercise was playing Mahjong, walking the aisles of Waldbaum’s supermarket and pacing back and forth the ground floor of our small house in anticipation of my dad arriving home from work. I don’t remember any of the other moms in the neighborhood being especially active, either. The fifties definitely was not a time when people assessed their health, eating habits and fitness. I don’t know how I’ve managed to make it to FOF, considering what I ate as a youngster, TV dinners to pork chops bathing in grease, gallons of soda to Twinkies.

When mom slowed down even more over the years, I assumed it was age related.  You reach 80, you move like a snail. We’d be walking down the street and she’d be a block behind us within minutes. Now I realize that her speed (or lack of it) had to do with her atrophying muscles.  If you don’t use something decade after decade, it gets rusty and, eventually, stops working.

Tao in at the Taj

Videos of 91-year-old yoga master and competitive dancer, Tao Porchon-Lynch, have been making their way around the web because we are thrilled to see a woman in her ninth decade moving with the grace and strength of many women half her age. Tao gives people of every age hope that we will be able to get around as well as she does when we turn 90 (we should all be so lucky). I know I won’t unless I start stepping up my exercise regime.  I take yoga lessons two hours a week (most weeks) and I walk about a mile a day. I have a spinner, which I hate using, and weights, which I pick up when the mood strikes. I’d better finish this blog and get my tush on the spinner right now.

0 Responses to “Then and now”

  1. Toby Wollin says:

    ahem. The Swedes did a study comparing the efficacy of different modalities to prevent hip fractures from happening or preventing more falls once a person had had a hip fracture. They tested everything from various exercises to military body armor. The item that worked, especially for women? Weight lifting, particularly where the legs had to be used – this strengthened the thigh, rearend, and lower abdominal muscles which in women are always the largest muscle groups, which thereby stabilized the women, gave them better balance, gave them better mobility and walking gait (it helps with problems like ‘drop foot’ and things like that), which also gave them more confidence. More confidence led more women to get out more, exercise more, and thus perpetuate the improvement. Want to help yourself NOT have a hip fracture? Get with the weights, the bigger, the better (and oh yeah…weight lifting also helps with ‘under arm dingle-dangle’).


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