It’s always more fun to work out as a group. Laughter, will, wit and wisdom become contagious and new friends are made.
As with many events and activities, seniors are usually right on time, if not early. You’ll see them lined up outside the assigned workout studio just waiting for the door to open to grab their “space,” — like a favorite church pew. You may not know your friend’s last name or where they live, but you will notice when they aren’t in their familiar spot as class begins. Concerns arise when exercisers miss class and no one knows why—that’s part of the caring exercise community.
During the before-class social “warmup,” as you wait for the instructor, you learn about yourself as well as delightful, heartwarming and sometimes personal things about the people who exercise with you. Someone passes around a riddle that wakens your brain. Another friend invites you to look at her phone photos of a recent wedding or precious grandchildren. You commiserate about what hurts today that didn’t hurt yesterday. As one person complained about an aching shoulder, she said, “I guess it’s old age—but my other shoulder is just as old and it doesn’t hurt!” Or, you learn the results of a friend’s most recent doctor’s visit.
You enjoy traveling vicariously with your globe-trotting friends. You celebrate a milestone anniversary or birthday by offering congratulations. Or, you go up to a stranger, introduce yourself and welcome her to class.
Amid this camaraderie and workouts, the will, wisdom and wit of the ages appears. As Pat Welsh, an energetic 74-year-old front-row exerciser, says, “Exercise is good for the soul, especially when I do it with others.” She says the exercise classes she attends give her a reason to get out of bed in the morning.
The instructors usually add to the fun and feedback in a class. Initiating an exercise, our instructor encourages us by saying, “I’d like to see you bring your knee to your chest.” In the back of the room, someone quips, “I would, too!”
Positivity exudes from the instructors and is contagious. “My wisdom is to stay positive,” says Kathy McAllister, 65 years young. “Life’s ironies make me laugh. Just thinking about what makes me laugh, makes me laugh.”
Someone else who is always laughing is Claudette Keser, an avid 76-year-old water exerciser. Known as “Miss Sparkles” by her friends, she offers her most important words of wisdom, “Be kind – every day.” And, she is.
Joan Jachino, the 79-year-old, class role model rarely misses a class. Why? Because she says working out and socializing with friends makes her laugh and staves off aging.
P.D. Mitchell, the one who often harmoniously sings along with the music, agrees that staying active has helped her remain young, mobile and vibrant for 68 years.
Laughter often breaks out as we move in erratic directions when we are asked to do something that, as the instructor says, “exercises our brains.” As we try to put our minds in gear it is done with fun, good humor, and a few rolling eyes.
Always ready to actively explore what is coming next in life is Elizabeth Green, 68. You may see this lovely lady as an extra in some of the movie/TV productions in the area. She admits that she often spends a good deal of time on the computer, so she makes a conscious effort to take advantage of senior classes that offer full-body exercise routines.
A determined exerciser, Lynn Christianson, 65, says it impacts every aspect of her life.
“It is worth the effort—always!” She adds, “If I’m not in the mood, I go to the gym anyway and never regret it. It’s not just physical; the mental benefits go hand in hand.”
Rarely missing a class are husband and wife exercisers Margie and Donald Norris, who say the health benefits are what motivates them.
Agreeing, Pearline Booth Greene, 70, who also often exercises with her husband, Greg, says staying active increases their quality of life.
You can add zest to your life, too. Find the will to exercise and you will discover new friends who will share their wit and wisdom along the way.
P.D. Mitchell, the one who often harmoniously sings along with the music “Staying active has helped me remain young, mobile and vibrant for 68 years.”
Elizabeth Green, 68, an extra in some of the area movie/TV productions “I often spend a good deal of time on the computer, so I make a conscious effort to take advantage of senior classes that offer full-body exercise routines.”
Pearline Booth Greene, 70, who often exercises with her husband, Greg “Staying active increases my quality of life.”
Kathy McAllister, 65 years young “My wisdom is to stay positive. Life’s ironies make me laugh.
Just thinking about what makes me laugh, makes me laugh.”
Claudette Keser, an avid 76-year-old water exerciser “Be kind – every day.” And, she is.