Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Thinking of Working Out, Think of the YMCA

In broad, sweeping, general terms I don't often endorse things on any of my blogs. For one thing I live in fear of someone sending me a check and forcing the loss of my amateur status.* But, last night while working out I looked around and saw an amazing thing. People of all ages, all body types, all degrees of fitness using the equipment at my gym. It is not really my gym, it is the YMCA. It struck me, there is no reason not to join the YMCA and do what you can to get fit.

On the track there was an older lady, using a cane to take laps. Smiling politely at strangers who walked or jogged past her. She was going slow, but she was going. Every step forward is a step in the right direction.

On one of the stationary bikes was a gentlemen who carried an oxygen supply hooked to his cannulas. He was pedaling slowly, and he didn't last long, but he was trying. Heck, it was quite a hike into the center of the gym from the parking lot, and he deserves a little applause just for that.

There are large people working hard to reach the weight and fitness level they desire.  Muscular people, fit, lean and picking up weights in Atlas like displays of power. All of these disparate types peacefully coexisting in the oval described by the running track. It bought a sense of wonder and well being, a joyful celebration of diversity, humanity, and acceptance.

I was reluctant to join a gym, I was 54 years old, overweight, dumpy, lazy and had no idea how to use any of the equipment. But, I did, and have never been sorry about the choice, nobody cares that I can't lift as much as them, or run as far or fast on the treadmill, nobody even notices me, they are only there for themselves, they just want to exercise.

If you are looking for a place to exercise go check out the local YMCA. If you are worried about not fitting in, don't give it a second thought. Take it from the ultimate outsider that will not be a problem.

*Not really, let's face it for the right amount of money I would sing the praises of decaffeinated coffee. Please keep that in mind if you are looking for a paid spokesperson with low self esteem, and deficient moral fiber.

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