Use it or lose it!

Tuesday gray rainy day.
A gray rainy, stormy Tuesday.

I tried my first exercise class in years at the YMCA Monday. It was an hour-long class called “Barre Above.”

From the “Barre Above” website it says:

What is “barre”?

While many interpret barre workouts differently, most barre workouts are a fusion of yoga, Pilates, strength training, and ballet. Barre classes incorporate specific sequencing patterns and isometric movements that target specific muscle groups. This pattern of exercise helps to improve strength, balance, flexibility and posture.

I loved it. I caught myself smiling in the mirror even though getting through the class was a struggle. I took ballet as an adult from my 20s into my 50s. I stopped because the dance studio closed and the instructor moved. I didn’t find another studio that fit my schedule.

I love ballet. I began as a child and would never have stopped but my mom quit taking me. My ballet studio was close to an hour away from our small town. As I grew older, class went from once a week to two, then three and four. My mom stopped when I got my first pointe shoes and needed to be at rehearsal daily for a recital. One of my ballet slippers fell out of my ballet bag — and my mom grew impatient as I searched for it.

“You’re obviously not interested anymore,” Mom said. And that was that.

I don’t think parents in the 1970s were as obsessed with getting their kids to activities like many of us were in the 2000s and 2010s.

When I was a freshman at the University of Washington, I signed up for ballet my first quarter and fell in love with ballet again.

Back to Monday. I loved the class. I didn’t think I’d survive, but I made the entire hour. Then Tuesday morning hit. Yikes!

My husband gave me a hug as I struggled to get my legs underneath me. My shoulders were stuck around my ears. He heated up the lavendar-weighted shoulder wrap and I eventually got out of bed.

Tuesday, I had reserved a lane at the Y. Rain and thunder and lightening raged all night and morning. Then right before my lane time, the sun broke out. I checked my iphone and I had one hour until rain and thunder was supposed to return.

The sun hovered over the pool, while dark clouds circled like sharks. I had a “shake out” relaxing swim where my sore muscle pain eased. I got out early before the storm hit feeling quite proud of myself.

Since joining the YMCA, I learned that I am terribly out of shape. It’s time for me to use it or lose it!

The rain arrived after my sunny swim at the YMCA.

What sports or activities did you enjoy as a child that you continued into adulthood? Which ones did you stop? Did you take your kids to athletics or other activities while they were growing up? What was their favorite activity?

20 thoughts on “Use it or lose it!

  1. I was always a tennis player, and my daughter is a tennis player. I don’t do it as much because playing tennis in nyc is very pricey, but I love it. My daughter also played soccer and softball (though it was more about uniforms and fun cheers than the sport)

  2. I never was a sports person. My husband and son are avid sports guys. Softball, golf, bowling are the main ones. Our son played golf all through high school and still plays softball now in his 30s. If my husband hadn’t hurt his back he’d probably still be playing too. Hubby and I were on bowling leagues together for quite a few years but then I stopped to take care of the kids. Our youngest daughter played volleyball for a year in high school but that was it. I used to drive the golf team to their matches because I was working from home and we had a van to hold 5 guys. Good for you for getting out there again.

  3. Out of shape? Oval is a shape. So is a trapezoid and an Octagon…..and Round….Square….and Triangle. There is Rhombus, Pentagon and Nonagon. Trapezium, Parallelogram and Hexagram. So everyday I wake up, I am in a shape, just not the preferred one.

  4. I was not allowed to exercise growing up due to my Metabolic Disorder. I did try Softball, but, that’s not a good memory. Imagine Lucy when the sun gets in her eyes and never catching the ball (Peanuts). I am excited to have joined LVAC and am trying for 3 days a week.

  5. Walking. I remember walking in the mountains, NYC, Queens, NY, Westhampton Beach. Wherever I am, I walk. I look forward to the summer joining a gym again and finding my shape one more time!

  6. I toy with the idea of joining a barre studio but it’s very expensive here. I agree with the concept that if you don’t use it, you lose it and once a woman gets to “a certain age,” it’s harder to use it without painful consequences! Or, maybe that’s just my excuse………

  7. I used to take tae kwan do and gymnastics and kickboxing as a kid. As a teen I played basketball and went swimming. I even learned horseback riding over 1 summer. But since I got married 8 years ago, I’ve been living a sedentary lifestyle. I signed up for pilates classes a few times and went swimming 5 times in the past 8 years, but that’s it. I try to practice yoga at home and go walking whenever I can.

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