Back in May, Melinda Applegate, a guest blogger at Ronni Bennett‘s wrote that after retiring
[she] hired a personal trainer instead, put [herself] on a diet, quit smoking, started swimming laps and visiting the gym regularly [and adds that] the not so good part about getting older is that you can no longer put off getting physically fit and healthy – our bodies are amazing and have incredible recuperative powers, but if you go too many years neglecting and abusing your health as [she] has, the older body just starts breaking down.
An interesting view, but one I beg to differ from. My body may have great recuperative powers, but as I get older, I find that I cannot keep up with swimming laps or visiting the gym.
I never really neglected or abused my health. Quite the opposite, in fact. But I think that as you get older it is more difficult to get or keep physically fit and healthy, or at least it is quite different from what it used to be.
When I was young, I enjoyed running and thought it kept me fit. I went to yoga classes too, and between the two, I felt good and thought I could do this forever. Later on, because of back-ache, running became difficult, so I switched to golf, was a really lousy golf player but enjoyed the brisk walking. I went on with yoga classes, but found myself more than once with back-ache.
Turning sixty and breast cancer made all the difference. After radiation therapy, my left arm felt numb and awkward at the beginning and although in two years I have completely recovered the use of it, I felt that golf was not an option any longer.
Rather than fighting it and trying to do and be what I used to do and be, I gave up on the idea of golf and bought myself a digital camera, thinking that it would provide me with a pretext for walking.
Also, before turning sixty (and breast cancer), I was on hormone substitute therapy, which I started at menopause because of excruciating pain in my joints and back. That had to be stopped because of breast cancer and the pains have returned with a vengeance. So getting fit and healthy the way I used to when I was young is out of the question.
Here I am in rainy Normandy and every movement hurts except when I’m walking, but I can’t walk all the time, can I?
Besides walking, I try to practice the Feldenkrais method, which helps reducing the pain in the joints. When in Paris, I go to classes twice a week, but here, I find it difficult to do it on my own.
Anyway, when it’s as humid as it is here at the moment, nothing seems to really help, painkillers and anti-inflammatory capsules seem pretty ineffective, except that when I tried to stop, the pain was worse!
Not sure complaining a little on my blog will help much either 😉
- This post has been sitting (ouch!) half-finished in my drafts folder for the longest time. Didn’t I tell you that I was the queen of procrastination? I apologize to Melinda for answering so late.
- On a daily basis, I upload quite a lot of photos onto my flickr account, but I choose one a day, which I blog at Claude’s Daily Snap