Sunday, April 11, 2010

it's only a gym

with excellent music.  The best motivator for me to have a great workout is with the right music.  In the 80's I attended numerous Jazzercise classes with the single, single, double double routines while bubblegum music guided us through the sessions.  I wore the shiny pastel leotards and followed our leader twice a week after I bore my two sons.  Some of my fellow neighbors joined me and it was a little social outlet.  When Stevie was born, Wayne and I decided to join the local health club so we could work out together at one place and since our time together alone was valuable and precious, we opted to be a part of the Willowbrook Athletic Club.  We went at 5:30 in the morning before work on Wednesday and attended Tuesday and Thursday night classes.  It takes some time for me to shop around for just the right workout class and I found two great teachers, Karen Peterik and Greg Gale.  As luck would have it, they taught back to back so my night was filled with great workouts.  Karen specialized in body sculpting and I fell in love with weights, strength and endurance, while Greg taught more stretching, dance and cardio.  This was the perfect blend and their music was the best.  Once I became fit, I remember wearing the thongs outside the workout clothes.  Brother.   No wonder Wayne always walked behind me after classes.  This health club had all the bells and whistles, as it started out as a tennis club, then expanded with a pool, massage rooms, a running track, cafe and fancy schmancy decor.  We met many long time friends at this club and still keep in touch.  Eventually, we cancelled our membership to focus full time on our ATA taekwondo classes in order to pursue our black belt status with the boys. 

When I opened my business, I spent so much time and energy creating my dream and did not want to jeopardize my hands for they were key to my success; so once we all became black belts, the family joined the newly opened Lifetime Fitness Center in Burr Ridge.  I referred so many friends and clients to this place that I should have been given complimentary membership.  It was big and beautiful with 2 pools, a spa, 2 basketball courts, racquetball, child care, and 2 levels of workout.  This place was always packed and it was hard to get on a machine.  Once again, I went shopping for just the right group classes and this was a little more painstaking.  The music in most classes was awful, the teachers had turnover too frequently and the women in class were very territorial about their spots.  I, too, like to be in the same spot, but my claws don't come out if someone else takes it once and again.  Yikes! For many years, I settled into a nice routine with 8:00am yoga classes on Tuesday and Thursday and cardio/weight/sculpting classes on Monday and Wednesday.  I had the time since the boys were all in school and once the workout was over, I had my day open for clients.  We had a family membership but I was the only one who ever went for years.  Once my time was not my own due to caregiving, I cancelled same and remained stagnant for over a year; not a good time to do this, for menopause did not treat me kindly.  I actually enjoyed being a lazy slug for awhile and relished not having any routines save for whatever my family needed me for (that was enough.)  Now I am searching for a healthy lifestyle that is not so intensive, or demanding, and most of all, convenient.  Wayne, Steve and I joined a little gym joint within walking distance.  At first I thought is was dumpy, compared to what I was used to for the last few decades, but in actuality, it is absolutely perfect for my current needs.  When we worked out to Seger and Allman Brothers this morning, I was convinced this is all I need.  Most people bring their ipods filled with their own music, but there's something about the big picture sound to me. There is always a spot on whichever machine we want, and I get the window view (and you can't beat the price.)  I never minded paying for a place to stay healthy as long as it was being patronized, but when no one goes, I get a little nuts.  Even if no one goes for a month at this place, it would barely make a difference.   

At this stage in my life, less is more. And that includes the inches and the pounds, baby...

to your health! xo