The conversation goes something like this, “you could spend all of your time living inside of June. You ought to get used to the weather during the colder moments. They don’t last forever.”
Roll my eyes, shake my head and remind them that though I may not be a fan of the cold I am very active and not unwilling to go out in all kinds of weather.
“My concern about going out during the winter in Texas is always predicated upon whether there is ice and or snow because there are so many who don’t know how to drive in those conditions. Aside from that, it is not uncommon to see me out and about. Aside from life during Covid it was the rule and not the exception.”
Another young trainer at the gym wants to know if I am interested in getting help with creating a workout that will help the create the body I want.
“Been lifting for at least 40 years now. Got two questions for you, have you trained anyone who is in their fifties and what is your strategy for instilling discipline?”
The answer to the first question is no and the second is a request to give myself a gift and purchase four sessions.
I don’t tell him those are the wrong answers or engage for more than a few more minutes because I haven’t figured out the exact roadmap but I know where I am trying to go.
Functional Training & Functional Living
There is 187 things going on inside my head and that is the excuse I give myself for not being as disciplined as I could be about some things at the gym.
The comment about having been lifting for 40 years isn’t an exaggeration because I have owned weights since I was a wee lad of 13.
The general goal has always been the same but the specific have changed based upon what I was doing at particular points in life.
During my time as a swimmer I worked on developing muscles in a different fashion than when I was in college and afterwards.
And now I find things changing again because the idea of building a functional body is beginning to become more important than it was when I was younger.
A good friend at the office talks about the importance of distinguishing between vanity and sanity. That is something that has become far more important because vanity is a succubus that doesn’t care about long term happiness.
I can’t do things I used to do the way I did them and it has taken time to accept that. That doesn’t mean I accept not being able to go after certain goals but rather I need to take a different approach.
Vanity is what pushes me to go after the heavy weights. Sanity is what reminds me that I can still do that if I want to but I have to adjust my approach or the recovery period takes too damn long.
Sanity is what pushes me to adjust and build the kind of muscle that will allow me to live my life without need of assistance into old age.
That is the goal, to always be physically able and capable of doing what I need to do. I see no reason why I can’t make that happen.
If I was to work with a trainer I’d want someone who understood that and had some experience working with an older clientele.
So though I don’t consider myself old I know my body is different from when I was younger. The trainer who tries to tell me that a 35 year-old is old isn’t someone I’ll take very seriously.
I still climb over fences and jump down from places that are elevated. Much as I hate to admit it, I feel that in ways I never used to.
Sometimes I think back to that first weight set and the feeling I got when I realized I could feel myself getting stronger.
Loved it and have never lost the joy it brings.
The hard part now isn’t age and the changes that have come with it. It is 187 things going on that have me working out priorities and responsibilities.
It is the time commitment and trying to decide where to pull from.
The challenges those bring crystallize certain things and remind me that we make time for the people and things that are important to us.
There aren’t many things or people that I take time to chase after or make time for but the gym is one.
The next big challenge is trying to figure out how I want to adjust my diet. Everything is going the right direction but not with the speed I wish, another gift of age.
So decisions have to be made about whether accelerating things make sense and lead to long term changes. There is something to be said for slow and steady.
Got another staycation coming up and am ever so grateful for it because I can see myself wearing down, time to recharge my batteries.
Something tells me 2023 is going to be a hell of a year.
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