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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Hard and Soft (04/23/09)

TITLE: Living better
By dub W


It was noon and I was late. My appointment was to be before lunch, but somehow the routine of life changed my plans, or perhaps it was procrastination. Never the less, I would probably be laughed out of the building. In my sixty two years of “the good life,” church dinners, family reunions, cub scout banquets, and political pig picken’s, I had, for all intensive purposes, grown a second person into my body – indeed, I was fat, soft, and out of shape.

The mania and push to do something about my rotundness was to attempt to find a health club, the avant-garde, term for a “gym,” was doctor ordered. Our village has quite a number of these organizations. Not the least of which is our local YMCA.

Dollar for dollar, the Y is a great buy, though more than I wanted to spend, considering it would also be a 16+-mile drive. The Y also had more programs and facilities than I would ever need. I put the Y on the maybe list.

The next biggest club was a good 30 minutes away from my home, and I couldn’t see myself fighting traffic more than a couple of times per week. Additionally, during my visit I noticed an abundance of small children running around. I love my grandkids, but I don’t even want them to see me suffering in the gym. I put the club second on my list.

A major chain health club was within driving distance, with good parking, and a great name. In fact, once a member there, I could use my membership anywhere in the world that the club existed – hundreds of locations. That might have been important, if I started traveling again. I made a visit and was greeted by a muscle bound “jock” who did a great job of selling the benefits of belonging to their organization, but a lousy job of showing me the facility. In fact, I could barely hear the man over the pounding rock music. I left, no I escaped with the man following me out the door waving a free pass.

Next, I looked into one of the two 24 hour clubs nearby. Okay, if a person is in a hurry to sweat, and then get into their car and drive home, I suppose the 24 hour club is okay. My visit felt like I was entering a hotel workout room.

Finally, someone suggested a new health club near my home. The owners belong to our church. I thought, why not, a visit couldn’t hurt. And that was the appointment I was late to. I sat in my car and contemplated the visit. I had determined that if the salesperson tried to push the club off on me I would make a break for it, so I parked my car with the nose headed out, I even considered leaving the engine running.

Finally, my soft pudgy body moved to the door. I expected when I entered to be met with a dozen hard bodied twenty something’s pumping small pickups and runway models dressed in the best of the fashion industry.

Instead, what I met was a professional and immaculately clean true health club, with men my age and women whose interest was more in saving their own lives, rather than impressing anyone with their gym wear. There were a few younger women, military wives, working off stress. Also, a couple of young women trying to recapture what ever it was they had before they said, “I do.” Generally, though, most of the members there the day of my first visit, were my age or older, all struggling to live a little better, by feeling better.

The man I met with was one of the owners. He wasn’t much concerned with my lateness, but very concerned with seeing me getting to feel better. He showed me around the facility, explained how physical fitness and nutrition plans for older adults worked. Even suggested a typical routine I could use. I was invited to look in and participate on the aerobics, yoga, and other classes; and finally, I was given a wide option of member levels. Though a couple of dollars more than some clubs, it fits me perfectly. And, the club is just 4 minutes from my home. Who knows, maybe someday this 62 year old soft body will be a “perfect 10” hard body.

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This article has been read 540 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Bryan Ridenour04/30/09
A fun read. Nicely done.
Seema Bagai 04/30/09
Glad the MC found the right place to exercise. :)
Marilyn Schnepp 05/02/09
Entertaining read, and you gave me a great idea...to follow your example! Thanks, I think I'll shop around. Well written and definately on Topic! Nicely done.
Jae Blakney05/04/09
I like the subtle sense of humor. I did see a few errors in punctuation, tense and number.
Shelley Ledfors 05/04/09
Very nice. Great take on the topic and an enjoyable read.
Lollie Hofer05/05/09
Great use of this week's theme! I laughed outloud, visualizing the salesman chasing the mc out of the door with that free pass. I enjoy your style of humor.
Patricia Turner05/05/09
I hope your MC succeeds in becoming a "hard body" - nice inspiration for us all!
Betty Castleberry05/06/09
Why does this sound like it's a true story? :0)

I liked the subtle touches of humor. Nicely done.
Verna Cole Mitchell 05/06/09
Now that's the kind of health club I might like. You kept it interesting, describing your trials in finding the right one. I like the way your personality slips through.
Beckie Stewart05/06/09
Like this gentle approach to this difficult subject for many.
Kimberly Russell05/06/09
Really enjoyed your humor- nicely done.
Myrna Noyes05/06/09
I really enjoyed reading this, Dub, especially since I've also read some of what you've written on the weight loss thread!

This line was one of my favorites: "Finally, my soft pudgy body moved to the door. I expected when I entered to be met with a dozen hard bodied twenty something’s pumping small pickups and runway models dressed in the best of the fashion industry." "Pumping small pickups...! Hee-hee! I got a great "visual" from that description! :)

Thanks for sharing your experiences!