Exercise – The Boxing Grannies of South Africa, age 60+

Are you lazy, not wanting to exercise? Well, take a look at this YouTube video “Meet the boxing grannies of South Africa.” The women are aged 60+ and meet twice a week. What I loved about this story/video is the excitement and energy these grannies have for boxing. They are up for a fight!

This is a such an inspiration!

I’ve never boxed, but watching this video brought back memories of “Muhammed Ali.” Like these grannies, I’ve gotta give it a try. They are proof that it’s never to late to try anything.

Exercise, going to the gym… WHY do I resist?

0F0940F2-A9CB-46EC-915C-1EBB132D0C60For over a week, I have resisted going to the gym. I enjoy exercise when I am outside, walking/hiking, I love the fresh air. BUT going to the gym, just hearing the word “gym” makes me resist. Every day, I have good intentions; yet, fail to follow through.

Why? I dislike the extra work of carrying a gym bag, getting there, changing clothes. You see, I am exhausted thinking of this. If it is in the morning and I need to shower, then I have the added stuff (makeup, deoderant (heaven forbid I forget that), work clothes, work shoes) that I need to carry, it gets heavy. At night, if I go home and THINK I will go to the gym after I eat dinner — that does not happen.

Yesterday, I beat myself up over this. I had the self talk conversation in my mind saying, “STOP with the nonsense, get to the gym.”

I’ve been tired lately, so the rebuttle from the “other side” of my brain was being lazy. Take it easy, rest today, go tomorrow. I started to fight those negative thoughts.

As I was deciding which way I would go, my daughter sent me a text, it said, “Look what is on TV at the gym, it’s Brunetti!”

WHAT?? I SMILED REALLY BIG, not CNN, not ESPN, but MHz! Donna Leon’s books have been turned into a mini-series, and “Inspector Brunetti” was on the television.

THIS WAS A GAME CHANGER. I could work out while watching an Italian detective show that takes place in Venice!

Suddenly, my brain did a switch over. Amazing, my mind was “now focused” on the positive aspect of exercising (Inspector Brunetti), which made me forget about the drudgery of carrying my gym bag.

Hallelujah, a major break through!

Hello gym, here I come…

My First Race – Dragon Boat Racing

IMG_3594I heard a team captain say they were “short” one woman to be able to form a team for the Dragon Boat races that were coming up, so I shyly raised my hand.  DONE – I was part of the team!

Our day started at 5 AM on Saturday. We had to drive to the location, set up and prepare for the day’s events. A group got there before us and set up our tents. We all brought food for a pot luck and stored our bags, paddle, etc.  FYI: Never forget your towel and change of clothes. You do get wet, it’s fun, but not if you can’t change your clothes on a cold day.

IMG_3601When we practice we do not have a dragon head on our boat, so I was curious to see how this would look.  I didn’t realize that there is a real drum on the boat too. For those of you who do not know much about dragon boat racing I’ll fill you in. There are 20 paddlers to a boat. The first two paddlers at the front of the boat are called, “the strokes,” they set the pace for the boat.

The drummer uses the drum to set the pace of the strokes, so this person must have a loud voice for all of us to hear. When we are paddling it’s easy to get distracted by the boats next to us and their drum beats. I also learned that you lose time if you look up to see “how” you are doing in the race, best to stay focused and give your strokes ALL you’ve got. Finally, there is the steerperson at the back of the boat, who steers the boat and also gives IMG_3609commands to the paddlers. Here is a glossary of Dragon Boat terms.

We raced about 500 meters in 2.5 minutes. There were four boats racing at once and it took a little time to get us ALL lined up. I know 2.5 minutes might not seem long, but imagine how you feel when you are doing “planks” at the gym. You start out strong and then your arms get tired and it takes everything you’ve got to keep in the plank position. Same with paddling, you force yourself to continue paddling through the pain and finish STRONG. That’s where the drum beat comes in, it keeps the team focused.

BAD NEWS – We didn’t win!

GOOD NEWS – We had a lot of fun, we worked as a team and after our 3rd time out, we improved our time, and we finished STRONG!  It was a great day!   GO TRY IT!