Tag Archives: YMCA

Walking to the Y…

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Y?  Because I like to.  I live a mile away from the YMCA.  I joined six years ago when I first came to Winston-Salem, because I had to have something to do while waiting.  I was waiting for travel documents to come for my brother and sister-in-law, so they could go to China to get their youngest little girl.  I was waiting to figure out my next steps after having left my husband of thirty-three years.  I was waiting for the marriage to be legally over, and waiting to see who I was and who I could become.

I love my Y.  I lift weights.  I ride a stationary bike.  I take Gentle Yoga classes several times a week, and I’ve met some great people.  I still find refuge in my Yoga class, though I don’t go as regularly as I did in the early days.  My life has gotten happily busier!  Nowadays, I walk.  I used to walk with a friend who lived around the corner, but she moved away, so now I just walk by myself.

I do some of my best blog writing when I walk.  Often, I will be inspired with a topic, and this past week was no exception.  This post is the result. 

Walking is scenic.  It is rhythmic, and it is meditative.  It takes one whole rosary to get to the front steps, and coming home, I usually work out a blog post in my head.  Often, I remember it, and write and post.  Many times, I don’t remember what I’d thought to write, only to have it pop up later.

It’s a gift to be able to live in such a beautiful and pedestrian-friendly place.  It’s a gift to exercise my body and my mind.  It’s a gift to be among friendly, kind, funny faces who greet me with welcoming  words when I’ve missed a few classes.  Walking to the Y is one of my gratitudes, often.  Walking to the Y has been a huge part of who I am and who I have become.  Who could ask for more?  Prayers and fitness, and working out in more ways than one.   It doesn’t get any better than this.  Look at the photo.  Get it?IMG_2651.JPG

“Y”…”M”…”C”…”A”…

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I’m not sure The Village People’s idea of the “Y” is the same as mine, but perception is reality, some say, so this is my reality. I go to the Y every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, if I don’t substitute or if I am sick, or out of town. That is to say, I am a regular.

I do three things and then leave. I lift weights, I ride a stationary recumbent bike, and I take a Gentle Yoga class. I know. I don’t nearly take advantage of my membership, and I am fully aware of that, but there it is. I am satisfied, and probably won’t change any time soon.

I do love my choices, however. As of this morning, I have lifted nearly 1.7million pounds of weights in four and a half years. That is more that 201 elephants, and even I cannot grasp that concept. I never knew I would like this activity so much. I grew up a reader, not a do-er.  The weight lifting is really good for my bones, my core, and my general wellbeing. I like the fact that record-keeping is involved, so that I know how much I have lifted. A computer keeps score for me, and that is motivating.

I ride the recumbent bike because I have a half hour between the times I claim my spot in the yoga room, and when class actually begins. I’m already there. I might as well be doing something. Something that I can do while I read is very appealing. (See being a reader statement above.) There are only three recumbents in the cardio room, and apparently others are appreciating the opportunity to multitask, so I may have to switch to a different kind of bike. I am not looking forward to that because it will make reading more difficult.

Then, there’s my yoga class. This is really what brings me to the Y. I began practicing yoga just before I left Arizona. My former spouse and I took private classes from a lovely South African lady. She led us through a different routine every session, which always extended well beyond our hour. When I came to North Carolina, I found the darkened yoga room a solace. I could lie on my back with the tears flowing into my hair, and no one knew. My mat was my island, and the predictable routine our instructor led was peaceful. Through these brief years, my balance has improved as well as my posture. Though I know most of the regulars by name, I still find comfort in the darkness, the quiet, and the dependability of each session. Namaste, by the way.

My new life isn’t so new anymore, but I find it gratifying to reflect on where I started, and how far I have come in this journey. This is a good place for me, my life is simple, and the YMCA is a huge part of it all. Me and The Village People…hoo-boy.

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