Thursday, December 18, 2014

Christmas Present to Me from Me.

This week as I lay on my Pilates mat quietly hoping the instructor wouldn't notice if I cheated a bit I began to marvel that this room was full of women from their mid forties to their mid seventies. Most of us have been taking these classes together for over five years. 

We don't have much time to share stories as Cara is a taskmaster when it comes to paying attention to our bodies and not to our mouths during class. She herself tells a good story so we are often well entertained. But I know that one has a niece going through a messy divorce, another has two children who have moved out of the family home, (empty nester), one who has downsized to a two bedroom apartment, one who lives with a cousin who isn't well. They all have been the keenest purchasers of my novel and are asking for the sequel. Great group of women!!

We lay together sweating and hoping that this time it won't hurt quite as much and we may finally get that damn teaser just right.

What I am learning working out with these fine women is that our bodies are so much more important than what we put on them. We may comment on a new bright exercise shirt or top or someone's sparkly socks and occasionally one of us will come with our faces made up which is a signal that something is happening after class. But all of us are fitter, stronger and more nimble than when we started Pilates. 
The mats we lie on!

No one has quit. Some take some time off for biking in Europe, spending time in the south or caring for grandchildren but they all come back. A bit concerned that they are out of shape again but determined to get it back.

I have decided that I cannot pay close attention to what my body needs to be healthy and strong if I only pay attention to what I put on it.  The layer that I  want others to see and like. I slipcovered my old sofa and I love what it did for the old thing but it is still a bit too soft and we have to keep moving the cushions that slip down the back. When we get tired of doing this that sofa will be gone from here. I cannot throw out my old bones or tight muscles or angry digestive system. If they go chances are good I will be on my way too.







When I see these ladies outside the studio they look great. Well dressed and made up just right for their ages. But I also see their straight backs and the ease with which they move.


We are taking classical Pilates developed by Joseph Pilates

My goal is to stop myself from buying any more clothes until I have firmly embedded the importance of keeping my body in good form both physically and nutritionally. I am not looking to be the fitness queen of my age group but maybe just the one with the fewest aches and pains. The odd threadbare sweater or the same outfit worn multiple times will serve as a reminder of my quest.




Wish me luck.


11 comments:

  1. Yay you! Have never tried Pilates but I have vowed to get fully back into yoga in the new year for the same reason!

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    1. Hoping my "not buying any new clothes" plan will keep my head focussed on my body. Sad isn't it that a grown woman has such little will power that she has to play games to make her do something. We always grow older but we don't always grow up!! ( at least I haven't)

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  2. I told my class tonight about your Pilates practice. I told them how much you hate the circle. They agreed as they performed their roll ups while holding it. xo

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    1. Thought about you in class today when Cara was talking about the sayings her mother has. She says she remembers them all and tries to follow most of them. Made me think of you telling a class about how I am in your head a lot of the time telling you stuff. I'm not hating the circle as much as I once did since there are other things that I hate more! Like the teaser in all its forms.

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  3. What an admirable goal, Mary. You can do it just like you manage to do everything else....

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    1. Thanks Barb I can only hope you are right!

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  4. I love Pilates! It's all about the mobility, something I thought almost nothing about until the last Big Birthday. Now, I have some limitations I'm determined to work through. One knee no longer cooperates with some movements, but most still work. I find it amazing for hip related pain. Is there Pilates-yoga fusion up there? I like that too. I find I no longer take classes, but I should instead of doing it on my own at home.

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    1. My eldest daughter is a Pilates instructor in Toronto and she has taken courses on how to use Pilates for injuries. She also works part time in a physio therapist's office where clients are referred to Pilates after the physiotherapist does the acute work. Our studio owner is a Joseph Pilates purist so does not mix Pilates with anything else although she does have a yoga instructor working out of the studio. I have to pay money for a class otherwise not much gets done!!

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  6. After years of spinning and the gym, I have added in gyrotonics which is taught at our ballet company here, one to one, posture is everything post 50.

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  7. Don't know gyrotonics, will have to look it up. I am with you on the posture!

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