For several years I have had a weak knee with a lot of pain. Stairs were difficult for me and sometimes just walking was hard and painful. I seldom take a pain reliever, so I suffered in silence (most of the time). My children were gone living their own lives, my husband had his hobbies and interests, so now was the time for me. It was time that I fixed my broken body.
The first thing I did was take time to develop a way to eat that would not only help me lose weight (that I desperately needed to lose), but would also make me feel better. It was up and down for a few months until I hit my stride and found what worked for me. (That's a topic for a later blog.) But once I found it, it was easy. You have to find something you can live with and it's an individual thing.
I have always walked. However, in the years just prior to my retirement, my walking had taken a side position in my life and the weight was pouring on, also depression was hitting me hard. So, the first thing I did while figuring out my eating changes, was to start walking on a regular basis.
After a few weeks, I started feeling better and better. I started feeling like I used to feel when I took better care of myself (my younger self). Within a few months, I decided to buy myself a bike, a nice touring bike. The first time I got on it, I fell on the concrete floor of my garage. Let me tell you, it hurt.
I decided I needed more work on my knee before trying that again. What was I going to do to get my knee strong again and pain free? I decided to go talk to a YMCA Gym Coach. After talking to the coach I decided to join the YMCA and go under her guidance for a session of four weeks. The coach gave me so many choices in exercises to do that I never got bored. After about five months of working out, I was able to do some of the weight machines that had previously hurt my knee so much I wasn't able to do them. With each month that passed, I was able to do more and more. I continued to workout at the YMCA and walk at least a mile, most of the time two to four miles a day and on occasion six miles a day.
As I was coming around the indoor track on my second of sixteen laps to do, I noticed that no one was on the track but me, so why not? Why not try to either sprint, jog, or run? What did I have to lose, no one would witness the fall or the failure, it was just me against me. So I went for it. Something I haven't been able to do for over two decades, I sprinted! I sprinted four full laps which equals a quarter of a mile!
I still can't ride the bike, yet - but I know it is only a matter of time. I intend to keep working towards that goal.
This story has a purpose other than just bragging on myself.....although I am really proud of this accomplishment. ☺ The higher purpose of this personal story is to demonstrate that if we really want something, we can find a way to do it and we should never give up.
The sprint didn't happen overnight. It was after I took "baby steps" and slowly worked my way back up to good health. That is what we have to do at our age....the over 50 adult. We have to set reasonable goals, with a reasonable plan to achieve those goals, and then do it!
I could have given up and said this hurts too much,
this is too slow I will never be better,
or I could have just given up because it was hard.
I didn't. I stayed with it.
You can, too!
Decide what it is you want to do, make a plan, and then do it! Nothing ever gets done by just hoping for it or wishing for it or thinking about it...it takes action, it takes determination, it takes slow and easy at our age.
Over 50 is not a time to stop or even slow down (maybe a little, but not unless you have to). It is a time to focus on yourself and your health. It is a time to realize those goals you have and work toward them. It is a time to have fun and live.
It was only a quarter mile sprint, not much to some people, but to me it was a big deal. To me, it was a milestone reached. Now I want to take it to the next level and I feel good about it.
Do you have something you want to do and you are thinking you are too old? Have you taken "baby steps" to work towards a goal? Do you celebrate your accomplishments no matter how small they may seem? I did! I immediately called two people to tell them I sprinted a quarter mile - my husband and my sister...and they were both proud of me. Celebrate your accomplishments, no matter how small.