Amie Reiman: Ladies, I Worked Out At ‘The Y’ Which Is Basically Like Working Out In Full Camouflage

Mar 4, 2019
My YMCA story. Fun times at the Y. Gym images

My YMCA story starts in the women’s change room at 8 AM on a Monday morning. It’s an important part of my YMCA story since it’s why I am at the gym in the first place. Note to self: look into breast lift and wrinkle cream preventatively.

Okay, it isn’t and shouldn’t be that bad. But I am dramatically stating the point. Because I was a 30-something-year-old woman with chronic pain, who was overweight (for my height). At my timing and pace, I ventured into the craptastic world of “gymming”. Can’t say I loved the idea of the gym, but the community at the Y appealed to me. So, I started the experience (not routine) with a low-intensity Latin dance cardio class. I have never had the pleasure of seeing so many wiggling Asian, Latin dancers in my life. Boy some of them could MOVE! I was in the back of the room, sweating balls and tripping over my feet. I could move… but not well. About 22.5 minutes into the class, I called it a shift. I lurked at the back, like the physically challenged overheated beginner that I was.

On to the pool portion of my YMCA story…

I’ve been a water baby all my life:

  • From Lifeguarding
  • To teaching Private Lessons as a teenage hustler.

That’s exactly why I love to swim. Anyone who is anyone will also tell you that swimming is good for you. I mean weightless, wet, semi-nude? If only my sex life were that exciting (existent)? Moving on…

Diving into this aquatic abyss and feeling my muscles relax is why I enjoy my time at the cottage on the lake. As it is in my muscle memory to tread and stroke. The water glides past me until the smoker in me dies of exhaustion. Fell off the smoker wagon again – a constant struggle. Aquafit was a pleasant surprise. Because Margaret, Peggy, Sue, Gladys, and I formed a tight posse. I felt young. I still got out early…. No judgment.

I have always enjoyed seniors…

And this time of day works for me. I was saying this time last year: “It takes more time to do everything.” Now, I am saying: “I am taking more time to do everything.” This wasn’t by choice. I hit an actual nerve, and this forced me to slow the “F” down. Much like a senior mentality and state. Although this is a stereotype of course! Because the retirees plugged away in an Olympian-like way, and did:

  • Weight lifting
  • And marathon running!

Their lifestyle upbringings likely allowed for that result. Or maybe they worked hard to train, condition and allowed time to make an impact. Who knows. I can only ever speak for me. Although I did find it both relaxing and encouraging. The incognito-ness of the whole experience also played out well for me. As I had not yet stepped foot in the actual weight lifting areas. Other members of a gym or recreation center likely feel self-conscious at some point and probably have a YMCA story similar to mine. And that’s yet another example of health in progress. Nothing will happen overnight. But commitment, time and comfort need to be top of the line on the journey.

So, Y – I think you sold me, and you didn’t find me – I found you.

Contributing Writers

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