When we are young, healthy, and have an abundance of self-confidence; we cannot wait to hit the dance floor. We didn’t look at it as part of a fitness program. It was just fun. Depending on your age, you may have rocked it out with the King of Rock-N-Roll, Elvis Presley. Maybe you more into The Beatles or Three Dog Night. If it was playing on the cassette player, you were dancing.
But then mother nature played a dirty trick on us. We fell in love. We held hands with our “free-love” partner. We said some vows that we made up, promising our devotion and unending love till death do we part, as long as we were compatible.
We soon discovered that we were going to bring a life into the world. We promised each other we would have a natural birth, feed our child only breast milk, and never would pollute the earth with disposable diapers.
Our first journey to the road back to health
We welcomed the growth of our child, and keeping in shape was a secondary issue. Even dad packed on a few extra pounds. After all, he had to support his wife.
A change of mind
Finally, our delivery date had arrived. At first, it was what we expected, and we thought what kind junkie needs a drug for childbirth? Then mom and dad realized that childbirth was not as easy as we thought. Mom breathes through each contraction until a new pain began soon after one stopped. Regular pains, 3-minutes apart and 6 hours into labor, the doctor announced that you were doing great. You were dilated 4 cm, and you only had to go to 10 cm. A voice came from your lips, unlike anything you had heard before. The voice uttered one word. “Epidural.”
You gave up plans of dinner and dancing, for PB&J sandwiches between and quick naps in between the moments when the child would latch on to the breast and quickly fall asleep leaving you to spend 45 minutes to get the baby to wake up periodically and take a few sips of milk. As for cloth diapers versus disposable; you found your dedication finishing line. You still wanted to save the planet but decided disposable diapers in a landfill would prevent any alien life source from coming to Earth, and you were good with that.
Time to get back in shape
Before you know it, you are super-cool, middle-aged hippies. Your child is in pre-school, and you have time to get back to being a couple. You threw out all the junk food, replaced the soda in the fridge for water. And you teamed up with a couple of friends who decided to join you on your journey back to your glory days. You all knew the gym was not the place for you. The idea of walking in the gym in your warm-up suit and headband, among men who looked like when they born, they could bench press 100 pounds.
It is no better for the women. They spend 45 minutes struggling to put on a leotard. Then they look in the mirror and see more rolls than the local bakery. They pulled on an old (large) tee shirts and tried to cover up.
Then they walk into a gym full of beautiful women with perfect bodies. You wonder if you wandered into a Miss America pageant, but I’m afraid not.
As your group nurses their wounds at the nearest Starbucks, someone suggests dance. This gets everyone’s attention. I mean, you could “cut the rug” in your day. Doing The Pony, The Jerk, and The Hustle; you were unbeatable.
It is a great idea. You want a group that fits your personality and style. You can order matching tee shirts, and anything else that will make you feel athletic, and part of the team.
There was only one item that was essential. Everyone needs dance shoes. It is a requirement for the protection of the floor and your body. Dance shoes are not just for fun. They protect and support the legs, feet, and several illnesses that can help protect the boy. Great pants are also a must, something that will “give your performance a bold, playful edge” (source: www.justforkix.com).
You are excited that you have support from people like you. You cannot wait to get your body back.
First, you can dance your way to the land of lean. If you are over 50-years old, you need a dance club that caters to your age groups. It is up to you, who you want in your club. You want people that you can have fun with.
People who are over fifty may find that the center part of your muscles fights back. To build or rebuild muscles, it takes repetition. When you dance, you work on the muscles, and the more you dance, the more you build them. You do not have to dance well to accomplish this. It is about movement. You can be doing your version of the Funky Chicken, and you will reap the benefits of dance.
Tip: be sure you can trust your dance team because a group of middle-aged folks trying to do the Funky Chicken is YouTube gold.
If you are out of shape, and you have painful areas, like the knees and the back, you may need to work with water aerobics until you build your muscles. The resistance from moving in the water burns calories and builds muscles.
You can get healthy, and it doesn’t have to be torture. You will need to cut back on unhealthy foods. You will have to burn excess calories. Dance is a great way to have fun with your friends while you work toward your goal. Get some dance sneakers, pick up a CD of those golden oldies, and cut loose. You will look great, feel great, and be ready for those summer swimsuits before you know it.
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