Thursday, September 22, 2011

Social Interaction

Another quote from “Younger Next Year”: "Hey, I've got a neat idea! Let's go down to the gym and lift incredibly heavy weights until it hurts like crazy and we have to stop!"

When Michael (19 year old soccer player) and I get into working out we are like a couple of kids – each trying to outdo the other. OK, a little unbalanced, he is only 19, poor guy really doesn’t have a chance, but he is gaining. Fast.

Many days after our 90 minutes of weight training we are both so pumped we do a couple of quick sets of chin-ups.

We both really, really get into working out – and a large part of that is the camaraderie we share. And the satisfaction.

Before I retired Kelly was concerned about my need for social interaction, and how I would satisfy my need for interacting with people after I quit the 9 to 5. Fortunately my rather extensive clock fascination gives me a lot of contact with others who either want to buy an antique clock or who love to work on them. But, even with all that interaction, my daily dose of people-time at the gym has become my primary social reality. Of course, that also means I have to be outgoing, talk to people, and work out hard enough that people want to talk to me – to get pointers, or motivation.

Talking to another guy at the gym, big guy, very strong, the type you would not want to cross, he almost waxed poetic when he was talking about how fundamentally good he feels when he is working out.

I said almost poetic – he doesn’t look like the type that would want to be described as a poet.

My message here is pretty simple - old, young, in between: Work out, and, in the process, build a social network at your gym so that working out becomes a satisfying element in your life. Of course, if you wait till you retire to start working out you will have the chance to see truly amazing improvements. Just be very careful as you get started to keep from damaging joints, muscles and ligaments that haven’t had to work for a long time.

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