Father Maxamillian Kolbe used to tell his brother friars to stay fit. Seems like good adivice for anyone. Problem is all that slugging and dragging oneself around a track, up a hill, across a beach, through a gymn, over an assault course, and back in through the kitchen towards the shower, doesn’t get any easier when the old bones begin to creek and the effects of genetic entropy seem to accelerate. Anyway, enough of the excuses for not at least trying to stay fit enough tot walk the length of oneself. Father Kolbe’s advice is sound.
What’s the best way to go about it? Just do it. Dream as you exercise: imagine you’re not 50 but 20! Remember the team you always wanted to play for – maybe they’ll come looking for you next week! Nah, unlikely, but the dream is enjoyable all the same. And from the dream one can build a routine. Some of us, for example, still want to play football/soccer – by the way, the North American usage of ‘soccer’ seems simply to be derived from the term socius, socii, which gives rise the word ‘association’ (as in Football Association!). Back to the point: if soccer’s your sport then even at fifty you can get a ball out and start refreshing your old skills. Try and see how many times you can keep the ball up (a good work out for the calfs); try and see how many thrown-in (shys) you can do in five minutes (a good upper body work out); etc. Here’s what an olddie (me!) did recently. Build it to suit you and your old-sport. If you can get a team of pensioners then why not. Rugby is more problematic – the bones break more easily when smashing into zimmer frames/walkers!!! What happens if you twist and ankle or bust your knee? Get a life – it’s part of the madness. So here’s a routine.
- 5 minutes of jogging and kicking a ball around a field; followed by 10 push-ups.
- 5 minutes of keepy-up; followed by 10 push-ups.
- 5 minutes of keepy-up headers; followed by 10 push-ups
- 5 minutes of target practice (you don’t want to miss a penalty in the World Cup Final!); followed by 10 push-ups.
- 5 minutes of goal keeping practice (kick the ball off a wall and dive to save it – get up quick and do it again); followed by 10 push-ups.
- 5 minutes of throw-ins (aim at a target, getting further away each time); followed by 10 push-ups.
- 5 minutes of tricks – pretend you’re Cruffy, Pele, Messi, or Maradonna; followed by 10 push-up.
- 5 minutes of sprints with the ball – boot it and chase it; followed by 10 push-ups.
It’s half-time!! If you can play the second half it’s because you’re thirty years younger than some of us. Still, we can dream of coming out for the next 45 – and leaving the Nike clad, tattoo infested, premadonnas behind! Just a dream – but it keeps one relatively fit. And Father Kolbe knew what he was talking about, even although it’s said he never exercised – maybe he knew about the ‘hand of God’!!!