When George tells me during tennis to jump, I am inclined not to ask "how high?" but to say to myself instead "no way."
My theory is that I was given long arms so that I could avoid jumping. Only kidding. Sort of.
I am mentioning this because earlier this week, when I returned to exercise class at the Y, the class started doing double jumping jacks, making me think I might just leave. (I had missed a month of these classes: two weeks for stitches in my right arm and two weeks for stitches in my left.)
But then I told myself: Modify according to your ability. So I took steps instead of jumps, and I warmed up enough so that by the time we jumped rope (minus the rope) I was actually able to get my feet off the ground the tiniest amount.
I am always relieved when we move on to lifting weights, although this is not my favorite thing either. I do it because with five-plus years of prednisone in my system, I feel like it is a health need for me to continue working on my strength since prednisone is known to weaken your muscles.
Also, years ago, even before cancer, my friend Jo, a personal trainer (the same Nurse Jo who removes my stitches), told me that none of us should just run or play tennis: We really need to do strength training also.
I am told by a friend who is into weight-lifting that if you do it enough, it gives you the same endorphins that you get from running, but that requires more commitment than I think I have.
I have also been told I should give Pilates another try. I much prefer yoga for its all-around benefits. Plus I can't take on the expense of another class.
The Pilates class at the Holyoke Y doesn't fit my schedule, but I did notice that the Northampton Y, where you can go with a Holyoke membership, has many more offerings.
In fact, as I am finishing this up at 8:30 in the morning, I should leave in 15 minutes if I am going to get to Sunday morning Pilates in Northampton. Sundays are for the New York Times, two cups of coffee, Meet the Press...
Will I be able to get myself out the door? Now that I have announced the challenge, I will try very hard.