Saturday, September 8, 2012

Rainy Day Exercise

Walking is as regular a part of our morning schedule as our devotions. Our goal is to walk two miles each morning – and each evening – at a brisk pace. Sometimes, however, we don’t achieve that plan, especially when we are traveling and need to get on our way.

Rainy mornings present a different problem. In spite of rain jackets and umbrellas, it’s messy to walk in the rain. We drag mud into our "house" and have to find a spot in our limited space to hang our wet clothes and umbrellas to dry.

But we’ve found a great alternative form of exercise for rainy mornings. We practice our dance steps in the living room. An hour of dance practice certainly feels like the equivalent of a two-mile walk. We end up just as breathless, sweaty and tired as if we had walked!

There are, however, some special challenges in this rainy day routine. The living room in our fifth wheel – even with the slide extended – is about the size of two double bed mattresses laid end to end! We can take up all the throw rugs and move all the chairs out of the way but that doesn’t make it any bigger, just safer.

There’s room for the two of us to practice an "Electric Slide" or an "Elvira." But a "Flying Eight" is likely to leave one of us spread-eagled on the kitchen table and the other face down in a rocking chair! "Footloose," even the slow version, will send one of us slamming into the refrigerator door and the other tripping over the raised edge of the slide! That’s no fun.

If we’re careful to take small steps, we can usually do a "98.6": or a "Cowboy Charleston" without bodily injury. "Mustang Sally" and "Cowboy Cumbiya" fit the space fairly well. The turning "Cowboy Cha-cha" always leaves me dizzy so it’s nice to have a soft chair nearby to collapse into.

We can even practice some stepped down versions of a few couples’ dance step, such as "Blue Rose," "Sixteen Step," and "Waltz Across Texas" (although waltzing across our living room the scenery is much more boring!). We do have to forego some of the more expansive and space consuming moves such as turns and twirls. We really don’t want to risk Medicare raising our rates because of overuse!

By this time we are as wet as if we’d been outside walking in the rain. So, it’s time to quit, take a shower, and then try to find a place to hang up our wet clothes to dry. Maybe tomorrow the sun will shine.