Boyle McCauley News

Since 1979 • October-November 2022 • Circulation 5000

Joys of New Activities

For some crazy reason, the subject of recreation sent me back to grade school recess and gym class, both of which were excruciatingly painful for clumsy me. You’ve heard of the last kid picked for the team – well, that was me. I think it was those feelings that set me up for a greatly sedimentary life.

Things have improved in the last couple of years. I took up yoga about a year and a half ago, which helped me discover some strengths I didn’t know I had. The class is $3 at 3:30 p.m. on Thursdays at the Boyle Street Plaza. I’ve finally learned that I’m much more flexible than I ever imagined. I guess that’s the thing about recreational activities – when you find something you’re good at it builds your sense of self, otherwise called self-esteem. So, after nearly 50 years I can shake the self image of being clumsy. There are lots of good programs at the Boyle Street Community League, so check them out.

Taking up a new activity and practicing until you get good at it spreads happy feelings to other parts of your life. About the same time I took up yoga, I got a young, full of enthusiasm lab cross who requires long daily walks. We walk from three to seven kilometres a day, no matter the weather. I was surprised to find out that this is about the same mileage that someone training for a marathon puts on, and the first time I have even come close to doing anything athletic. It’s not only good for the body, but great for the soul.

The beauty of the river valley never ceases to amaze me: the river glittering in sunlight; the trees catching the light of the sun; seeing the moon when it first appears on the horizon in its largest splendour. We’ve formed a community down in the valley. We all refer to each other as whose mom and dad we are: Chico’s mom and Ben’s dad, etc. The cardiovascular exercise and the vitamin D just flooding your body helps cure what ails you. Just being in nature lifts your spirits. Any activity that increases you heart rate has an uplifting effect.

I know many people are so stressed with the demands of work and family, that they have little energy left over for themselves. However, it’s like the stewardess says on the plane: you have to put your air mask on first and then worry about everybody else. So, I think that we all deserve to take a little time for ourselves and do something that elevates our heart rates.

Manon is a resident of Boyle Street and an active volunteer in the community. This column contains her own opinions, and is not affiliated with the Boyle Street Community League.

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