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Kicking it with Elizabeth Youngman-Westphal


Last updated 8/24/2019 at 11:29am

Remember that silly movie, “If It’s Tuesday, it must be Belgium?” For me, if it’s Tuesday, I must weigh in.

It has been decades since I last walked past a gym – let alone walked in to one.

Like many of you, I am a cancer survivor. I only mention it because should you feel defeated by the disease, car screaming is the thing. It saved me, that and radiation. Here is how it works. Turn the radio up to full blast. And then scream at the top of your lungs. This vocal exercise helps to cast the disease out of your body.

However, the therapy does come with a warning… do not, I repeat, do not scream when at a stop light and someone is next to you.

Cancer patients often turn to God and make “what-if” deals. Mine was “What if you let me reach 40 when my youngest will be out of high school?”

Here I am now anticipating my 75th birthday. As a celebration of it – go figure – I am fulfilling my life’s dream which is to step aboard the Belmond-Templeton Orient Express. I have booked a single cabin for the overnight train ride from Venice to London.

This is a private journey. One earned through countless minutes, hours, days, weeks and years of worrying about dying. After running from death for over 35 years, the worry is gone. I kinda feel like I am winning. Which brings me to this moment.

After the washing machine shrunk yet another pair of new pants, it hit me. This isn’t the woman I want to take to Milan, Venice or London.

United Healthcare provides a free membership at Paradise Fitness. Yes, I said free.

“Exercise” is the only answer I have ever gotten from my all-too-smug young doctor. Every time I suggest my thyroid might be out of whack, he responds with the same old tired answer, “exercise.” Well, we will see who is right. The thyroid or exercise.

I am committed to getting in shape to celebrate my 75th birthday. Even if I prove that little pup of a doctor right, I promised myself to be worthy of this journey. To take the woman I am supposed to be.

My trainer is Kellen. A talkative guy with a solid understanding of how the muscular system works. He has developed a program specifically for the physically disinclined – which would be me. To date, I have not had one day of debilitating muscle soreness. Kellen is not a bodybuilder, he is more of a body shaper.

I admit to being a bridge player. We sit mostly. Unless we walk to the refreshment table. That being our primary form of exercise, in 19 years, I have added as many pounds. Bridge stimulates the mind but does nothing for the figure.

When you read this, I will be on Day 16. Since I leave March 20, 2020, I have plenty of time to find my perfect woman.

Just so you know, after these two weeks of training, often twice a day, Tuesday was my weigh in. I did not drop an ounce.

Although, my husband has lost 10 pounds from our improved diet. Go figure.

I will report every two weeks until I leave. Wish me well and with any luck, I’ll see you at the gym. Toodles.

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