Regular visits to the gym are not an addiction; it is a healthy life style. If a healthy life style is an addiction, I am in. I always lead an active life style. When I was a child, I was enrolled in figure skating for 5 years. As a teen, I occasionally jogged, skied, played tennis and ping-pong with friends and my dad. I was always naturally slim, so exercising was not a remedy to lose weight; it was to ward off diseases or to make me physically stronger.
I was not born strong. I was actually a very weak and small child, prone to infections, fainting, colds and flu, and nose bleeds, to name a few. I had no muscle strength what so ever. The only gifts god blessed me with: good proportions and coordination. I could run fast, jump high, but I could not lift anything heavy. My delicate constitution made me look attractive in the eyes of the general public, but it did not help my endurance on the job. I got tired very easily and after days of intense work I would completely collapse (pass out or get sick with flu like symptoms, migraines, allergies, you name it). I was determined to make myself stronger, so I joined a local gym 20 years ago. It is not the same health club, though, I had moved on to a better one.
Currently, I am a member of Lakeview Athletic Club (LVAC) in Chicago, Illinois. I exercise three times a week: Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, usually in the morning. My routine consists of one hour group fitness class (Workout Challenge, Tubing, or Hard Core), a half an hour sauna, a shower, and a quick swim in the pool, and I am ready to face the world. I have stuck to the same schedule, more or less, for the past 20 years. Even though, my life does not stay the same, I try to keep up with my physical fitness. If my work schedule or my other responsibilities such as being a mom, do not allow me to go to the gym at my usual time of the day, I will make it up at some other time. It is not a big deal. LVAC offers tons of classes and activities seven days a week for people of different ages, interests, physical fitness, and marital status. This particular health club offers a variety of activities for families with children, such as: Family Swim and Supervised Wall Climbing on Saturday and Sunday afternoons. There are private swimming lessons for children and adults, nutritional programs, spinning classes with live music, ballet and dance lessons, boot camps, and much more.
The welcoming atmosphere of LVAC and my own determination to stay fit, make my visits to the gym pleasant for the most part. I feel energetic, strong, and ready for new challenges. As a photographer I need all the above. I am always on my feet with my not so light of a camera in hands, and I constantly on the move to take a great shot. On my job, the bodily strength and sharpness of mind are the must I cannot live without, and the gym helps me to stay that way.