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Senior Exercise ClassA continuation of recovery after my hip replacement surgery.

I was given strict instructions to take it easy (it is hard for me to sit still) for two weeks after my hip replacement surgery. If I couldn’t move the way I did before surgery (keeping in mind my new hip had to stay intact), drive or resume my regular activities with my clients, I needed another plan. Plan B included finding substitutes for my classes at assisted living communities. My private clients were on hold and understood my situation. I started to make arrangements back in June. I didn’t have much choice unless I was going to cancel classes all together and that was a poor option.

There was one particular day I felt as if it were a turning point in my recovery. I found out less than 24 hours before a class that I needed a sub for my sub! If I didn’t, I would have had to cancel. I hated the thought of letting my peeps down. My clients enjoyed staying active and accountable to themselves so they would feel better, remain “balanced” and strong. The substitute trainer dropped the ball. I was so upset. I was professional in my response, but truly, I was screaming in silence. I tried calling other trainers but either they were too busy or weren’t experienced training seniors with chronic physical and cognitive conditions in a group class environment. My clients at the Village at Northridge, who I call “The Village” are precious to me. They are part of my extended family. No one, especially me, was going to let them down. When my mother (who attended class each week for years) was sick and dying, they were my rock of support. I asked my husband (actually begged) to drive me to teach my class. I went in myself…walker and all. I was stunned when I walked into class and was met with applause. It brought me to tears.

Since I’m a spontaneous person, I began class with the exercises I was doing at home for my recovery. I’d explain as I went along, and they seemed to love it. In between sets I would stand up and do a routine we could all follow. It was met with smiles and laughter. That was the best therapy I could have had.

Since then, I have graduated to using my stationary bike, walking more on the flats and hills and stretching enough to feel the difference. I can also balance my left leg better, use weights, resistance bands and my core. I no longer feel sorry for myself when I know each day, with hard work and perseverance, I am improving. Heck, it has only been just over two months! I am not out of the woods yet, but I am getting there.

For now, the best advice I can give anyone is to keep moving, or if you can’t move, get advice from a professional. The payoff is better than you can imagine! If you are not sure how to start with a trainer, it begins with an assessment which includes a partial session. Our FAQ page aka Questions and Answers can be useful. Follow us on Facebook and LinkedIn or get some greats tips on our website at LoriMichielFitness.com. You can also email us or call us at 818-620-1442 for a consultation. All the best! – Lori

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