In my twenties when I started running and doing high impact aerobics (on cement floors!), I stayed relatively fit. I used to say to myself, if I run and work out with this hangover (even in 98 degrees!) that will prove I don’t have a drinking problem. Guess what? Being gratefully sober now for 27 years, I have heard so many stories similar to mine with the reasons and excuses for why we weren’t alcoholics (only wine, just on weekends, have a PhD, I’m a nice person, and on and on …).

Throughout those 27 years, I have kept fit with more high impact aerobics, Jazzercise, low impact aerobics, golf, step classes, yoga, running, biking, interval training, private trainer (when I broke my foot), and whatever else was out there to do.

Sometimes I consider myself a high-maintenance woman because if I don’t work out 6-7 times a week, I lose my flexibility not only physically but emotionally; my passion for working out is wrapped up with my spiritual and emotional equilibrium. So, I need to block off time for recovery groups, yoga, and challenging workouts.

When my husband died 10 years ago, I had just turned 50. It was a long and harrowing dying process for him hence a devastating yet transformative time for me. If you haven’t gone through grief yet, you won’t understand, but for the first 5 years after he died, my exercise regime was one of the mainstays of my life. Tears would flow down my face through yoga class and savasana but my heart stayed open. I started Soul Cycle classes then too. Not only do I love the music and atmosphere (all of the above in SC) but because of the inspiring nature of the classes, I would leave them feeling strong.

I would feel strong because I kept in touch with my strength; I would feel hopeful because I felt limitless. I don’t know why but I was gifted with a sense of resiliency and I am so grateful that I had places to go where I was supported while my soul healed.