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I Gained 15 Pounds!

On Saturday, I rode my bike to Redlands and then back through Loma Linda to my friend’s ranch to pick up two ten-pound bags of oranges. My goal was to deliver them to a few of our seniors who live alone and need a little cheering up during this crazy time.

I had a bike bag and a backpack and filled the backpack to the brim. The rest went into the carrier attached to my bike.

I could barely pick up the backpack because it was so heavy! I swung it around onto my back and then swung my leg over the seat and began pedaling home. The weight on my back and bike was overwhelming, but I knew I could do it.

It was only 12 miles, with one decent sized climb up Barton Road. The rest of the ride was fairly flat or even downhill, but boy did I ever feel it.

My heart was working overtime. The pressure on my seat was getting more and more uncomfortable. I was panting, which is rare on this route, and I could barely talk.

All that kept going through my head was that this is how people feel when they gain weight; their body has to work harder to do the simplest things and it is the very reason we love water so much. It is the place where we can move successfully and burn calories without joint pain. It’s the place where we feel light, buoyant and free. It is our happy place.

When I got home, I got to take off the backpack. I lost15 pounds in an instant and I felt such relief. But what about my participants who can’t just drop 15 pounds? How do they deal with the effects of this burden?

For now, we do the best we can with our land exercises and making healthy diet choices until we can enter a pool again. We need to continue to take care of ourselves the safest way possible and try to keep our spirits up until we meet again.

The other thought that came to me during my ride is that we need to step in other people's shoes for just a moment so that we can feel their pain, their frustration, their discomfort and then reach out and try to offer hope.

That is always my goal when I teach classes, but is even more laser-focused now that I carried that weight. I will continue to try to help you move until we get back in the pool and all I ask is that you don’t give up.

We will be back.

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