My parents and I recently read the book, (affiliate link) Younger Next Year: Live Strong, Fit, and Sexy – Until You’re 80 and Beyond by Chris Crowley. It’s good. You should get it, or the version he wrote for women. When Dad wrote it, he was simply reassured that he’s doing it right and will likely reach his goal of 152 birthdays. Mom and I both read it and realized we needed to get our shit together and start working out, lifting weights and eat better.
My parents have always been fit and active, but Dad is a machine, regularly playing set after set of tennis, riding long distances on his bicycle and taking turbo walks.
When I first moved back to BC, my Dad was walking 4 miles every other morning and I decided to start tagging along. Our walks take us up several grueling hills to a neighborhood that has fantastic horse trails.
This is what our 6:30am walks look like:
Dad: a relentless staccato like the energizer bunny, legs like pistons fueled by a single cup of coffee with a splash of half and half and a few drops of honey.
Me: trudging, shuffling, jogging a bit to catch up whenever I fall behind, holding onto my boobs when I jog because this is supposed to be a walk and I didn’t put on a sports bra.
Dad: offering up a cheerful hello and a bit of early morning humor to any neighbors we pass; able to provide commentary on everything going on in the neighborhood, and express disapproval at all the empty patios where people should be reading the paper with their morning coffee.
Me: managing to hold my breath and smile so passers by don’t hear my panting and wheezing; occasionally gasping out answers to Dad’s questions or comments, or giving a pathetic excuse for being 10 steps behind him, “I’m having coffee cramps, I think I’m going to shit myself.” “I’m staying back here because I have gas.”
Dad: the only sound I hear is the rhythm of his pace
Me: alternating loud ujaya breath with the aforementioned panting and wheezing, punctuated by Sherapovaesque groans.
Dad: wearing long pants and a long sleeved sweatshirt the entire way unless we start late and the sun is high.
Me: peeling off layers on the first hill, wiping sweat on one sleeve of my hoodie and snot on the other.
Dad: I assume he is being mentally productive, triangulating the errands he has to run later to be most efficient, solving difficult mathematical equations, sending out healing energy to the world.
Me: normally when I jog or walk I silently count steps, 1-2-3-4 as I breathe in, 1-2-3-4 as I breathe out, but trying to keep up with Dad on these hills the numbers don’t cut it, I still breathe on the same rhythm but in my head it goes like: mo-ther-fuck-er as I breathe in, mo-ther-fuck-er as I breathe out.
I forgot to mention earlier that Dad reduced his walking speed when I started joining him on these walks. If he went full turbo I’d lose sight of him in a few minutes.
Also that I’m super grateful to share these morning walks with him because he’s cool as hell.
18 thoughts on “5 Ways My Dad Is More Graceful Than I Am”
Just coming across this post now but I love it. Your dad seems like such a great guy. So happy to have you guys in our school community!
Thanks Nikki! We’re happy to be here and delighted to meet another blogger IRL.
WHAT a blessing to have your dad with you, and to have those mornings with him, even if you have to catch up with him. We just marked 3 years without our dad, and your post is a nice reminder of him.
I can’t even bear the thought of losing my parents. I lived thousands of miles away from them from age 22 to 40 and now I’m making up for lost time. I’m beyond grateful.
Pure exaggeration Lizzie. You’re a badass athlete that can out run, our ride, and out shoot any guy.
Thanks Alfred, you may have just reminded me of the two things I might still be able to do better than my Dad. I need to take him to a gun range and a motocross track.
haha love this! I’ve totally been there with your description of steps and bodily responses as I join others who are blissfully bounding about like Snow White on a trail with the bunnies and birds of nature. Love your poetic prose and gift for description. Fun read. Happy Friday. And yes your dad does rock! 🙂
Growing up with super athletic parents is hard to live up to. Mom and Dad (and my sister) rode their bikes across Canada from coast to coast. They asked if I wanted to join them. I didn’t have to think twice. Nope. LOL On a motorcycle for sure, but on a pedal bike. Nope.
LOL. I run much the same way. Or did when I could. Great tribute to your Dad Lizzie!
Thanks Liv! It’s not getting any easier! On our walk this morning I determined that there must be a physiological deficiency preventing me from keeping up with him. I can jog along beside him with less effort than it takes to match his stride while walking. It’s super frustrating because my legs are longer than his. WTF?
Haha, you sound exactly like I would be! I can just imagine your Dad gracefully running and still being able to chat to everyone, . #wineandboobs
Yeah, he’s is awesome shape. A couple of weeks ago my friend popped by with her super athletic 17 year old son. Dad asked the boy if he wanted to play tennis. He said, “Yes, I play, but it’s been a while, you might beat me.” His mom and I passed a knowing glance because she’s known my Dad since she was 10 and there would be no “might” about it. The boy returned from the court properly humbled!
Haha – Go your Dad! He sounds awesome. #wineandboobs
Thanks, he is a gem, both my parents are. I hit the jackpot in the parents department!
Lol! You crack me up! I would be like you too!
Thanks Scarlett, I’ve always considered myself to be athletic, but around my Dad I feel like a slug. LOL
hahahaha! If you are having a hard time keeping up I imagine many of the rest of us would be back home having that coffee on the patio instead. Keep it up and you’ll be more than ready for your upcoming marathon–who needs a coach or a personal trainer when you have your dad?
Totally Kathy. This isn’t the first time a summer at my parents’ place has been like going to the Biggest Loser ranch. When I was 18 and came home from UVic with my freshman 30#, I walked down to the beach every day with Mom until the weight came off.
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