I am not an athlete. And at age 72, I’m perhaps not the typical client who would seek out a professional stretching clinic. In fact, stretching clinics are relatively new to New Hampshire, and when I tell people how stretch therapy has enhanced my life, many look at me with genuine curiosity.
As the CEO of a busy nonprofit, my work life happens primarily at a desk. For hours on end I’m either on the phone, or sitting in front of a computer. In my “other life,” I’m also an author of several motivational books, including an Amazon bestseller “Begin with Yes,” which has garnered well over two million followers on Facebook. My newest book, “Be Amazing,” was recently distributed by Simon and Schuster, and I’m currently at work on my next book about growing older with optimism and grace. With so many balls in the air, both personally and professionally, and an increasingly sedentary lifestyle brought on from working remotely during this pandemic, I’ve discovered that I’ve struggled even more with typical signs of aging and lack of flexibility.
After some research about the benefits of stretch therapy, I searched online for a stretching clinic near me in the Seacoast and found Rezilient. I booked my very first appointment with a stretch professional named Hunter, and eagerly awaited my first visit. Afterward, the one word that kept coming to mind when I described my first treatment is “remarkable.” My body was moved and gently molded in ways that seemed incredibly natural – almost primal – as if my body was slowly realizing how it was meant to move, but hadn’t done so in years.
As I talked with friends who were familiar with stretch therapy, I soon got the sense that I wasn’t alone. I also learned that even people who live more physically-ambitious or athletic lives were only moving their bodies in ways that supported their current activities. Like me, they had forgotten how flexible and malleable our bodies were designed to be, yet how tightly-wound and stressed they had become.
While my first stretching treatment wasn’t painful, it certainly did awaken some muscles that had been dormant for many years, and truthfully, some weren’t quite ready to wake up. I actually started going more frequently and after a few weeks of working with Hunter, I truly felt that my body was starting to come alive again. It was almost as if it was slowly awakening from a deep slumber that had lasted for years. And so, I continued on.
As my body continued to reconnect to itself, muscle to muscle, limb to limb, I actually felt my activity level improve. I stood up straighter, began to move more, improved my eating habits, and, my personal favorite, began walking more on the beach with my partner and our amazing Goldendoodle, Toby.
Today, I am still not an athlete. And the last time I checked, I am still 72-years-old. I have a few pounds I’d like to lose, I’m just as busy as before, and I’m still sitting more than I should, but I have added stretching to my life and it sure feels good.