>Five hours a week

>I devote five hours a week to fitness. That includes four hours of actual workout and one hour of getting to and from two 90-minute yoga-based classes and one 60-minute belly dance class that involves a 10-lb. weight belt.

The reason I do this is because if I do any less, it doesn’t work. What I mean by “it doesn’t work” is that fat doesn’t burn any more. And, to some extent, the workout is a struggle rather than enjoyable — I guess because at once or twice a week I can’t maintain the levels of strength, balance and flexibility that make working out physically enjoyable.

Five hours, in three 90-minute chunks, is a LOT of time. It means that two times a week, dinner with Zorg is disrupted. And that I can’t attend professional meetings on the evenings when my classes meet. And that I don’t like to go away for the weekend because that means missing the Sunday morning class. And that when we have guests, I go slithering off to class instead of being a good hostess and cooking for them.

Perhaps there are people for whom fitness is something they can just “fit in” in the openings in their schedules. But I find there are few such openings in mine, and certainly not enough of them to keep me fit. Fitness has to be planned and scheduled, and lots of fun or important activities sacrificed — and other people inconvenienced — in order to get results.

And, oh yes, it’s totally worth it.

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