Feeling Fit Club bringing healthy alternatives for the 55 + crowd

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As people take one more bite of spinach-artichoke dip at parties and festivities, they might be asking if all the extra calories were worth it during this holiday season. What’s more, if they are over 55 years, taking pounds off can be even more of a challenge. 

As people take one more bite of spinach-artichoke dip at parties and festivities, they might be asking if all the extra calories were worth it during this holiday season. What’s more, if they are over 55 years, taking pounds off can be even more of a challenge. 

People can breathe easy after taking that last piece of pecan pie. There will be a brand-new exercise class tailored for them. The Feeling Fit Club is a free class for the 55- and-over bunch, a free class sponsored by the County’s Aging and Independence Services. The class receives funding from the LiveWell San Diego Initiative.  

Classes will be available at the Lemon Grove, Rancho San Diego and Santee libraries.

The comprehensive program will give you a chance to strengthen major muscle groups and meet new friends. The Feeling Fit Club will have you doing exercises that improve posture and gait as well as strength. Participants will progress from lighter to heavier weights, and all of the moves can be performed from a seated position, though participants are encouraged to stand for most of the class.

Denise Neleson, Communications Manager for AIS, said that the goals of the clubs are to offer a safe, comfortable environment for older adults to engage in physical activity as well as help them develop and maintain their level of physical fitness.

Exercising together can be fun, too, a chance to interact with others and build up self-esteem. The class is called a club in part because sometimes the idea of a class can scare people away. That idea comes from Vicki Velasco, the creator of the club. She started the club in 1999 when she was a manager at Aging and Independence Services. When she retired in 2003, she kept going strong, teaching classes at four different sites.

Velasco herself has lung disease, but the exercises have allowed her to build the muscles around her lungs and help her breathing, according to a post on the San Diego County News website.

Neleson said the overall goal of the Fit Club is to help people improve their ability to main independence and activities of daily living. Several other benefits of the exercise include but are not limited to better balance, increased strength, and more resistance to chronic illness.

According to Velasco, the Feeling Fit Club is an excellent place for people of all levels of health and congregates.

Making exercise a part of one’s lifestyle in 2015 will be made easier, then, through Feeling Fit Club. For more information, go to www.sandiegocounty.gov/hhsa/programs/ais/health_promotions/feeling_fit_club or call 858-495-5998.

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