Updated July 2017
You might be asking yourself why, when I live in Mexico and am surrounded by all the places to see in this country, I have posted a video of my going to the gym.
One reason is that weight-training has changed my life. AARP sees it the way I do and in fact, has a booklet out that you should look at if you already don't incorporate weight-training into your fitness regimen.
Another reason is that I like to address people's irrational fears or misconceptions that may be preventing their exploration of a financially sound and adventurous idea.
Judging by conversations we have with people back home, my business partnr and I thought it might be helpful to show you how totally normal a day can be.
Sure, you will encounter some exotic choices at the grocery store and the concert crowds might look a little darker if you’re used to the ones in Idaho or Wisconsin, but in its essence, your day to-day life can have most of the pleasant things that you enjoy now, including delivery food, Netflix and gabbing with your girlfriends over lunch.
You don’t have to work for it or make expensive travel arrangements for adventure when you live in another country, the adventure is built right into to your day. Only recently I went to a department store to buy some make-up only to find a mariachi band playing in front of the Lancome counter. It's that easy.
My daily life here, just like in the U.S. often includes going to the gym. I have worked out since I was seventeen. What started as vanity then evolved into training for sports, then evolved into maybe staying alive a little longer. Exercise seems to be the prescription for so many things, I've lost count.
Nice gyms can be as expensive in Mexico as they are the U.S, probably more so to get the kind of quality you want. I imagine that they are rare in the smaller towns in Mexico and I struggled to find one here.
When I finally did, two of the best ones in town were right next door to one another.
Neither of them coddle their members either. The temperature on some days last summer was well over 90 degrees, probably over 100 degrees with the dew point. Work-outs can be a real test of character.
But women do weight-train here. In fact, I have never seen so many women weight-training in a gym as I have seen at mine, the Body Factory, up on the north end of town.
Maybe it's because unlike all the gyms I go to in the U.S, the trainers don't only hustle for clients. Their job is to train people, whether they are paying them or not. In over 30 years going to muscle-head gyms, I have never seen such imaginative use of equipment.
Gym rats like me try to find a gym the minute they hit a town. It can be extremely frustrating in Mexico because most gyms are really bad; dirty, broken and limited equipment and rooms that lack of heat or air conditioning. Don't forget to do your online search in Spanish "gimnasios" + town. Unless they have their site in English, good ones may not appear in your search.
And while working out may not be as common in Mexico as in the U.S., you do see people running along the beach. There are bicycle clubs and swim clubs in larger Mexican towns too. Again, don't forget to do the search for groups in Spanish. In expat areas like San Miguel de Allende or Lake Chapala, you have every type of physical activity facility you can think of.
If you go back and forth between countries or even if you just travel a lot, it makes sense to have some work-outs that require little or no equipment. I carry a jump rope and bands in my suitcase wherever I go Consult Ventanas Pinterest Board "Staying in Shape While Traveling," for my curation of exercises using mainly your own body weight.
"How to Design a Work-out According to Your Body Type" - by Body-building.com
"How to Create Your Own Full-Body Work-Out Plan" - by Nerd Fitness
Most recent: MeetUps .com are organized for every interest. Language practice MeetUps are great, free confidence-boosters if your a beginner Spanish speaker
Next up: Are you pursuing smaller, cheaper towns in the U.S to retire to? How I chose Mexico.
Hi, I am a partner with Ventanas Mexico and author of the "Interactive Guide to Learning Spanish Free Online," a curation of the best Spanish language tools on the web, linked and organized into lesson plans. See the reviews on Amazon.com!
We also offer "If Only I Had a Place" a renting guide for the aspiring expat, which includes a listing of rental concierges I know in most of the popular expat destinations.