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Dance [publisher's letter]

Publisher Tracy Patterson with her dog sitting in the desert resting up from a hike

Tracy Patterson

This month’s Fit Body article, reminded me of how I used to love dancing. It was a favorite hobby of mine, and I racked up many a mile on dance floors big and small over the years!

When I was a young adult, they still had cabarets in some of the hotel ballrooms, and we would make good use of those wonderful rooms with the fancy chandeliers and spacious dance floors. Other nights, we would just dance to a great band at the neighborhood bar or in a tiny living room at someone’s house party. Of course, there were also the dance halls.

I can tell you one thing, my fun pastime sure did the trick for keeping me in shape—there wasn’t an ounce of fat on me. I remember bringing a friend to one of my favorite dance halls that featured country and western music. She had never danced to this genre before, and she likened it to a strenuous cardio workout. According to the article, 600 calories can be burned in one hour of dancing, so with an average of four to five solid hours of moving and grooving in an evening, it’s no wonder I was a lean machine!

Socializing was also a big part of the dancing scene, and something my friends and I could partake in together. We did this on a regular basis and certainly on big celebratory occasions, like New Year’s Eve, which was a particular favorite of ours. I don’t recall us ever ringing in the new year without dance being a part of the festivities. We would also make a point of mixing things up—one year, rock; another year, country; another, reggae; and so on. We loved to “cut a rug” to all types of music.

One of the great things about dancing was that I was getting plenty of exercise, but it never felt forced; in fact, it never seemed like exercise at all. It was something I loved doing, and it was effortless.

As the years rolled on, the nightlife that once seemed so vital, no longer held the same interest, which in turn, pretty much ended my dance life. However, as the article points out, there are venues such as gyms that offer fun dance classes. So, I think it’s time to give some thought to resurrecting my old dance hobby.