Girl who shies away from gym can en­joy a good, long walk

The Progress-Index - - AMUSEMENTS - JEANNE PHILLIPS —Dear Abby is writ­ten by Abi­gail Van Buren, also known as Jeanne Phillips, and was founded by her mother, Pauline Phillips. Con­tact Dear Abby at or P.O. Box 69440, Los An­ge­les, CA 90069.

DEAR ABBY: My mom wants me to ex­er­cise more. Cur­rently, I just walk a lot (in my house and around the block). I know ex­er­cise is a good idea, but I’m re­ally self-con­scious about it. I never feel like I’m do­ing it right (be­cause I know you can eas­ily pull a mus­cle), and I feel like ev­ery­one else in the gym is judg­ing me.

Now that I’m 17, Mom ex­pects me to be more ma­ture about this. I don’t even feel com­fort­able swim­ming in pub­lic places any­more. I feel stressed about it, but Mom just thinks I’m be­ing picky.

Be­ing in a gym makes me feel un­happy and judged. I wish there was a bet­ter way to ex­er­cise, but I don’t know what. How can I get my mom to un­der­stand how hard this is for me? - - WON­DER­ING IN WICHITA DEAR WON­DER­ING: Go­ing to a gym can be fun if you do it with a buddy. Most of the peo­ple there are more con­cerned with what THEY are do­ing than what any­one else is. That said, go­ing to the gym isn’t for ev­ery­one. There are many forms of ex­er­cise.

Tell your mother you would pre­fer to ex­er­cise on your own rather than go to a gym. Then put on your walk­ing shoes, leave the house and walk for 20 to 30 min­utes a day. It’s good for you. Lis­ten to mu­sic when you’re do­ing it and it will make the time go quickly. And on days when you don’t want to go out­side, put on some mu­sic and dance. It’s good for the cir­cu­la­tion, and it’s also good for the soul.

DEAR ABBY: My hus­band and I have been mar­ried for 44 years. We eloped in high school and still feel like new­ly­weds. We built a suc­cess­ful busi­ness, ran it for 40 years and re­cently had an op­por­tu­nity to sell it.

The prob­lem is my mother. We bought a sec­ond home in Cal­i­for­nia, but kept our first home. Ev­ery time I call to ask how she and Dad are do­ing, she re­sponds with, ‘’You don’t care how we are. If you did, you would be here.’’

I love our new life. Our kids are grown, and we are en­joy­ing our­selves to the fullest. We are both in ex­cel­lent health, and still young at heart. How can we tell her that we have a life we love with­out her be­ing so re­sent­ful? - - LOV­ING LIFE IN CAL­I­FOR­NIA

DEAR LOV­ING: You can’t, be­cause your mother feels you should be at her beck and call. She has had you close since you were a child, and now she may be feel­ing de­serted.

At this point, I don’t ad­vise telling your mother that you ‘’have a life you love’’ with­out her. In­stead, I sug­gest that you phrase your greet­ing to her more care­fully.

Rather than ask how she and your dad are do­ing, say that you are ‘’call­ing to check in.’’ Say that you were think­ing about her. And if she starts in with ‘’you don’t care,’’ tell her that you DO care or you wouldn’t be on the phone with her, but if she keeps giv­ing you a guilt trip, she’ll be hear­ing from you less.

DEAR ABBY: If you go to a party and bring some­thing (chips, soda, etc.), what is the rule of eti­quette about tak­ing it home when you leave? — PRAC­TI­CAL IN IDAHO DEAR PRAC­TI­CAL: When some­one brings food to a party, it could be con­sid­ered a host/ host­ess gift. Be­fore tak­ing any of it home, first ask your host or host­ess if it would be all right. While some peo­ple wouldn’t mind, oth­ers may, so you shouldn’t as­sume that be­cause you brought some­thing that the left­overs are yours.

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