PJCC MEMBER PROFILE: AUDREY GUERIN
I usually don’t ask people their age, especially if it is a woman. When I met Audrey Guerin I was surprised when her age came up; she is 81. She has such a youthful appearance. I told her I needed to know her secret–and we’re sharing it here with you!
Q: Audrey, I was surprised to learn your age after seeing your picture and then meeting you in person. What is the secret for how you stay so young?
A: Age just seems like a number and that number does not define me. I listen to my body to tell me what I can do. I eat healthy and exercise daily. Other than that, I have a wonderful family and keep a contented attitude.
Q: Can you tell us about your fitness history? Were you always interested in fitness?
A: I grew up in New York and was a professional ballet dancer performing with the NYC Ballet Company and on the TV variety shows (Sid Caesar’s Your Show of Shows, The Danny Thomas Show). Remember those? That was a long time ago. Since then I’ve kept a low keyed exercise program with some gym classes and incumbent bike riding at home.
Q: PIlates has become a big part of your routine. How long ago did you start doing Pilates?
A: I started Pilates about 2 years ago at the PJCC. I felt like I needed to supplement my daily routine with something more. I particularly loved the classes with Sarah and discovered that with a little work I could increase my core strength.
Q: What has it done for you physically and mentally?
A: When I was younger I had a goal of being able to do 10 sit ups by age 40, which I never did attain. Now in my 80s, I can do the Pilates 100 . My core and back are stronger. I feel more spacious and can even breathe more deeply.
Another benefit was the friendship that grew between Sarah and me. We quickly bonded over our mutual love for ballet.
Q: What other activities/hobbies are you involved with that contribute to your overall wellness (mental, creative, etc.)?
A: I do volunteer work for the Foster City Village, a non-profit dedicated to enabling seniors to age in place. I like to read, go to the ballet, theater, and oh yes, I love my daily naps.
Q: What advice would you give to the 40-year old you?
A: Keep moving. Do not worry about what you cannot do.
Audrey takes Pilates here at the PJCC with personal trainer Sarah Paltridge.
Sarah says, “Audrey and I connected initially over our mutual love of ballet. It blossomed over knitting, lovely lunches, and lively conversations. I love her example of giving back to others by helping seniors in the community and keeping vigorously healthy in mind, body, and spirit. Pilates can really help anyone achieve a better level of fitness because it improves core strength, stability, posture, balance, flexibility and helps prevent and treat back pain. It also helps you to center yourself, to know where you are in space and have more control over your body. It really helps you live a fuller life”.