Disease Proof

Plane Exercisers...

I hate to fly! The only exercise I get on a plane is an exercise in panic and fear, but not this guy. Dr. Charles van der Horst turns a plane into his own personal gym. The New York Times tells his story:
To this day, every place I go I find the time to exercise. It’s a wonderful way to see the country and to get that endorphin rush that makes a bad day a little more tolerable. For me, running through dusty fields of Malawi and hearing the Islamic call to prayer is mesmerizing. And I can’t help but smile, when I’m running through a village and these gorgeous little African children start running with me yelling, “azungu,” which can mean stranger, foreigner or white guy — all of which are true.

My colleagues and friends still have a tough time believing I spend a short layover in London doing laps in a pool. Or that I walk through German customs wearing my ratty running shorts. My daughters tell me I should get rid of them. Despite their embarrassment, I won’t. The shorts are too comfortable.

The ultimate eyebrow raiser is on the South African Airways flight back from Johannesburg to the United States. This endless trip is enough to drive anyone crazy. My solution is to go into the restroom halfway through the flight and change into workout clothes. I then do a full hour of calisthenics, crunches, push-ups and lunges in the aisle of the plane. I’ll ask the stewards for a lot of those steamy washcloths, and then retreat to the restroom for a sponge bath. I’ll sleep like a baby for the rest of the flight.
Okay, I’m an exercise nut—yoga, running, weights—but like I said, on a plane, I’m like a cat in water—EEK! Now, get this. Dr. Fuhrman is also a plane exerciser. Get a load of this:
Hey, I do stuff like that too on the planes. Stretching, lunges, one-legged knee bends, toe raises. Except I don’t sponge bath after. It often is a surprise that I am the only one exercising in the back of the plane. I usually get to know the stewardesses in the back galley, while I am exercising and stretching and wind up talking to them about their diets and sometimes I’ll meet someone who will pull out their bag of veggies and fruits to show me they do not eat the junk plane food.
I’d call him crazy, but I’d be risking my job—oh, wait. Oops!
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