SYSTEMATIC PHYSICAL TRAINING 505
Perhaps one of the most powerful factors in deterring the majority of women from taking up some form of regular exercise—of body-building physical culture—is the erroneous idea that it would require sacrifices of time impossible for many to make because of their occupations, and entail hardships in the way of long and exhausting training and adherence to dietetic rules entirely foreign to what have been the habits of the individual.
This idea should be banished at once. Sensible, health-giving physical culture means none of these things. It merely means a hygienic method of life and sufficient attention paid to the muscular organization in the way of carefully selected, systematic exercise, to insure keeping the tissues in a wholesome state, and supplying them with a proper amount of blood.
The women who have learned this are far in advance of their sisters, not only in the matter of health, but in their ability to retain their good looks and youthful appearance.
Not so very long ago women had to "settle down" as patiently as they could to the belief that they were doomed to wear the signs of premature old age. Their lives were generally all after one pattern. Whether they married or remained single they began to grow fat at thirty; at forty they were stout; at fifty they were burdensome to themselves, and long before sixty they were hopelessly old. Those women who have learned the benefits of keeping the muscular part of their being in a condition of vigorous activity have proved how senseless such a programme is.
A woman who takes anything like proper care of her body is still girlish at thirty; at forty her charm is little impaired, and at fifty she is magnetic, attractive, and as keenly imbued with the delights of living as when she emerged from her teens.
If one could present a list of grandmothers of the present time who are still beautiful, attractive, and sought-after women, it would astonish the community.
These women are not different from the grandmothers who preceded them in any inherited powers; they have merely followed such a course of life as extends their period of vigor