Wake up and work out

July 14, 2000

Wake up and work out

By MEG H. PARTINGTON / Staff Writer

photo: RICHARD T. MEAGHER / staff photographer

Brenda BinkleyCompared to waking up, Sandy Kinzer's morning workout seems easy.

"The hardest part is getting your eyes open," said Kinzer, 58, of Greencastle, Pa. "If I didn't come in the morning, I wouldn't come."


Three or four days a week, Kinzer, who works part time as a bookkeeper, gets to Sports Inn, part of Comfort Inn in Greencastle, Pa., between 7:30 and 8 a.m. She walks 2 miles around the track, rides 8 1/2 miles on a stationary bike, then lifts some weights.

Hagerstown YMCALenny Panicola, 50, of Hagerstown, works out at Hagerstown YMCA three days a week after his work day at First Data Merchant Services ends at 6:30 a.m.


"I push myself," said Panicola, who said that once he's at the gym, he doesn't have trouble getting motivated.

For workout partners Bill Vance, Chad Lord and Wayne "Pancake" Smith, working out at 5 a.m. during the week allows them to spend time with their wives and children in the evening.

"When I get off work, I can be with family," said Lord, 29, of Hedgesville, W.Va.

Try these tips

HEIGHT="6" ALT="* "> Pardon the overused Nike slogan, but just do it. Getting up is the hardest part - once you're up, get moving.

HEIGHT="6" ALT="* "> Find someone to work out with. It's easier to motivate yourself to get up when you know someone else is expecting you.

HEIGHT="6" ALT="* "> Don't eat a heavy breakfast before working out. Opt for light cereal, toast or yogurt.

HEIGHT="6" ALT="* "> If you're not active now, see a doctor before trying a fitness program.

HEIGHT="6" ALT="* "> Vary your workouts to prevent boredom.

HEIGHT="6" ALT="* "> Start out slowly. If you try too much too soon, you'll get sore and will want to quit.

HEIGHT="6" ALT="* "> Set goals for yourself and keep building on them.

- Sources: Early bird exercisers from the Tri-State area

Smith's job as a cable splicer for Bell Atlantic in Martinsburg, W.Va., sometimes requires him to work late, so by working out first thing, he doesn't have to worry about going to the gym after a long day.

Knowing that others are expecting him at the gym helps motivate Lord, also a cable splicer at Bell Atlantic.

"A partner makes a big difference," said Lord, who works out with Vance and Smith at Gold's Gym in Martinsburg four days a week.

Exercising early in the morning just makes you feel good, some say.

"I have to come in here and work out. I feel better," said Margot Whitt, 70, of State Line, Pa., whose workouts at Sports Inn start around 8 a.m.

Walking on the treadmill and doing laps around the club's indoor track five days a week helped her drop four dress sizes and lose 26 pounds in the last six years without dieting.

"I think you can lose more weight if you work out in the morning," said Donnie Strait, 34, of St. Thomas, Pa. "If I miss a work out in the morning, I feel fat."

Strait arrives at Sports Inn around 6 a.m. four to five days a week. On Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, he comes in again in the afternoon to run or play racquetball.


"Anyone that's in here at 5 o'clock is here for one thing," Lord says, and that's to exercise. The early exercisers don't come to the gym to chat or meet people, he says.

"You've got to be dedicated to do it," said Strait, who works for the Army in Greencastle and works part time at Sports Inn.

"In my mind, you have to be determined that you're going to change your lifestyle," said Archie van Norden, 46, of Hagerstown.

Van Norden, principal of Hickory Elementary School, works out around 6:30 a.m. during the summer months. In the winter, he opts for evenings.

"It's been something that's been important to me for a long time," van Norden said. "It gives me a sense of accomplishment when I can see myself going longer on this thing," he said while working out at Hagerstown YMCA.

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