Dubuque Retirement Community Boasts Big Numbers in Fitness Improvements

by Katie Wiedemann, Reporter

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By Katie Wiedemann

DUBUQUE, Iowa - "Live to Be Healthy" is a new exercise program at Sunset Park Place in Dubuque. The retirement community is boasting some big numbers when it comes to how much participants have improved.

Inside the strength training class, age is nothing but a number.

Sunset Park Place Resident Lila Klenske said, "I love it. It gets me up and going in the morning."

Numbers run ramped in this class. Three day per week.

"They have great energy. They have better flexiblity and range of motion, " said Shelly Gessner, Sunset's Life Enrichment Coordinator.

At 84 years old,Klenske is one of the young ones. Still she doesn't let that number define her.

"I guess I just enjoy it and evidently the improvement comes along with it," said Klenske.

When Klenske first started the class four months, she could only do 27 of these chest presses, using 3 pounds resistance.Today, she's using 5 pounds resistance, maxing out at 42 reps.That's a 688 percent increase.

"I had trouble losing my balance every once in awhile and I just don't have that problem anymore, " Klenske.

But Klenske says what the numbers don't show is the changes in her emotional and mental health. Spending this time with her new friends has her feeling young again.

Directors say that's something everyone in this class deserves.

"They've led so many paths for us to follow and we owe them that respect, " said Gessner.

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