Centenarian Loves to Keep Active at Myerberg Center

Photos by Nicole Barr

At 100 years and counting, Florence “Flossie” Snyder makes it a priority to maintain her health through regular exercise at the Edward A. Myerberg Center.

“I’ve been going to exercise there for maybe 15 years,” Snyder said.

Her typical schedule, before the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, saw her powering through two-hour-long workout sessions three days a week.

Snyder made use of a wide variety of the center’s exercise equipment, including the stepper and the rowing machine. She admitted that she does not use the treadmill, though, on account of a bad ankle and knee.

“I take 20 minutes on each exercise,” Snyder said. “I jump and run, and do all these things to keep myself young and healthy. If you want to stay young and healthy, join a gym.”

“Her typical morning workout is she will start with some stretches by the wall,” said Markese Hayden, the Myerberg Center’s fitness and wellness director. “Then she will do her cardio exercises on a stepping machine. Then she will do weight training. Then she will do core exercises using a stability ball.”

Ross Wilson, a personal trainer at Myerberg, added she also makes use of the rowing machine, the functional trainer, and a cardio routine that simulates rope jumping.

By Hayden’s account, Snyder has been excelling, and it is not only her own health that receives a boost from her workout regimen.

“You’ll hear a lot of times members of the gym saying that Flossie is their inspiration,” Hayden said. “People are really impressed because she moves around really well. People ask what is her secret, and she tells them that she exercises every day of her life and maintains a healthy lifestyle.”

Wilson agreed with Snyder’s popularity. “The entire time she’s moving through that exercise regimen, she socializes with everyone in the gym … in an endless banter,” he said.

“People often interrupt her workout because they’re eager to talk to her.”

This was particularly evident during Snyder’s 100th birthday celebration at Myerberg’s banquet hall. “It was packed to capacity with Flossie’s friends and family, and she enjoyed it thoroughly,” Wilson said.

It isn’t just Snyder’s physical health that the center is preserving, though, as she credits Myerberg with maintaining her mental health as well.

“It’s keeping my mind healthy,” Snyder said. “Sometimes, because of being over 100, you stumble over certain words, losing the language as you age. But I’m very happy when I’m there.”

Hayden expressed that he finds Snyder’s visits to the center a joy, and that she “is a pretty fun and loving person. She loves to have a good time and laugh with people,” adding that she “cracks a lot of jokes.”

And, apparently, she continues to have fun even after the sessions. “Every Friday, she and her daughter go out to a bar and enjoy a bourbon,” Hayden said. “She just enjoys life very much.”

It goes without saying, of course, that the ongoing pandemic has precluded Snyder’s normal workout routine. She has not been to the center in over six weeks, she said, and acknowledged that being stuck in her house has been making her “a little stir-crazy.”

“Thank God I never got the coronavirus,” Snyder said. “I’m very bored being home, and can’t wait to get back [to the Myerberg Center].

“At Myerberg, they have wonderful teachers, and I love going there,” Snyder continued.

“Myerberg has great instructors, the people are kind, and it keeps you healthy and your mind active.”

To say that Snyder encourages others to follow her lead would be putting it mildly.
“People who don’t exercise enough are pretty stupid,” she said. “It does so much for your mental condition. You walk out happy.

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