Closing Out The 2021 Season

It was exactly 2 years ago yesterday that I had my ‘Widowmaker’ heart attack, playing tennis at my home club (above). I played there yesterday and am very appreciative of the full recovery I have been able to make.

It was the 42nd match of the year for me. I play with a couple friends and two of my brothers. my total matches for the year are down a little bit – as is my win percentage (below).

I have my last two 2021 matches coming up this week and if I win them both, I can get my win % up to 57%. We’ll see.

I never would have guessed I’d be playing 40-50x matches in a year a few years ago. I wasn’t really playing any tennis before I early retired. It wasn’t even in my pre-retirement ’Not Bored List’. It’s really been a wonderful (and largely unexpected) activity.

For me, it’s the perfect mix of competitive, social, and healthy activity. I also go on regular hikes, play league softball, and daily walks – but tennis is my favorite activity.

That’s the wonderful thing about early retirement, you’ll find yourself devoting significant amounts of time to enjoyable activities you didn’t even plan on.

Having so much ‘free time’ allows you to do things you haven’t really done since you were a kid. I used to play recreational tennis growing up and in college – but stopped playing for almost 30 years. Now I play more than anyone I know.

What activities from your past have you rediscovered/hope to get back into in retirement?

Image Credit: (c)

17 thoughts on “Closing Out The 2021 Season

  1. Cool you play tennis too! I’ve played at least 2X a week in 2021. Finally played USTA league again and went 3-2 in 9.5, as the aging 5.0.

    I also played softball every Saturday! Funny we do the same things.

    Do you have a tennis rating?


    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’ve never been rated for USTA, but I’m just a recreational player. Probably a 3.5-4.0. Our club has a big USTA program, but I’ve been too busy to get involved regularly. I also do League Curling in the softball off-season. I’m guessing you don’t have much of that in San Francisco! 😉


  2. Reading. I finally had the time to tackle the 11 volume series of The History of Civilization by Will and Ariel Durant. Each volume is 600 to 1,000 pages of in depth study if history.

    I tend to think that I know a lot about history, but take me back prior to 1750 especially outside North America and I am very ignorant. I am now on volume 7 with Queen Elizabeth…..the first one.

    I call this project my non-degree graduate study. I plan to read it again when finished in order to absorb more detail.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow – that does sound like a grad-level course. I love connecting history reads to trips we are taking, but the CV19 has kept us in the US for too long. Maybe 2022!?


  3. For me it’s definitely been running and lifting weights. My first home improvement project after retiring was to build out a full weight room/gym in our house. Exercise has certainly been a great focus for me for the past five years of retirement. Great job on your tennis front! That’s a lot of matches! I’m glad you were able to overcome the widow-maker. That had to be a huge scare to say the least. Cheers to a Happy New Year!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy New Year, Thom! A home gym is a great investment. We have the room for it, but our exercise equipment is a bit scattered in our lower level. Our treadmill gets a good amount of usage, but weights & cardio stuff isn’t used enough. Maybe 2022?!


  4. I would be happy to get back to where we were in 2019. I used to go to the gym four times a week on average. I did build out a home gym in my garage and am simply amazed how quickly you can get through a workout when you don’t have to wait for a piece of equipment where the current occupant is sending a couple dozen texts between sets.

    You are lucky that you picked up a sport that you can still play in your 50s. For me it will not be going back, it will be going forward new activities where I will be starting out as beginner.

    The Covid restrictions in CA chased 1% of our population out of the state to places like TX and FL. I would be interested in your comparison about how open everything is in Florida versus Minnesota?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. A home gym is a great investment. I just responded to Thom’s comment on the state of our fitness equipment.

      My wife goes to the gym for fitness classes 4-5x a week. It’s really her thing and social group.

      Gyms & my tennis club are pretty much wide open in MN now. We are much more like FL than CA at this point. That wasn’t the case in 2020, when we were as strict as anyone. Why the change? None of our neighboring states had lockdowns or mask mandates and no significant differences in CV19 impact. I live <5 miles from the WI border and Minnesotans were over there in droves enjoying their freedom.

      Additionally, our Governor is up for re-election and his early response to CV19 (and Geo Floyd riots) were very negative.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Sounds like Minnesota is learning from their neighbors. South Dakota received a lot of negative coverage in the beginning, but the narrative changed when their outcome was as good or better than restrictive states. My friends in small town Wisconsin sent me photos of people ignoring Gov. Evers.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. From the news reports I have been reading and watching, the Omicron variant is going to push everyone towards herd immunity. More infectious, but weaker is a normal path for a successful parasite. If a parasite is too deadly is does not get a chance to spread.

    One of my family got sick and tested positive the day before Christmas. Everyone in the household had already had Covid. My son, who tested positive was much less sick the second time.

    The other three of us felt like we were coming down with a cold, that went away as fast as it came. I had sinus congestion with a slight headache on the first day and only a slight ear ache the second day, and then nothing by the third day. Same with my wife and other son. That is your immune system doing its job of fighting off a bug.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yep. Hopefully it has mutated to something not much worse than the common cold for most people. Still have to be worried about the elderly & immune compromised, but that’s not restrictions for everyone.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. The people who are at risk, or at risk from the common cold or flu. I read two articles when this first started.

        The first was about the quarantine of the Crystal Princess Cruise Ship. A little over three thousand on board. Slightly over a quarter got Covid. Seven persons died, for a lethality rate of less than 1%. The average age on board was 75 years old, with mostly elderly Japanese, which has a high percentage of male smokers.

        The second article described the bad math that went into calculating the fatality rate. The initial fatality rate was calculated at around 7% of CONFIRMED CASES. For those who seek treatment for the flu the fatality rate is around 10%. The article then went on to describe that the fatality rate for the flu is calculated by estimating the percentage of the population who got the flu to come up with an overall number that gets divided into the confirmed deaths. This is where the 7ths of percent comes from.

        I ask people if they have ever had the flu and most answer yes. I then ask them if they have ever sought treatment for the flu and they answer no.

        This is a combination of biological terrorism (sending people traveling around the world for Chinese New Year) and propaganda. The USA had the world’s leading economy and was applying real pressure on China to stop their predatory trading practices before this outbreak.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Agree. The ‘experts’ sure are bad at basic math, aren’t they? None of them seem to understand the differences in their numerators & denominators!

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Most of my lawyer friends went to law school because they were weak in math. Note that a large percentage of congress are lawyers…..nuff said

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I agree with you 100%. They lack the basic math skills required to balance a budget and certainly should not be steering our nation’s energy policy.

    Liked by 1 person

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