88 Year Old Fitness Instructor Wants to Know: What’s Your Excuse?

The saying, “your health is your wealth,” is possibly be the best way to sum up this Wisconsin-based fitness instructor’s career. To the unknowing eye, Delores Steil is quite the opposite of what you’d expect from your typical fitness instructor.

Why’s Steil so different? She’s 88 years old and has been teaching fitness classes at the same YMCA for the last 27-years. Fox 12 Oregon recently did a news story on Steil and her fitness instructing career, which is covered in the video below.

Possibly the best part of the video is Steil’s thoughts on what others think about her. When asked if she sees herself as an inspiration like many of her peers do, she simply responds by saying, “I don’t feel special, but my daughters do, they think I’m great.”

If that doesn’t prove Steil is in the fitness industry for the right reason, then I don’t know what will. Here we have a woman receiving national news coverage and she shrugs off any attempt to point herself out as an inspiration to many people and stays humble. To top it off, Fox 12 Oregon state that she’s only missed one class in the last 10 years. Keep in mind, she teaches classes three-times a week.

If you Google “Delores Steil,” chances are the only thing you’ll find on her is this recent news story. This scenario reminds me of the article we wrote in November on Mark Bell’s “Why I Will Never Stop Lifting,” video.

In this day and age it’s easy to get caught up in the flash and glamour of the fitness industry. With things like YouTube, Instagram, and influencer marketing, the fitness industry is becoming much more saturated with those who do fitness simply because they can.

It’s increasingly harder to find those who do it for the pure love and enjoyment. Steil might be the definition of the pure love and enjoyment fitness can entail when you’re improving yourself and others around you.

Feature image screenshot from Fox 12 Oregon news report. 

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Jake holds a Master's in Sports Science and a Bachelor's in Exercise Science. Currently, Jake serves as one of the full time writers and editors at BarBend. He's a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) and has spoken at state conferences on the topics of writing in the fitness industry and building a brand. As of right now, Jake has published over 1,100 articles related to strength athletes and sports. Articles about powerlifting concepts, advanced strength & conditioning methods, and topics that sit atop a strong science foundation are Jake's bread-and-butter. On top of his personal writing, Jake edits and plans content for 15 writers and strength coaches who come from every strength sport.Prior to BarBend, Jake worked for two years as a strength and conditioning coach for hockey and lacrosse players, and was a writer at the Vitamin Shoppe's corporate office. Jake regularly competes in powerlifting in the 181 lb weight class, and considers himself a weightlifting shoe sneaker head. On the side of writing full time, Jake works as a part-time strength coach and works with clients through his personal business Concrete Athletics in Hoboken and New York City.