So let's be clear. There's no "making time" for fitness in Amsterdam. Don't get me wrong. There are gyms and fitness classes but fitness is a matter of course.
There are more bikes than citizens in this City. The infrastructure makes "way" for cyclists. Bikes are not your Mommas Schwinn or your sons ultralight Bianca ..,
Everyone Bicycles here...bikes are retrofitted to meet a persons needs. Yesterday I saw a mother bicycling with this box in front of her (photo to illustrate) and two boys side by side sound a sleep with their heads knocking together with each cobblestone she hit. She was on her cell. It's a no helmet City.
Then there was the guy with 3 children attached. One on a seat similar to American bikes, one on a handle bar seat and a sweet new child slung like a bag around his belly. The child in front (age 4) was telling an animated story and the father was reminding him that they were on a bike and to calm down. Did I say it's a no helmet country?"
Unfortunately, an industrious biker had some trouble. She got caught in one of the frequent downpours... Don't ever forget your umbrella in Amsterdam. She had 3 Clear garbage bags full of washed, dried and folded laundry. Thes bags piled atop her bike in an awkward fashion...the rain came... I saw the water dripping into the clear bags...
I saw bikes with windshields and a golf umbrellas.
Biking is the #1 method of travel.
I saw a biker texting and another reading.
Today there were bikers on cell phones,smoking pot, smoking tobacco. There were bicyclists with groceries, dump run Items and pets in baskets. (Cue Totos bicycle theme song from the Wizard of Oz.
So if the bikes don't get you fit... The stairs will!
The homes are tall and skinny. The reason dates back to the begining of taxation. Homes were taxed on size of lot so you'd by small lot and build up and up.
So if you are in a first floor walk up you are doing several step classes a day.
Cycling is for your lungs and steep steps for your legs! Ya baby!
People in Amsterdam are fit as a matter of course! Get on your bike and take the stairs! Get FIT PEOPLE!