GreaterPatchogue is hitting the gyms and finding the toughest fitness buffs from our senior communities for a series called Silver Warriors.


It’s never too late to start hitting the gym.

Take 92-year-old retired general medicine doctor Joseph Harder; he didn’t start regularly working out until he was 90.

“I was about as lazy as you get,” said Dr. Harder, laughing over the idea of him doing calisthenics and weight training in the past.

Growing up in Lynbrook, the only things that kept the current Bellport resident active was playing ping pong or skiing down the slopes of Windham Mountain.

But in 2015, that all changed when Harder slipped getting into his son’s car, breaking a femur.

He started his rehab process, which led him to a training program at Finest Fitness in Patchogue.

“I like it here because of the atmosphere,” said Harder.

And now he is stronger than he’s been in years.

“I wanted to be on my feet again,” said Harder, “and now I forget my cane sometimes because I walk better.”

Every Monday and Thursday, you can catch Harder taking the bus to the gym on East Main Street in Patchogue for his 45 minute “stronger seniors” class. Harder, with about 10 other seniors, work out their entire bodies from bicep curls to squats.

“He has an amazing personality and is an inspiration to all of us and it is a privilege for me to be his trainer,” said the gym’s personal trainer and coach, Angela Mangels.

Finest Fitness trainer Angela Mangels with Dr. Joseph Harder. (credit: Nicholas Esposito)