I subscribe to a feed from the NY Times about baby boomers, so I’ve been reading a lot about aging. Writing my notes for this post I listed many of things I liked about getting older and I realized that except for senior discounts, they weren’t exclusive to being older, just wiser. So I guess this isn’t just about getting older it’s about maturing in the fullest sense of the term.
I find I am more comfortable with who I am and that I am much less concerned with what others might think of me. Don’t get me wrong I still subscribe to the golden rule and social norms, I still strive to grow personally and professionally, but I don’t berate myself as much as I used to and I’m learning there is benefit in trying and not just succeeding. I also understand my priorities better now than I did 20 or 30 years ago and this helps immensely with making decisions.
I also know that staying healthy and fit have kept me feeling younger than my chronological age. Handling stress is also something that I do much better now. I’ve learned that stress is always present, it’s my reaction to the stress that has changed. I like to say that I am able to have a space between the action or stressor and my reaction to it.
In the last 18 months I have lost my brother and my father so I truly know that life is too short to hold onto grudges, anger and petty grievances. I am lucky that I had closure with both my brother and dad.
Lastly I realize that I treasure experiences much more than things.
Years ago when I still worked at Nike, I started going to an acupuncturist because of back pain, but I continued going because I found it helped put the space between action and reaction. If you have a health or pain issue or if you need some more space between a stressor and your reaction to it, give me a call and let acupuncture help you age gracefully.
How did those World Cup players play in the heat and humidity in Brazil? The German team ironically hired an American, Mark Verstegen, over 10 years ago to help train their team. The New York Times has a great article on their training protocals. Verstegen says that anyone can benefit from some of his methods. Pay attention to nutrition, your attitude, how you move and give your body time to recover. Sleep is key to getting good results so don't skimp on that. Do something physical first thing when you wake up, like a stretch, pushup or squat, to prime your body and mind for activity. Then when you work out push yourself a bit. You need to stress your body and mind for them to grow. Read to the end of the article and watch the short videos showing the team's warm-up exercise routine, you might pick up something that will work for you. Who knows I might even get on my foam roller!
With the start of school and school sports this NY Times article caught my eye. Gretchen Reynolds does a nice job in the article of explaining options for treatment. The ACL helps stabililze the knee and can get injured with hits on the side of the knee as often happens in football or with twisting of the lower leg as in an awkward fall - think skiiing. If it happens to your teen you will no doubt be inundated with advise. Take your time, ask lots of questions, remember every case is different and there are several treatment options.
For those with little time and a high tolerance for pain, doing a short but very intense circuit workout might be the most efficient way to get or stay in shape. I could do all the recommended exercises, but I'm not sure I could force myself to an intensity level of 8 out of 10. What about you?
I just finished reading a thought provoking article about doctors and how they treat and diagnose patients. The auther, a doctor herself, gave an example of four people with diabetes. They were all very different, yet as she pointed out, conventional medical taining would indicate that they would be basically be treated the same. Her argument is that one size doesn't fit all and at times you need a little creativity to find a good solution. The irony here is that acupuncturists are often criticized for not having standarized treatment protocols.
What's one to do - eat a diet low in all fats, one with "healthy" fats like fish oils or one with a mixture of saturated as well as unsaturated fats? The answer is that there is no right answer at this point. It could depend on genetics, so what's right for you isn't right for me and it could depend on what disease you are trying to fight. Newly analized old studies and more recent studies on diet and heart disease point to shortened life expectancy for men following low saturated fat diets. The long held belief that high cholestoral leads to heart disease is also being called into question. When in doubt I like to think of the Chinese dietary traditon of eating all things, but in moderation.
Have you ever run or walked backwards? Most of us have for very short bursts. However sometimes you'll see a runner doing a backwards workout, I've seen a few running that way in my neighborhood. Well who knew that they were on to something and not just crazy. They burn more caleries, improve balance and work the muscles differently than forward running. For more information on this check out the following New York Times article.