Wednesday, April 29, 2009

I Wanna Look Like Grandma

Well, I am so sorry I am past due on getting this post up. My darn computer screen turned red on me and it's been awful looking at it and trying to do anything! Everything is tinted. So I got my son to come over tonight and take a look and he "googled" the problem. Sure enough, other people have experienced this and so now I can either try to get it fixed or get a new monitor. Sigh.... So I am ignoring the color and typing anyway.
But so - on to the topic today - ramping up your exercise program. I love moving. I'm addicted to it, although it doesn't run my life, I couldn't live without it. Make sense? And as I get older, the more I have to do! I figure that by the time I'm 75, I'll be working out 10 hours a day and eating lettuce just to stay ahead of the game. Only kidding...kind of. But we do have to work harder at staying in place and still harder if we want to gain as we get older.
I like gaining when I can. Staying in place is OK for awhile and better than losing. Right? But my goal is for my grandchildren to say "Gee, I hope I look like Grandma when I'm her age." Hopefully my brains will be intact also when they say that. : ) So gain is the goal.
But so how do we do this? First of all, we have to move consistently, every day for at least 30 minutes to start and a day off a week for good behavior. Do this for a couple of months to get used to the idea and begin making moving a habit. Of course, if you have any doubts, you've been sedentary for a long time or you are very overweight, always check with your doctor about what you're going to do. Second, move up to 60 minutes of doing something cardio-like 6 days a week. Might be walking 4 days, riding a horse 2 days. Good for a start. Do that for awhile - 6 weeks or so, then RAMP IT UP! Add something that is going to get your heart pumping, your lungs heaving in and out and your muscles tired, but not hurting. Walking faster, spinning, tennis, running, biking, rowing, using cardio equipment in the gym, lots to choose from depending on where you live. Move like you mean it! But do it at your own pace. You don't have to keep up with the pros, but push yourself.
I talk in my book about my experience not trying Jazzercise forever because I thought I would embarrass myself. Then I finally went and lo and behold, I could do my thing in the back of the class and no one would ever know I missed cues (like anyone cared!). I love Jazzercise and try to do it three days a week now. I also go to the gym at least twice a week, ride my bike, walk my dogs and ride my horse on the weekends. Mix it up. Don't let your body get comfortable because then it's getting efficient. It's such a wonderful mechanism it learns to become efficient to conserve energy/calories for you. So sweet. But if you are trying to lose weight that doesn't help - mix it up!
Bottom line - eat less calories than you burn if you need to lose weight and make sure those calories are full of nutrients, not garbage.
If you haven't started exercising consistently - get going. If you are, but you've been doing the same thing for a year, change it up and make it harder. Challenge yourself, but not so much you are going to be too sore to move the next day. Everything in balance. Keep focusing on the gain, maintain when you have to, but try not to lose ground you have worked so hard to achieve. (Read my "Workarounds are Our Friends" post). Enjoy, my friends. Stay healthy. Strong immune systems are important in fighting the flu. Exercise boosts immunity. It's all in the Plan.


  1. Oh Anne, this post struck a chord with me. First of all, prior to my diagnosis I was a VERY active woman! I loved being out of doors walking, climbing, hiking, name it. Then I was forced to slow down. Fine. The part that I really wanted to talk about was the Jazzercise! I have wanted to do it for SO long, but I am THE most uncoordinated person at those kinds of things! I have visions of my arms going one direction, my legs another, and my midsection in still another. Not a pretty sight! However, your courage gives me courage. I am going on record here - the minute my body is up to it, I am signing up for Jazzercise! In court, after I am sued for harming someone, I am calling you as a witness ;)

  2. Too funny! But I was also afraid that I was going to be totally off, flailing around, but actually it didn't take that long to learn the steps. The back of the room is where it's at when you start, then move up. People miss cues no matter how long they've been at it. So go for it!

  3. LOL you guys!! I love walking, do lots of it but have been thinking seriously about a bike. I always am impressed with what great shape you are in Anne - you are my excercise muse - hevy responsibility there - lol. Great post - I need to be inspired this time of year!! Hugs and love, your Sis