Sixty and Me is an online magazine about life after 60. Topics range from makeup for older women and senior dating to retirement advice and senior travel. Helping boomer women to live healthy, independent and financially secure lives.
Are There Any Jobs for Older People? 4 Tips for Finding a Job After 60 - YouTube
There are many reasons that we might be looking for work in our 60s of better. Some of us have lost our jobs but just aren’t ready to retire yet. We like the social aspect of going to the office and the sense of achievement that our work provides. Others simply need the money to survive. But, regardless of the reasons, finding work after 60 can be tough! So, today, I would like to offer a few suggestions on how to find a new job in your 60s or better. I hope that you find them useful! Come join us for a cup of tea (or coffee) and a chat. And, if you enjoy the show, please tell one friend about us today. Your support means so much to me!
Do you plan on working in your 60s, 70s or beyond? Has the type of work that you want to do changed as you have gotten a little bit older? What advice would you offer to the women in our community who are looking for work? Let’s have a chat! Please join the conversation and tell one other woman about Sixty and Me today. The more the merrier!
We love meatloaf a lot, especially the next day leftovers. I try to incorporate lots of healthy veggies to create one of those super power healthy dinners.
A huge bonus for making this yummy meatloaf is that we enjoy it for two nights. In fact, I think that it tastes better on the second day. This recipe is very forgiving in that you can add almost any veggies you have in your fridge.
Today, with so many different types of diets that people follow, it is wise to be flexible with some recipes. This recipe is also forgiving with the amounts of spices you add.
I try to incorporate turmeric and oregano to our food as much as possible for their special therapeutic health values. Turmeric is good for the brain, joints and heart, and oregano acts as an antibiotic in our system.
I personally cook with a glass baking dish as I am working at using healthier type of cooking pans such as stainless steel, ceramic and glass.
Special Meatloaf Deluxe
1.5 pounds of ground beef, grass-fed if possible
1/2 cup of quinoa
1 cup of chopped spinach
2 tablespoons of olive oil or avocado oil
2 tablespoons each of oregano, basil, tarragon, garlic powder and turmeric
6 green onions chopped in about 3”-size pieces
3 Roma tomatoes (one sliced for the top of the meatloaf)
1 cup of sliced red cabbage (this is optional as I had a cup or so of this cabbage left in the fridge)
Salt and pepper to your taste.
Preheat the oven to 350.
Add ground beef to a large bowl along with egg and quinoa.
Blend these ingredients together until well mixed.
Add one cup of chopped spinach and blend well.
Add all the spices and the oil to the meat mixture.
Form an oblong loaf with the meat and set in the glass baking pan.
Add the sliced green onions around the outside of the meatloaf.
Add the carrots and 2 chopped tomatoes, encircling the meatloaf.
Fit the sliced red cabbage around the outside of the meatloaf.
Add extra oregano, basil and garlic powder to cover the veggies.
Add the sliced tomato over the top of the meatloaf.
Drizzle some olive oil over the veggies along with salt and pepper.
Cook the meatloaf uncovered.
Bake for about 1.5 hours until the meat is fully cooked.
*You can substitute ground chicken, pork or turkey or mix any of them together.
*This is a great low calorie dinner with lots of nutritious veggies and spices. You can serve this meatloaf with sliced cucumbers or tossed green salad.
*The photos were taken before placing in the oven.
Do you have a favorite meat loaf recipe? Are there any secret ingredients that you would like to share? Please do so in the comments section!
Carol Stanley has many interests in life including writing, painting, reading, cooking and biking. She also admits a secret love of poker. Carol has been involved in writing about her passion for staying healthy and has her very own website. Her book, Feel Better Every Day, is available for purchase.
Are you imperfect? Good. That means you are human.
But are you coming to terms with being imperfect? Ah, there lies the challenge.
Culture and society lauds the perfect marriage, perfect children, perfect body, perfect house. It’s nauseating! I have never been and will never be perfect, though there was a time when I tried to be.
My Perfection Journey
I wanted to be the perfect mom. My kids would be well-behaved, highly educated, saints and scholars. My house would be warm and inviting. My marriage would be enviable.
But the truth is, trying to be perfect nearly killed me. It negatively impacted those around me as well.
I am learning to embrace my imperfections, forgive myself for my mistakes and make peace with the tragedies that have befallen my life. It’s still a wonderful life no matter how much crap happens.
The Illusion of Imperfection
Perfection is really an illusion. Many Mamas I know made “the perfect family” an idol.
But when you can embrace your imperfections, you become positively empowered by the mistakes that you make. Here are some ideas that will allow you to embrace your humanity.
Look for the Hidden Gift of Imperfection
Do you feel like imperfections are weaknesses? If you do, then you probably view weaknesses as flaws that can do nothing but harm us.
Humans are prone to error, not perfection. Therefore, when a perfection-seeker makes the inevitable mistake, they are so ashamed of it that they try and cover the mistake up. They refuse to honestly talk about the behavior that led to the mistake.
I’ve met so many Mamas at conventions and speaking engagements who would vigorously nod in agreement that the life of a wholehearted mom is wonderful and superior. In private, they would share their sorrow over wayward children and dead marriages.
The desire to present a positive public face caused them to deny their private pain, which led only to stagnation and feeling stuck.
Chasing Perfection Is a Fool’s Errand
When you embrace your imperfections, you understand that chasing perfection is a fool’s errand. You realize that the human heritage is made up of behaviors that cause error.
However, you don’t stop there. You also realize that the human heritage is a history of learning from those errors and correcting the behaviors that caused them.
The process of growth is contingent on falling down and getting back up. The result is that we learn from our mistakes. It is how we grow as human beings. It is how we have always grown as human beings. It is how our species has grown and it is how we have, so far, survived and thrived.
Learning is the hidden gift of imperfection. It is the reason why embracing imperfection is so essential for personal growth.
What Did We Learn?
When my kids were teens and one of them committed some error, the others would tease and say, “What did we learn?”
Mamas, can we ask ourselves the same question? Can you be honest enough with yourself to look at your past behaviors to examine how they might have contributed to your current difficulty?
In my own journey of learning and moving forward, it has been my endeavor to own what I need to own, call it what it is, learn from it, and do better in the future.
I have had to humbly admit, numerous times, to being impatient, unloving, harsh, judgmental and more. I have called out my imperfections and sought to do what I could to make things right.
At some point in their lives, I have asked each of my kids for forgiveness for how my own screwed-up-ness has harmed them.
By embracing my own imperfections, I have learned from them. After that embrace, I have been committed to being more loving and accepting – of myself and others. Almost everything is better. Not solved or perfect, but better.
Wabi Sabi Says Imperfections Are Beautiful
In dealing with my many issues and numerous imperfections, my therapist introduced me to the idea of Wabi Sabi. Based on Buddhist teachings, Wabi Sabi represents the esthetic theory that everything is perfect not despite imperfections, but because of them.
Wabi Sabi is very loosely translated as “wisdom in natural simplicity.” The Wabi Sabi concept has its roots in the traditional Japanese tea ceremony. Do you have a well-loved tea or coffee cup? When someone else looks at it, they may see a vessel cracked or chipped by use. To you, it’s beautiful!
Most of us don’t like our imperfections. We develop these perceptions from the moment we are born, by looking at how others react to us. But we are rarely taught to look inside ourselves to form our own opinions.
Of course, it is easy to be critical of ourselves. But what is really important to you, personally? Introspection and self-awareness keep us rooted in what is truly real.
The Wabi Sabi philosophy seeks to give innate value to all those scars we have, both physical and emotional. It is the experiences that created these scars that make up who we are today and every day. Those experiences are to be celebrated, even if they hurt at the time.
In viewing ourselves more kindly, we can see where we have experienced pain or challenge and how they have built us up. They have made us stronger and more resilient, and through them, we have learned to persevere. In Wabi Sabi, the ‘broken’ person is stronger, more beautiful and more perfect.
Pinpoint something that you view as a flaw, and begin to think of ways you can try to view that flaw as a benefit.
If you are critical of your large feet, view them as being able to carry you solidly wherever you go. The residual paralysis I have in my face from Bell’s palsy has been a reminder to me of the surface nature of beauty and how fleeting it is.
When an object is created in the Wabi Sabi esthetic, it is not created to be symmetrical or free of imperfections. It is the same with us as human beings! We are beautiful just as we are.
One author, Richard Powell, describes it simply: “Nothing lasts, nothing is finished, and nothing is perfect.” That includes us. Can you embrace imperfection instead of fighting it?
What are some imperfections you have stopped fighting and have started to see their beauty? Have you examined where your need for perfection began? What can you do to fight the urge to be perfect? Please share your thoughts below.
The most common New Year’s resolution is to lose weight and get fit. Sadly, it’s also the hardest one to keep!
I’ve written before about how to handle the challenges during the holiday season of temptations that have us eating too much. But now it’s more about burning off some calories.
Sure, it’s great if you can get to the gym on a regular basis. But if not, and even if you do, why not take every opportunity to burn off a few extra.
Remember, the rule of thumb is that about 3500 calories means a pound gained or lost. So if you can burn off an extra 250 calories in a day, you lose a pound in just two weeks! If you’re patient, just burn 120 a day and lose a pound each month.
The easiest exercises are ones you can do without planning or special equipment. Casual exercise means adding an element of exertion to the way you do everyday activities.
Important Note: Don’t hurt yourself! If you’re not used to a certain type of exercise enter into it very gently. It’s always best to check with your health professional before starting any exercise program.
There are lots of ways to be more active throughout the day. Here are some examples:
At Home or Work
One of my favorites is The Stand Up. Whenever you sit down, stand up again – one, two or even three times – before you remain seated. When doing a standing task, push up on tip-toes and down again. I try to stand on tip-toes as long as I can while washing the dishes.
Instead of watching television on the couch, stand up and do some stretching. Move your body – shoulders, arms, hips, legs.
Get some light dumbbells and do some curls and other movements to strengthen your arms while you burn off calories. I try to watch most of my TV while riding a stationary bicycle.
Out and About
Walk as much as you can. Park your car at the far end of the lot or down the street from your destination (during the day – not at night!). If you have a dog or dogs, walk them a little farther or an extra time or two each day. They’ll love it!
Going to an office, walk up a few flights of stairs instead of taking the elevator. If it’s a high-rise, at least walk up the first three flights, then take the elevator the rest of the way. And take the elevator down – it’s safer and easier on the knees.
While waiting for an elevator – or an appointment, or a bus or train – you can do wall push-aways, gentle squatting up and down, or rock up and down on toes and heels. When you get home from shopping, bring in one bag of groceries at a time.
For more suggestions, see my latest book that teaches The Zen of Losing Weight. Come up with your own list of casual exercises, and, little by little, those pounds will disappear while you feel stronger, more limber and healthier!
What healthy habits have you started this year to continue to feel fit and healthy? Do you love to walk or are you a fan of going to the gym? Do you make it a practice to get up from your desk or chair at least every hour? Please join the conversation with your own healthy strategies.
I’ve noticed women often have a love-hate relationship with visibility. We long to be seen and heard while also being afraid of it.
We seem ambivalent about how we regard those who stand out and this extends to ourselves as well.
It’s an uncomfortable feeling. It bothers us, but we don’t want to discuss it. That might attract unwanted attention.
Tall Poppy Syndrome
I first heard the term ‘tall poppy syndrome’ when an Australian actress mentioned it during an interview. It is a term used to describe those who seem too visible and successful. It’s about wanting to cut tall poppies down when they rise above the crowd.
If we see someone enjoying something we want but don’t have, we can end up condemning the very thing we value. The opposite happens when we want to avoid being viewed as a tall poppy ourselves. We hide our achievements, so we don’t appear to be bragging.
To Be or Not to Be Visible
We experience conflicted feelings about success when our desire for visibility clashes with our want to hide. This gets even more complicated as increasing numbers of Boomer women jump into self-employment. If others don’t know you exist, you don’t have a business.
The same is true with any midlife job search. If you are looking for a new job, you will need to be visible as most of the work available can only be accessed by networking with others – online or off. Even if you apply for a job in person – most employers will check out your online profile.
Many women hate having their photo taken. Some replace their online image with a photo of their pet or a flower. I understand why.
Online trolls who like to offer criticism are a reality. So are creeps looking for a date among your FB posts. And yet, it’s a conundrum – especially with the growth in online video, FaceTime and Skype.
Is Being Visible an Attitude?
In an online discussion I read, women said that visibility was about self-confidence. One advised, “Don’t consent to being invisible.” Another said, “The times in my life that I have felt invisible have never had anything to do with how others saw me, but with how I saw myself.”
Some women said they felt invisible because as they grew older the opposite sex seemed to pay less attention to them. Others said they felt invisible when out with their husbands. A man was addressed when buying a car – while they were ignored.
And yet other women said they sometimes like to feel invisible because they find it less stressful. It gives them a break from unwanted attention and a chance to be alone with their thoughts.
There Is Strength in Female Friendship
Female friendship allows us to be visible with our vulnerabilities. Among friends our own age, we feel connected by our common life experiences and realize we are not alone.
Like-minded women tend to share with each other and offer support. We’ll provide a compassionate ear, lend a helping hand, offer solutions, boost each other up and celebrate each other’s achievements.
We’ll remove our masks and share our joy, sorrow, goals and vulnerabilities. Brene Brown calls vulnerability “the birthplace of joy, creativity, belonging, and love.”
Women are learning that vulnerability can be a strength. To be fully human is to be vulnerable. No one gets out alive. Our younger selves often wore masks as we felt we had to pretend to be someone we’re not.
It’s hard to put yourself out there and open yourself to ridicule. It’s also hard to live a lie by hiding your authentic self. Older women are beginning to let go of any pretense from past roles. We are expressing more of ourselves.
Vulnerability is about a willingness to show up and be seen when we can’t control the outcome. It takes courage.
Life Is One Risk After Another
It is when we let down our defenses and express more of who we really are that we become more fully alive and human. We need to take chances. When we experience a full range of emotions that includes both joy and pain, we allow our emotions in – rather than deny them.
When we guard ourselves against love because we’re afraid of losing it – we’ve already lost. Part of being vulnerable means reaching out to others and asking for support, rather than going it alone.
Offering support is also a risk. We can offer kindness, affection or love and be rejected. We can reach for a goal and fall short of it and then look foolish in a public forum. It’s still worth the risk.
Let Yourself Be Seen and Heard
Even though as children we may have sung about “letting our little light shine,” as adults we still have a tendency to “hide it under a bushel.”
We all have dreams and challenges. A woman’s circle is good medicine for the soul. Sixty and Me is our circle.
Do you have conflicted feelings about wanting to be heard and yet also not wanting to stand out? Please share your thoughts and insights with our community using the comments section below.
Jan Moore is a Midlife Reinvention Coach who helps women enjoy more Travel, Adventure and Creativity. After 20+ years as a Career Counsellor and Workshop Facilitator, Jan transitioned into self-employment when she wrote the book Work On Your Own Terms in Midlife and Beyond.
4 Ways to Pamper Yourself in Retirement Without Breaking the Bank - YouTube
We all deserve to feel pampered once in a while. But, unfortunately, we don’t always have the money to treat ourselves to life’s little luxuries. Well, today, I want to offer 4 fun suggestions for pampering yourself, without breaking the bank. I hope that you enjoy today’s video! Come join us for a cup of tea (or coffee) and a chat. And, if you enjoy the show, please tell one friend about us today. Your support means so much to me!
Want to get more from Sixty and Me? Find out more about everything we offer on our start page.
What small, inexpensive things do you pamper yourself? What do you do to relax? How do you plan on spending your “retirement,” if you plan on retiring? Let’s have a chat! Please join the conversation and tell one other woman about Sixty and Me today. The more the merrier!
Decades ago, I heard a doctor on the radio reminding his listeners that, when it comes to medication, “If it’s strong enough to help you, it’s strong enough to hurt you.” This sentence stuck with me over the years and, whenever I have been offered a pill or potion, I remembered this simple wisdom.
Of course, like everyone else, there have been times when I have had no choice but to take medication. But, I try to limit my intake of pharmaceuticals as much as possible.
Now, as the opioid problem in America reaches epidemic proportions, this kind of thinking is more important than ever.
Furthermore, it’s not just consumers that need to remember that drugs are not just cures for illnesses but also potential causes of future problems. Our doctors could also use a reminder of this simple truth.
We Think that Our Doctors Are Infallible
From the time that we are kids, we are taught to respect our doctors. There is good reason for this. Listening to your doctor could, quite literally, mean the difference between life and death.
Unfortunately, our doctors are also people. As much as they like to think that they can “see through” advertising from big pharmaceutical companies, the truth is that they are just as susceptible as anyone else.
The only difference is that their cognitive biases and false beliefs have the power to change the course of our lives.
OxyContin Maker Spent Millions of Dollars Marketing to Doctors
OxyContin is the best-selling opioid painkiller in the world. For decades, its producer, Purdue, marketed its benefits to doctors in the United States and other countries.
From their perspective, they were marketing a revolutionary time-released product that had the potential to change lives.
Now, however, a set of new lawsuits claims that their marketing strongly influenced doctors and may have contributed to the current opioid abuse problem in the U.S.
OxyContin Advertising Pulled and Sales Jobs Cut… Will Other Companies Follow?
In response, in part, to the lawsuits that it is facing, OxyContin producer, Purdue has agreed to stop marketing directly to doctors. In addition, more than 50% of its sales force has been let go.
This means that doctors may feel less pressure to – or at the very least think twice about – prescribing opioids to their patients.
The big question now is whether other companies will change their policies like Purdue has. We can only hope that they care about the health of their customers as much as they value their profits.
Why do you think that the opioid problem has gotten out of control in the U.S. and other countries? What do you think about Purdue, the maker of OxyContin’s, decision to stop marketing the product to doctors? Let’s have a conversation!
There are many reasons that we love Helen Mirren. She is an amazing actress, with 26 major awards to her name, including one Oscar. She is a champion for women’s rights and an outspoken critic of sexism and ageism. And, as today’s story demonstrates, despite her continued success as an actress, she is a down-to-earth lady who can even make riding the bus look fabulous!
Helen Mirren Arrived at the Premier for Winchester in Style
As you may know, Helen Mirren’s new film, Winchester, just released this month. It is a horror story about a peculiar heiress, Sarah Winchester, who thinks that she is being haunted by the victims of her family’s weapons.
Take a quick look at the trailer and then I’ll share a picture of Helen showing up at the premier in style… well, stylish in spirit, in any case!
WINCHESTER - Official Trailer - HD (Helen Mirren, Jason Clarke) - YouTube
Given the importance of any movie premier, you would expect Helen Mirren to show up in a limousine or perhaps a chauffeured Mercedes Maybach. After all, with all the camera’s flashing, who wouldn’t want to look their best?
Mirren Can Make Riding the Bus Look Fabulous!
Well, apparently, Helen Mirren is one of those women who knows that style and class come from within. Instead of showing up in a car that costs more than most people’s houses, she rode a public bus to the premier.
Now, admittedly, the bus wasn’t full. It wasn’t like she had to fight for a handrail. But, she still made an effort… and that’s the main thing!
Here’s a quick snap that Helen asked someone to take to commemorate her bus ride. Personally, I just love the juxtaposition of the functional bus and Mirren’s gorgeous red evening gown! Don’t you?
Winchester hit movie theaters across the United States on February 2nd. Despite the fact that reviewers have not been kind to the film, we are sure that Helen Mirren’s performance will save the day. It always does!
Helen Mirren Has Been in the News a Lot Lately
Despite being in her 70s, Helen Mirren continues to show the world that age is just a number. In addition to appearing in 4 films in 2018, Mirren made news last week when she took off her clothes to support a cancer charity.
Helen is a brave, intelligent and supremely talented person and we are lucky to have her representing our generation. Let’s let her know what we think of her.
What would you do if you saw Helen Mirren sitting on the bus in front of you? Are you a Helen Mirren fan? Are you going to go see Winchester? Let’s have a chat!
I know this feeling of sameness so well. It starts with being grumpy for a few days or weeks – on edge, short-tempered. Then I’ll start sleeping poorly. I know that it’s taken a hold on me when I don’t want to get up in the morning, when I pull the covers over my head instead of going out on a run.
After a lot of machinations, including denial, a temper tantrum or two, and maybe even outright depression, it will occur to me that something has to change in my life. Sometimes, it’s just a routine that needs to be altered, but other times, I realize I need to make a broader transformation.
When I finally make my way through what’s really going on with me and make a change, I experience one of the best feelings in life. As writer Ellen Glasgow once wrote, “The only difference between a rut and a grave is their dimensions.”
Still, making a change is not always easy. Where do I start? How big a change should I make? If your life needs some shaking up, consider these five ways to get things going in a better direction.
Make a Small Change in Your Regular Routine
Drive a different route to work or the store. Read a genre of book you don’t normally read. Go to the movies in the middle of the afternoon. Take a long walk on a new path. Any kind of change will begin to break up the pattern, and you’ll start to feel more creative about everything.
If you give it a few days, you will also start to feel a growing sense of empowerment because you’re taking over the reins of your life.
You’re starting to control what you can control – parts of your schedule and the items and events that receive your attention. You’ll be surprised how much these small alterations begin to work their way into larger areas of your life.
Engage in a Life Inventory
Divide a sheet of paper in half the long way. On the left, list the activities and interests in your life that truly benefit you as a person. On the right, list those that do not. Just brainstorm, and don’t spend too much time on each item. There is no right or wrong answer.
This will give you a literal picture of how you’re viewing your life at this moment – what’s working for you and what isn’t.
If you’re like most of us, there are things on the right side of the page that you can’t do anything about at this point. You may have a few years until retirement, for example, so you can’t quit your job, even if it is no longer satisfying.
But if it’s there on the Non-Beneficial side of the page, you can break it down into a page of its own. What’s working for you at your job and what isn’t? Are there parts of it you can change? Are there different ways to approach it?
Take Control of What You Can Control
According to motivational speaker Steve Maraboli who wrote Life, the Truth, and Being Free, “Incredible change happens in your life when you decide to take control of what you do have power over instead of craving control over what you don’t.” An inventory can help you see exactly what you’re working with.
Add Something New to Your Life
If you’re bored, or in a rut, or frustrated with the rat race, adding an entirely new activity can change your outlook, your routine and even your set of friends. Join a book group, take a class at a local community college, find a maker’s space in your area and start painting.
We all have long lists of things we’d like to try and now is the perfect time to do it. You don’t have to view it as “the thing you were meant to do”, rather it’s just something new you’d like to try.
Let Something Go
If there is something you’d like to let go of, and you can do it, then go for it. Maybe you have a relationship in your life that’s no longer working.
Perhaps you participate in a regular activity that has ceased being interesting to you. It might even be time to quit that job and start another one, if you can do it without blowing up your whole life.
We hold onto things because it sometimes makes us feel safe to do so. But if it’s slowly killing us, it’s time to let it go, start a new life and just breathe.
Journalist Linda Ellerbee wrote, “What I like most about change is that it’s a synonym for ‘hope.’ If you are taking a risk, what you are really saying is, ‘I believe in tomorrow and I will be part of it.’”
Schedule Regular Attitude Check-Ups
Just like we do with our physical health, we need to check our attitudes consistently to make sure everything is working as we want it to. Especially if you’re making changes, you need to check in occasionally to follow-up on your feelings about these transformations.
You may find yourself happier back at square one, or you could decide to change things further. The point is to be conscious about what’s working for you and what isn’t.
When sailing ships enter into areas with calm winds, they can get trapped for days or weeks at a time. This is called the ‘doldrums,’ and it can happen to people, too. If we stay in one place too long, we can get stuck – a feeling very similar to the one where we don’t want to get out of bed.
Change can be scary, but it can also be the catalyst that will help us enjoy and appreciate our lives in a new way. Take an inventory and make a change. It’s the difference between slogging through life in an unconscious state and being truly alive.
What can you change in your life that would make it more interesting? If you could add something new, what would it be? If you could let something go, what would it be? Please share your thoughts below.
Ginny McReynolds is a longtime writer. She holds an MFA in Creative Nonfiction from Goucher College, and writes about communication, retirement, reinvention, self-concept and creativity in The Washington Post, Curve magazine, and Together.guide. Please visit her blog called Finally Time for This: A Beginner’s Guide to the Second Act of Life.
Thinning of the bones is inevitable for women after 60, right? For 10 years I was hovering in the osteopenia range, blond, blue-eyed, with Northern European heritage. I thought I had to just live with it, swallow my calcium, eat my greens and keep exercising to combat the onslaught of aging.
Then my doctor told me that calcium absorption from supplements is not significant enough to warrant taking it. So that left eating my greens and exercise.
I hate swallowing supplements because I forget to take them, which makes me feel like I’m failing myself – a slow drain on my cognitive confidence. I happily skipped this part of my daily routine and lived without guilt.
Importance of a Bone Density Test
Four years passed, and the time came for a bone density test. I wondered if I should even bother. After all, I was doing all there was to do, the rest was up to my genetics and the universe. Then a friend said, “Go do it. Your numbers must have improved with all the walking and carrying you do.”
So I did the test and nervously anticipated the results. I didn’t wait for my follow-up appointment and went directly to my patient portal to read the results. To my disappointment, my osteopenia had increased by 3.4%. Bummer! Now I totally depended on my genetics.
I tried to forget the disappointing news and went in to my follow-up appointment with my doctor. She actually congratulated me! “Why,” I said, “my numbers are up!”
“Oh, no, your bone density has increased,” she said. “It’s easy to misinterpret the results the way they were written, as it talks about osteopenia. It says here the density of the bones in your lower body has increased by 3.4%, slightly less in your pelvis, but overall you’re doing great and that at your age (70)!”
The doctor was very intrigued by the results, and asked me, “What have you been doing for this to happen?”
I told her, “I eat organic greens from my garden. I don’t take calcium, there is not much dairy in my diet, but I walk, hike and backpack. A lot!”
I told her about my long treks on the Pacific Crest Trail every summer for the last 5 years, my training schedule and my weekly walks. “I also add strength training as part of my training for the long trail.”
We agreed that the walking and backpacking had proven their worth in the osteoporosis battle. I’m not a statistical anomaly. I have proven a point by doing what science has shown will work.
Here is how to combat your thinning bones.
Enjoy Calcium Rich Foods
Eat foods that are rich in calcium like kale, broccoli, sardines, yogurt or kefir, cheese and bok choy.
Do Weight-Bearing Exercise
Start slow with low-impact exercise, such as walking.
Move up to jogging, jumping rope or carrying a backpack on the trails.
Exercise 30 minutes 5x/week, or 50 minutes 3x/week.
Do strength training 2x/week.
It takes strong resolve to keep strong bones. Wouldn’t you rather walk toward the end of your life than getting there falling, breaking bones and being in a wheelchair?
What have you done to combat your thinning bones? Please engage in the conversation!
Dami Roelse encourages her clients to live life with engagement. She blogs and coaches women 50+ to walk, hike and backpack. Her book “Walking on the Wild Side” is forthcoming. You can find out more about Dami at Transformation Travel.
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