Fitness

Avoiding the Rocking Chair

Last week I went to visit the grandchildren in Ohio.  It was a such a wonderful visit filled with walks and PlayDoh and bubbles, along with a little road trip.   I also had my 51st birthday.   Now I’m not saying that I’m old, however I did feel a little old while I was there.  I was still recovering from a bad fall I took while running (I fall a lot) and I also spent a lot of time getting in and out of the back seat of their minivan.  Rocking Grandma

It got me thinking about aging – physically, so I thought I’d ask our Go Grandmas what they’re doing to avoid that rocking chair.  Here are a few of their tips:

Andrea G. (Minnesota): I walk every day in the summer but I’ll need to find indoor exercise before seasons change.

Valora O. (Minnesota): I walk 2 miles a day plus I lift feed bags!

Susan M.:  Stretch, stretch, stretch – and do some form of exercise at least 3X a week. I dance and do isometric exercises and calisthenics and then always stretch afterward.

Sherry K. (Canada): Yoga! I recommend starting in a small hatha yoga class with a mature instructor that is well-versed in accommodations for injuries, who can help you avoid incorrect/bad positioning.   Youtube Fightermaster Yoga

 

I think they’re all on to something – walking and yoga/stretching seem to be the key.  I do my share of walking/running but I struggle with yoga.   When you’re used to arriving at a destination while running, it becomes difficult to calm your mind and body enough to enjoy the benefits of yoga.  Laura Devine at Real Fit Workout Studio got me started with a few yoga classes and I’ve try to continue it on my own.  I’m definitely a believer, just not committed … at least until now!

I found this great article titled Health Aging into your 80’s and Beyond on the Consumer Reports website.  It lists “5 Keys to a Long and Healthful Life”.

The first key is Manage Your Health.   Ok – busted.  I have high blood pressure that is unmanaged.  I just keep calling it chronic high blood pressure or sometimes I call it “white coat syndrome” .  I should probably “manage that.

The next key is “Keeping Your Body Strong“.  I like this quote:

“Here’s a quick test to find out whether your fitness has deteriorated to a point that puts you at risk: Time how long it takes you to get out of an armchair, walk 10 feet, walk back, and sit down again. A healthy adult older than 60 should be able to do it in 10 seconds or less.”

Score!  I can do that in well under 10 seconds.  It then goes on to list a few things you can do to help:

  • Do 150 minutes of cardio every week
  • Add strength training
  • Keep your balance
  • Stay flexible

Well – I’ve got the cardio down no problem – but I don’t lift weights, I have poor balance (proven by my many falls) and I can barely touch my toes.  Check out the link above to find out what the rest of the KEYS are.

Grandmas – I’ve got some work to do.  How about you?

Travel

Making the MOST of a Quick Grandma Visit

We got some great advice this week on our topic – Making the Most of a Quick Visit.  Sometimes our grandchildren just live too darn far away so when we get to see them, we need to make it count!   Here’s what some of our followers had to say about that:

Lorri S, CANADA  – My trips to Ottawa are often for a long weekend only which means ALL granny time!  Sometimes the only thing we do is walk to the park, play Play Dough, snack, nap and REPEAT.  It’s GLORIOUS.

Perfect!  Sounds like when Lorri visits her littles, she plans on doing nothing else but play.

Martha L., MINNESOTA –  Soak it all in.  Love them until you and/or they drop, sleep and repeat.

I think Lorri and Martha are definitely my kind of grandma.  Play hard and nap harder!

Pauline has some great advice on being “present” with your littles:

Pauline V., MINNESOTA – Just listen, listen, listen.  They solve so many dilemmas on their own.  I picked up my 3 1/2 year old grandson from daycare a few weeks ago.  I asked if he wanted to come to my house or go home.  He said he would like to go to Disney World and see Jurassic Park again.   After some thought he responded with “oh, wait a minute – I think they’re closed today.”  So instead we enjoyed his favorite park and I didn’t have to disappoint him.

That is so adorable!

I also asked grandmas what their thoughts were on bringing gifts when they visit their littles.  I kind of thought the response would be mixed.  Like maybe you can overdo it with gifts or maybe the moms found the gifts to overwhelming BUT – I was completely wrong!

Claudia J., MINNESOTA – Gifts are always a good idea!

Andrea G., MINNESOTA – Why not?  I give gifts because it makes me happy.

Sandy C., CANADA – Gifts for sure.  I take something every now and then even if it’s small like sidewalk chalk.

Martha L., MINNESOTA – Of course gifts!  That’s part of the fun of being a grandma.  Spoil them!

Well, gifts it is then.  IMG_9045

Do you have any more tips for Making the Most of a Quick Visit?