Fitness after 50

This post is meant to feature some of the core topics I’d like to focus on within this blog.  The main items of Finance, Food and Fitness, will eventually be referenced on my “about me” page.  These posts are meant to be a “Starting point” for readers and visitors.  It’s always an open dialog, but I’d like to share my experiences with the hope that it might help someone else. Let’s get to it.

Not me

I must admit, I never thought I’d be in this position at a young 50 yrs old.

In January of 2019 I’m scheduled to have a full hip replacement. It’s touched every aspect of my life.

I used to chuckle at the “Senior citizen” jokes on Golden Girls or other shows.  So and so broke a hip.  Yuck, yuck!. Heck, even Larry David had a song that he entitled, “My Freaking Back is Killing Me and It’s Making It Hard to Kvell.”   I had some good belly laughs out of that one.

You know what though?, It’s not so funny when it’s happening to you. When my wife asked my doctor, “What is the worst outcome for hip replacement surgery”, he quickly responded, “Death and you have a 1 in 500 chance of that happening.”   I don’t say this to scare people, but it’s a VERY sobering to hear something like that. A lot of my future posts are going to focus on the mental aspect of getting “ramped up” to take personal responsibility for your care.

Let me just describe to you a “vicious cycle” and hope you can avoid getting caught up in such a thing.  It looks something like this:

You hurt your back or hip.
You can’t move as much so you gain weight. (20+ pounds in a year)
You use pain killer of choice (pills, alcohol, sleep)
Weight gain puts even more pressure on your joints
and the cycle repeats.  Let me emphasize here, how dangerous this cycle is. This could derail your career or totally alter your quality of life. NO ONE IS GOING to look out for your own well being as much as yourself, so you should really be on board for fighting and breaking this cycle. 

I always remember my Mother saying when I was in my 20’s and 30’s: “Oh Jim, REAL health issues don’t even START until you’re 40.”  She lived to be 87, but just think about that for a minute and where you are currently.

I’m going to leave that topic there for now, but will be closely documenting my upcoming hip surgery that is scheduled for late January and how using some of the modern tools below have helped me fight off depression and will ultimately get me fully back on track.

Modern tools

Fitness for me after 50 also includes monitoring certain aspects of my health more closely.  I’m a firm believer that modern medicine is shifting away from “face to face” contact with medical professionals and more “self-monitoring.”  People who can do this effectively and CONSISTENTLY are going to have a better quality of life and more input about treatment options. You’re going to want to have as much historic data as possible. More data is always better than less but it needs to turned into information that can be interpreted. 
I’ve been monitoring my weight on a daily basis over the past 8 years and can track weight gains to specific events in my life. (new job, job loss, back pain, etc.)

My short of list of things that I leverage for my health are:
My Fitness Pal (calorie and nutrition monitoring)
Fitbit or other fitness/step counter
Blood Pressure monitoring w/ automatic logging
Scale and weight monitoring w/ automatic logging
CPAP – w/ data downloads available
23 and Me DNA analysis to monitor ongoing research and discoveries
Audible books and other books and reading resources

These are all what I consider modern tools and we’re going to take a look at them to help monitor health efficiently. In future posts, we’ll dissect each of these items and how you can leverage them to your advantage.

Mental skills

Finally, gaining soft skill tools like empathy and gratitude are going to be huge in your transformation.  These “soft skills” are often glossed over, or simply ignored all together, especially by men.  I’ve learned a lot about gratitude by being sidelined and seeing others move around freely.  In addition to the availability of new “technical tools”,  there is a lot to be said about the “community” aspects that can accompany these tools.  No matter what we face, we can overcome it and come out better on the other side.  I’m looking forward to these topics just as much as anything I might write about becoming a millionaire because I’ve truly learned that health equals wealth.

Fitness after 50