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2023 Focus: Better Health & Aging

2023 Focus: Better Health & Aging

2023 Focus: Better Health & Aging

Posted on January 10, 2023

Being of a certain age and being of better – actually optimum, health is imp0rtant to me. With that in mind, these are my five aging resolutions for 2023:

Being of a certain age and being of better – actually optimum, health is important to me. With that in mind, these are my five aging resolutions for 2023:

1. Walk More

Walking is the easiest way in which I stay active. While some folks utilize walking with friends with socializing, I am a solitary walker. Blessed with long legs, I’m built for speed. So, while I enjoy the occasional midday stroll with a friend, midday, I’m out the door every morning between 5 and 6am for a good old-fashioned power walk.

I’ve come to relish the solitude, during the 4 – 5 mile long paths I take. I plan my day, pray and enjoy the quite company of the stars and moon when present. Early morning walking on the southwest coast of Florida, provides other “night” sky entertainment and wonder while observing shooting stars, cloud lightening and the occasional rocket launch coming out of Cape Canaveral, on the east side of the state.

Up until recently I made a point of changing up my walk to a 5-mile interval run once a week. However, a knee “tweak,” as can happen to those of us of that certain age, has brought that to a halt. As the knee seems to be in no hurry to mend, I plan to add StreetStrider Elliptical to my morning outings. This will afford me the benefit of adding strength, flexibility and balance to my endurance regime.

2. Advance Planning for Healthcare

About every 6 – 8 years I review my advance care directives. This is important to me as I have firm preferences about future medical treatment, particularly in the event:

a. I might not be able to make my own medical treatment decisions and

b. Those preferences are different from what my husband and daughter would want for me.

This year, January serves as the perfect time to review my general power of attorney, by touching base with my primary and secondary primary medical treatment decision makers or general power of attorney (POA) to affirm they have every intention of adhering to my wishes. I will also remind my (PCP) primary care provider about my values, beliefs and healthcare preferences.

At the same time, I will review my durable power of attorney expectations and make any changes.

3. Review to make sure my Personal Health Record is up to date.

I’ve been fortunate to have recently come off of a few medications that I had been taken for a few decades, as my overall health has continued to improve due to those daily walks (rain or shine – sure the neighbor’s wonder . . .) and healthy diet modifications. Regular weigh ins and self-blood pressure measurement twice a week, help me keep on track.

Review is also the perfect time to see if I am in need of vaccine boosters or immunizations, colonoscopy or other screening tests that would otherwise not be on my radar.

4. Socialize, contribute and nourish my soul.

Ever the optimist, and in spite of of the death of our son in 2022, during these last months, I’ve come to appreciate how very important, vital even, to daily: a) be present and participatory in relationships and b) contribute, to give back - by making a difference is also key to my well-being.

With a deeper-in-my-soul appreciation of family, I have learned (painfully so) there is no part of daily life that should ever be taken for granted. Even though we are geographically separated from our daughter and granddaughters by great distances, connecting remotely is a blessing and a highlight of my day.

I am also benefitting many ways through the renewed appreciation of being involved in community by giving back through volunteering. Through participating on nonprofit boards and church, I am fulfilled. I also feel privileged - beyond words – the ways in which the work of my profession and business also serves to nourish my soul.

5. Preventing falls by adding exercises that challenge my balance.

Above and beyond my #1: Walk More . . . and the appreciation of being “of a certain age,” I am well aware I need to be paying attention to balance. I fully expect the above-mentioned acquisition of the elliptical StreetStrider, this year, will serve to assure balance will no longer be a concern.

Along with leg strength, balance is a common cause of falls in “mature,” notice I am not using the term “older” adults. I periodically evaluate my strength and balance. The 4-Stage Balance Test is easy to do for me as a great baseline:

Through these resolutions, I fully expect 2023 to be a year of Better Aging and Health. As always, feel free to share your thoughts, comments and suggestions with me at: [email protected]

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