Tuesday, March 29, 2016

4 part body maintenance

Once past 75, it seems to me, that it is easy to decide that body is no longer capable of advanced performance and that exercise should be dropped.  I don't want to do that.  I try to use four parts to an exercise program.  They seem within reason, valuable and not too strenuous.  If I am too tired after exercise, I figure I am overdoing it.

Part one- Yoga - I like to do four yoga exercises when I wake up on an exercise day, which, for me, is Monday, Wednesday and Friday. I do 10 cobras, 40 sec. Child, 8 bridges and 8 kickbacks.  Takes about 10 minutes.

Part two - Short run - I run a half mile with two spurts at my top speed for about 300 feet each. Another 10 minutes.  At this point, I usually have morning coffee and some breakfast.  I like to do the yoga before running and I find I can run better with a completely empty stomach.

Part three - Walk - I walk between a mile and 2.5 miles.  40-45 minutes.

Sometimes, it works better to move to Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday because the MWF set is the most popular at the gym and gives me a good chance of having to wait to use a machine.

Part four - Weights - I do eight lifts on a standing squat machine, eight leg openings and eight leg closings, 8 chest/arm lifts, 4-6 pull-ups on with 40-30 lbs of assistance, 6 rotator cuff lifts and 6-8 jumping jack-type lifts on a wobbly inflated hemisphere.  About 15 minutes. I am not a big one for timing but the parking meters give a maximum of 20 min and I usually have about 5 minutes left on my meter.

If there is bad weather or meetings and appointments interfere, I move some of the program to another day or skip it. I sometimes use an exercise bike instead of part two but I don't like extended time on a bike or treadmill.  I do much better exercising outside than on aerobic machines.

When we travel, I don't do any of the program and a longer trip can mean lots of sitting.  We got back from our 18-day trip a week ago and today was the first day I felt up to doing all four parts.

I have read and used many fitness books over the years.  I am not a fitness nut and have no interest in spending any more time exercising than seems to give a good payoff.  I feel good, both energetic and virtuous, when I have done all four parts.  The best book lately has been "The First Twenty Minutes" by Gretchen Reynolds, one of the writers on the "Well" blog in the New York Times.

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