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Tuesday, September 22, 2020
Boomers are booming!

Get Busy!

           There are lots of challenges for Baby Boomers these days. Not the least of these is keeping mind, body and soul together. Seems if we’re not struggling to keep our knees in working order, we’re struggling to remember where we put our keys!

         There are many ways to stay healthy such as eating right, getting plenty of sleep and staying on top of things with our physicians. But there are also lots of fun ways to stay healthy and vital. Lucky for us, there are plenty of fun ways to stay mentally and physically fit.
         For instance, you can get together regularly with friends to play card and board games such as Rook or Scrabble. Your brain is sort of like a muscle…you have to use it or you lose it. Scrabble is a good way to keep the brain sharp and active and maintain a good vocabulary.  Card games help with mental skills such as memorization and strategy.   And scheduling regular card or board games...perhaps taking turns hosting...keeps us active and involved with others.
        Has it been awhile since you exercised? Well, there are several ways to ease back into the routine.
         Walking is the best way to get back into an exercise routine.  A regular walk first thing in the morning or after dinner will soon become a habit you won't want to miss...particularly if you walk with your spouse, a friend or your favorite furry companion.  There are several nice walking tracks right here in Shelby County.  The F.A.C. has a nice elevated track in the gym for members.  Several of the local churches maintain walking tracks in their family activity centers.  These indoor tracks are great in the summer time when it's too hot to walk outside.  And they are a great place to meet other walkers. 
         Yoga is also a good way to ease back into physical activity. Not only is the gentle stretching good for strength and balance, but the focus needed to maintain yoga positions is good for the mind.  Check with the library, local fitness centers and the F.A.C. for yoga classes.
         If you are looking for something a little different, try Tai Chi. An oriental tradition, Tai Chi uses slow dance-like movements and controlled breathing to relax and gently stretch the whole body. And it’s great for balance. You can find basic Tai Chi movements online and make a short 20-minute Tai Chi session part of your early morning routine.
          For those who like to move to the rhythm of their favorite tunes but don't have a partner, line dancing is great for mind and body.  Beginner line dance is low impact, easy on the knees and hips and best of all fun.  Dancing helps maintain the kind of mind/body connections that help prevent falls.  Our local library offers regular line dancing classes on Wednesday nights. 
          For those lucky souls who have spouses who like to dance, by all means take dance classes together.  Not only will you be exercising your body and mind, you'll also be reinforcing your connection as a couple through touch, fun and laughter.
         Isolation, loneliness and depression are big problems in the retired population. We humans are wired for relationships and interaction with other people, and the camaraderie that comes with joining a card group or exercise class gets us out of the recliner and out of the house. It’s one of the best ways to head off problems such as depression, anxiety and even suicide in the Boomer population.

      So, get out there and get busy!