How To Get Great Work-Out In The Pool

I recently made the jump... into the pool! It has been YEARS since I last did a swim work-out, but I have been hearing about the great results people are getting from their swim routine. This also a great way for aging baby boomers to stay young increase fitness and cardiovascular health. No jarring on the bones and joints, and it can be quite a stress relief as you get into your zone. If you want an even better work-out, try the following helpful tips by Mark Schubert, head of the U.S. National Team and seven-time Olympic swimming coach.
  • Keep Your Heart Rate Up - to around 80% of your maximum heart rate for as much of your work out as you can. To ensure you are staying in the "zone" stop after every 10 to 15 laps to count your pulse, using the pool clock, counting for six seconds then tack a zero onto the number. Vigorous swimming can burn up to 680 calories, based on a 150 pound woman.
  • Play with Pool Toys - by incorporating kick boards, hand paddles, swim fins or those foam buoys you place between your legs. Not only will you burn more calories, but it these toys will help you tone arm and leg muscles, too.
  • Change it up - by breaking up your laps into what pros call a ladder. Start with one lap, then two laps, three laps, four laps, five laps, six laps, and back down with, five laps, four laps, three laps, two laps, and finally one lap. Give yourself a rest of 15 to 30 seconds between each segment.
  • Get Racy - Swimming fast burns calories better, but you don't have to speed through your whole workout to get the benefits. Try doing one length easy, then one length fast, two easy then two fast and so on. This is also a good way to work up your stamina.
  • No Rest For the Weary - No more than 10% of your water time should be spent loitering in your lane. Try cutting your rests in half or limit your rest to 10 second pauses between laps or intervals.

Eat Healthy and Pay Less

In this time of economic crisis, everyone is trying to find ways to save a buck. Me too, though I don't want to sacrifice good healthy foods to do it. I would like to pass on some helpful tips on how you can spend less and still enjoy organic produce and free-range meats.
"The secret to eating well on a budget is not to give up the high quality foods you love, but to buy only what you need, and then be sure to use everything that you buy." says Mollie Katzen, author of The Vegetable Dishes I Can't Live Without
The following expert tips will help you discover how you can eat healthy for less.
  • Know your budget: "Before you can start spending less, you have to know what your budget is." ~ says Katzen. Save all your food related receipts - grocery store, farmers' market and restaurants for a month to determine what you're really spending. Save $ by cutting out non essentials like take-out foods and coffee to go.
  • Plan a weeks worth of menus: Start with two or three dishes, then come up with others that utilize similar food items that are not used up in another recipe, this way nothing gets wasted.
  • Shop around: Comparison shopping is critical, but it's not just comparing one store's prices to another, also look for conveniences, like precooked foods, for bargains. Save up to $2 per item if you buy loose greens instead of pre-washed and whole veggies instead of pre-sliced ones.
  • Find coupons on-line: These days you don't have to be a coupon clipper, you can find a multitude of organic companies offering coupons on-line - just a click away. Check out to download coupons.
  • High Nutrients: "To really get your money's worth, buy foods that are high in nutrients," says Katzen. Broccoli and celery are priced the same, but every dollar you spend on broccoli buys you much more vitamin C, iron and fiber.
  • Cut down on meat: Even the cheapest cuts of meat are expensive these days. Build your meal around other proteins such as beans. Replace meat with protein-rich barley, and pinto, kidney and black beans in soups ans stews. A pound of beef costs nearly $4 while a pound of dried beans is $1.50.
  • Seasonal produce: Buying what's in season at your local farmers' market will give you the freshest choices and the most nutrients for less. You can even buy extra strawberries, peaches, or other fruits or vegetables, and freeze them to use during off season times when the prices generally double.
  • Buy in bulk: When buying dried beans, grains and spices in bulk, you can get the exact quantity you need, and reduce wasting your foods. You will also save money and get a fresher product.
  • Join Warehouse store: You can find organic foods at Costco and Sam's Club now, and get an even greater bargain. This may be time to plan several meals around the foods as you will be buying a larger quantity than from a grocery store.
  • Grow your own food: You don't need a big back yard to grow your own produce. Any spot in the sun will do. Plan fresh herbs, tomatoes, even zucchini in pots. You can even "can" your own tomatoes and use them in the winter for additional savings.

Staying Fit & Having Fun - A Healthy Spin on Things!

About Three years ago I decided that jogging was going to do my knees in and it just wasn't so enjoyable for me anymore. That's when I started evaluating my choices based on my age, my location and my exercise time constraints

I live in California (I'm lucky to have decent weather most of the time), in a small town with beautiful rolling hills and lots of horse ranches and vineyards. I looked around at what people who came to visit did, (besides all the touristy things like wine tasting and eating pastries), and realized that a majority of them cycled. Turns out there are an amazing amount of great cycling routes right outside my front door.

I started my cycle fitness by taking spin classes. It may not be necessary for everyone to start this way, but it gave me the confidence to know that I had built up the stamina for staying out for an hour or two on my bike. Another way to do this, is to purchase a "trainer" for your road bike. It is a stationary device in which you place your bike and do your work out without leaving your house, garage or where ever you place your trainer and bike combo. This is also a good way to get to know your bike, how to shift the gears, where to place your hands, etc.

Now it was time to do some serious cycling, so I signed up for a few local events. I started with the 50 mile rides and worked up to the 100 miles rides. Now I am hooked! What a great way to get out, see the beautiful countryside and get invigorated.

Burn calories and boost your cardiovascular health. Biking is a low-impact way to accomplish both of these. It's an idea activity if you have lower-back or knee problems.

Before exercising, Stretch out. Do gentle movement-based stretches like arm circles and walking lunges to increase your range of motion. After your ride, when your body is sufficiently warm, switch to held stretches, like hip flexor stretch (good for hips tight from sitting at a desk).

When considering which bike to purchase...
First, decide what type of riding fits your lifestyle and agenda. For trail riding, choose a rugged mountain bike. For riding long distances on paved roads, choose a lightweight, speedy road bike. For commuting to work or running errands (a great way to burn calories while you accomplish daily tasks) consider a hybrid bike, which combines some features of mountain and road bikes.

Does your bike fit you properly?
As a general guideline, you should be able to stand over the bike, with your feet on the ground, with an inch or two of clearance between your tailbone and the top bar of the bike. The saddle should be sized to support your sit bones but not your entire rear-end.

Choose a bike based on how comfortable you feel on it, how easy it is to switch gears and whether you feel confident on it.

The Road to Aging Healthy

This is the beginning of a journey I hope will inspire all, especially those of a certain age, shall I say "baby boomers", you know who you are! I am excited at the prospect of learning as much as I am able to share. In this blog I hope to excite and enlighten those individuals who want to live a full youthful life as they aspire to age healthy and well. Staying young in body and mind is not only a dream, it is a reality if only we learn healthy habits.
Join me as we travel the road to healthy aging together. Share your stories, your battles, your triumphs with other baby boomers as we navigate the road to staying young together.

Stay tuned for Tons of Great Inspiration and Information!!

I intend to share all my tips for staying young:
  • Eating healthy delicious foods
  • Sharing Easy Healthy Recipes
  • Simple Menu Plans
  • Diet Plans and Helpful hhints
  • Exercise ideas that are easy to stick with
  • How to keep it all together while traveling
  • Medical back-up on Why it's so important to stay healthy
  • Loads of other helpful tid-bits