Tag Archive | boomer exercise

Break on through

Sometimes it’s easy to get stuck when you’re feeling overloaded. For me, much overload is self-inflicted, like the piles of books and magazines I need (and want) to read, the sewing to be done, the garden to plant, the blog posts to write. You get the picture.

And because, Ayurvedically speaking, I’m a vata/pitta, heavy on the vata, when I get stuck I tend to spin in circles, metaphorically and sometimes physically, when I really need to do what it takes to break on through to the other side and get back to the business – or pleasure – at hand.

For me, that entails either listening to loud, good music or exercise. Sometimes both, as in just turning up the tunes and kitchen-dancing.

I’ve felt particularly stuck lately, with the shoulders and the sore shin and the growing piles of stuff in my house, not to mention the construction going on upstairs and all the work I need to get done.

John called me a “whirling dervish” the other night, which stopped me in my tracks for a discussion along the lines of, “Yes, Sufism is a type of Islam,” (me) and, “No, I think it’s something else,” (John). That entailed a Google search to prove that it is indeed the mystical branch of Islam, and oh, by the way remember that poem by Rumi that I sent you when we first met? (That would be me to John.)

Ohmygosh, I love that poem.

The minute I heard my first love story I started looking for you, not knowing how blind that was. Lovers don’t finally meet somehwere. They’re in each other all along.                                                   – Jalal ad-Din Rumi

Now, where was I?

Oh, yes, the point of this post is that exercise can be the best possible way to break on through. Just let everything else wait and get some endorphins flowing. Even if you think you don’t like exercise, I’ll bet you will eventually.

I’ve continued to do my three-times-a-week baby weights and walking as much as possible, though pollen has driven me to the treadmill (hence the shin thing, I think). But I’ve been slacking on the other days, except for hula hoop breaks, which are good exercise and great for my sanity.

This morning, though, enough was enough. I got my rear in the living room to do a workout DVD, and instead of going with one of my standard faves, popped in a new one, Ivy Ingram Larson’s Full Fitness Fusion.


Whoa. Fun, fun, and fun. A bit Lotte Berke, a bit Pilates, a bit weights, some calisthenics and a tad yoga. Effective and quick. I highly dig it.

(In a previous incarnation, I was a health and fitness columnist. Review copies still come on occasion, which is how I came by this one – and I’m glad I finally got it off the stack.)

Granted, I’m 20+ years older than Larson and her girlfriends in the video, and, granted, I had to adapt for rotator cuff and other issues. I didn’t use weights, since yesterday was a weight day, either. I’ll probably give this one to my daughter, since she’s more Larson’s age range, but this is a great workout for anyone.

Just remember to adapt. I can’t do reverse plank at all, for example, so I did boat pose instead. Probably shouldn’t have done the modified pushups, my right shoulder is saying. But sometimes I can’t help myself.

Larson, who’s married to a surgeon, has MS, which she seems to be controlling nicely with diet and exercise. She and her husband have a very cool and helpful website, cleancuisineandmore.com, which I encourage you to visit for general health tips and more.

And if you’re looking for a fun, quick workout, try this one. I’m smiling. And not whirling for now.

Don’t say I didn’t warn you

Warning: This post does not have a politically correct lead-in. If you don’t have a sense of humor, look away quickly. But it does have a point.

Years ago, before she was an adult but after she was a little kid, Liz asked me, “Mom, why do some old ladies get bifs?”

Huh? I was baffled.

“You know, butts in front. Where they get round in the middle and look the same coming and going.” (Ohh, BIFs. Note to self: Don’t get one!)

I told her I had no idea but that it wasn’t just old women that happened to – it seemed to be an equal-opportunity experience. And it didn’t seem to be just belly fat but a letting go of abdominal muscles.

I just found another great tool for your BIF-prevention kit: Total Body Pilates with Mini Ball with Lisa Hubbard.

The DVD has a 20-minute and a 30-minute workout and comes with a pretty pink ball to use to amp up the intensity. Hubbard’s voice has the effect of a day at the spa, but the workout is too tough for beginners, unless you’re more like my daughter’s age or younger.

The workouts assume a more-than-basic understanding of Pilates, too, so don’t start with this one if you’ve never done any Pilates, preferably with a live instructor. But if you know what you’re doing, this is a great, great workout.

The first time I did the 20-minute workout, my abs were screaming. Not so with the 30-minute, nor today with the 20-minute. In fact, after a morning totin’ grandbabies, the 20-minute routine realigned my spine, though it took a rather scary series of repeated pops during the hip extensions before it settled down.

I’ve had both rotator cuffs repaired, so I have to constantly monitor and adjust with workouts. (Don’t do the push ups! Back away from the mat.) Likewise, at my age, I have a sticky arthritic spot in my low back that won’t lower like a strand of pearls, but I can plop through it.

There’s no shame in adjusting and admitting you can’t do moves. The only shame is in being sedentary if you don’t have to. I love exercise. But even if you don’t, you could grow to love this one.

Again, only if you know Pilates. Otherwise, please don’t say Lolly sent you if you get a copy.