Set Your Pace; Retirement Comes With Fitness Challenges and Opportunities

This will be my last blog post, because I’m having a “senior moment.”

No, I didn’t forget my ATM PIN, nor find my car keys in the refrigerator cheese drawer. I just mean I’m transitioning to the next phase in my life — retirement.

That’s how I define a “senior moment”… one of the positive milestones we achieve after the half-century mark. And each “senior moment” milestone comes with its own rewards and challenges.

I used to walk across the Atlantic Ocean once a week. I was a Pan Am stewardess, and that job kept me fit without any extra effort. But when I quit flying and transitioned to a “normal” 9-to-5 office job, the decrease in physical activity quickly led to an unwanted weight gain.

Those of us in sedentary jobs have to make time to be physically active. We develop clever ways to motivate ourselves to exercise after a long day’s work — even when all we really want to do is sit down and have dinner.

But the rewards in increased health and longevity are worth the effort. As we often heard in a popular saying from the early ’60s, “Today is the first day of the rest of your life.”

A four-week series on explored that idea. Here’s an excerpt from the introduction to Baby boomers coming of age and setting the pace:

In 2011, the first of the baby boom generation will reach what used to be known as retirement age. And for the next 18 years, boomers will be turning 65 at a rate of about 8,000 a day. As this unique cohort grows older, it will likely transform the institutions of aging — just as it has done to other aspects of American life. Will boomers redefine this life stage, or will it redefine them?

Are you approaching retirement? Or maybe you’ve already reached that milestone.  How has it affected your health and physical activity? Many of us are seizing the opportunity to redefine retirement with treadmills and kayaks instead of rocking chairs.

What will you do in “retirement” to say forever young?

Photo credit: wallyg

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Read 2 Comments

  1. I have been retired from the public schools for a year and a half and have finally gotten most of my health issues under control!  Now I’m back on a regular exercise schedule, am attending Weight Watchers weekly and am ready to go back to the gym after Christmas when I can afford it!  Life is good during retirement.

  2. Thank you, Eve, for your many years of service educating our public school students.  And, thanks for inspiring us all to embrace retirement as an opportunity to improve our health for the rest of our lives.  Your venue has changed, but you’re still teaching valuable lessons for us all. 

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