A while back I started writing about lifestyle changes I've made since I retired from daily newspapering: A new diet, low on sugar and salt, no red meat, high in vegetables, fruits, fish, nuts, Greek yogurt (frozen and not), and vitamin supplements. I've also started a regular (more or less) exercise/workout regimen. I feel, look and am a lot healthier than when I embarked on the changes.
I've also discovered something about life: There is no statute of limitations on it offering stuff for which I have no love. For example, I used to hate trigonometry. I could do it, but who decided we needed it? Also, I was not a fan of creamed spinach. Whose idea was that?
I don't hate either anymore because I don't have anything to do with them anymore. In college, I decided (with the strong suggestion of a faculty adviser) to pursue writing as a career instead of engineering. So I retired my slide rule (remember them?), abandoned sines, cosines and tangents, and plugged in my electric typewriter (remember them?) to focus on spelling, punctuation and good grammar (please remember them).
Creamed spinach was a non-starter at our first encounter. I hated it. Today, however, raw or sauteed spinach is welcome in my diet.
Today, I have something else to hate: Squats.
For the uninformed (or possibly out-of-shape), that's a physical exercise, not a vegetable. If you can only do one exercise, I'm told, squats are the one to do because they work so many different muscles. The added muscle strength helps protect against injury from falls. Squats also improve balance, which decreases the likelihood of falls. For the record, one-third of those over the age of 65 falls each year, and falls are the leading cause of death due to injury among seniors.
That's why my fitness coach keeps telling me to do squats. Yes, I have a fitness coach, another step in my evolution from layabout slug to septuagenarian with his eye on 100. She's also my partner. Once a week my partner/coach and I do an hour-and-half weight-training regimen: Dumbbells, weight machines, rollouts and squats. (I'm not overly fond of rollouts either, but let's stick to squats for now.) The dumbbells have slowly increased in weight with time and with my development of some actual muscle.
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