Pro-Active Anti-Aging Tips

Pro-Active Anti-Aging Tips
The River of Life

Friday, September 25, 2015

I’m Overwhelmed- How About You?

This week my blog is short and hopefully sweet. Sometimes it’s good to pull back a little and not push yourself too much. We all get overwhelmed from time to time with commitments; either self-imposed or otherwise. Mine are mostly self-imposed. Aging allows me to identify those self-imposed commitment and then gracefully decline to do them; because I can.  I’m proactive anti-aging by reducing the stress, find the balance and harmony and taking a chill. I’ve earned it.

Doctor Lynn
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Friday, September 18, 2015

Proactive Anti-Aging – It’s Good to be a Slowpoke

This morning I taught two cycle classes back to back. I don’t normally do this, but the gym needed a sub and my students asked me to teach so I said “o-k!”

Now to put this in perspective I’m not a spring chicken. Teaching any kind of exercise class is challenging. With a few years on my side and the intensity of a cycle class teaching two classes back to back is no small feat. But I love teaching and I love the challenge.

After the second class I asked myself if I thought I could teach back to back cycle classes twenty years from now. I’ll be into my eighties, so I doubt I will be teaching cycle unless I develop a senior cycle class focused more on getting on and off the bikes and just moving without intensity. I could play music from the sixties; wear hippie beads and burn patchouli incense. Not such a bad idea!?

Then I had a flashback to twenty years ago. In my forties I doubt I would have been able to teach back to back cycle classes without a few groans and moans. I wouldn’t have known how to pace myself and instead would have burnt myself out trying to prove something. What, I’m not sure, but I do remember in your forties you are trying to prove something; like how many of life’s metals can you pin to your chest?

I’ve got a few metals on my chest, but I’ve also lost and left many good ones behind. That’s o-k.  I made choices and those choices led me to the here and now.

There’s a Crosby Still and Nash song called Slowpoke that has a great line. “When I was faster I was always behind.”   And yes when I was younger I ran so fast that I was always behind. I was always trying to get somewhere not realizing that somewhere was in the moment. Once it’s gone-it’s gone. Now that I’m older, like the song says, I just want to be a slowpoke. I want to embrace the moments. Especially the ones where I feel good and I have lots of energy.

Two cycle classes back to back and I’m now exhausted. I did it to help out and to keep in the good graces of my students and employer. I also made extra money which never goes unappreciated. I think it’s time to relax and may-be call it a day.

“Slowpoke I want to run with you. Wear all your clothes and do what you do. We got some things to find. When I was faster, I way always behind.” Crosby Still and Nash


Doctor Lynn

Friday, September 11, 2015

OMG – My Memory is Slipping! Well May-be Not!

O-kay who hasn’t had one of those OMG moments? Like, I can’t remember the name of that movie I just saw or that song I want to hear. The recall is not as quick as it once was, but the pistons seem to still be firing. We call it getting older. I prefer to think of it as my brain is so full of useful and useless information that it just takes a little longer to shuffle through the files.

Research tells us that contrary to what we think, in some ways our brain improves with age. They call this crystalized intelligence. This is the ability to use your ever growing storage of knowledge, skills and experience for situations as they rise. And guess what? It doesn’t start to peak until your mid-sixties to early seventies!

Crystalized intelligence is not memory, but it is our ability to quickly access our memory, evaluate a situation and apply our knowledge to solve problems and make decisions.

So while younger brains may have speed, older brains are more efficient; meaning they can take shortcuts to solve a problem. We’ve been there and done that before. So we simply reach into our stockpile of information for solutions and take the path of least resistance. This means as we age we’ve been through a lot in life and this allows us to go from one point to the next in a quick and logical manner. We can discern between what is important and what is basically useless in a relatively short amount of time.

There’s a simple term for this; wisdom! So let the young brains run fast. Someday they’ll catch up to us! In the mean time we can just watch them run with the full knowledge that they may be able to create an app a day, but we’ve got crystalize intelligence on our side!

Here’s to the wise!
Doctor Lynn
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Friday, September 4, 2015

Karma Lesson – Gravity’s a Bitch!

Take care of your health because with each passing decade it’s a little harder to stay fit. What you do today will be realized tomorrow. That’s Karma and like gravity it is a bitch to fight!

From the moment we stand upright gravity is pulling us down. When we’re young and growing the force of life defies gravity, but as we age gravity defies us. That is why I love inverted yoga poses. They change the force of gravity by changing the flow of blood away from pooling at the lower body and back towards the upper body.

The effects of gravity don’t really matter until that first day you look down and your ankles are beginning to swell. You look up and you see the skin beneath your jaw line beginning to sag. It’s an OMG moment!

Inversions like all things in life should be done with a bit of caution. There are certain contraindications that should be observed so as not to make things worse, such as high blood pressure, some heart conditions, neck injuries, recent strokes, detached retina, glaucoma and epilepsy. Talk with your doctor before starting yoga if you have any of these or other concerns.

Here are a few reasons why you might want to do inversions:

Improve your facial skin and hair. There are reasons why our skin gets dry and our hair gets limp as we age. One of the reasons is gravity. Bodily fluids such as nutrient rich blood and oxygen get distributed throughout the body via the heart. But upright the heart has to work over time to pump up to the head. An inversion makes the work easier and allows nutrient rich blood and oxygen to bathe the upper body. Remember with Karma; life becomes what life does. We can direct our energy to create anything we desire. So upside down in a forward bend we go and our skin and hair will thank us.

 Inversions improve immunity by assisting the lymphatic system. Your lymphatic system is a key player in keeping you healthy.  It moves through your body picking up toxins and bacteria and eliminating them. Because lymph moves as a result of movement and gravity, getting upside down allows lymph to move more easily to the respiratory system (your lungs) where many toxins enter the body.

Inversions shunt more blood to the brain which both invigorates us physically and brings mental vitalization. Got the four o’clock slump? Get upside down and breathe!

Inversions calm the nervous system thereby bringing calmness and balance to our mental processing.

Inversions improve body balance. They work the core muscles, as well as, our equilibrium to improve our sense of balance.

Literally inversions give us a new perspective on life. We all react to our world in predictable ways. We spend most of our life being upright or laying down. Inversions teach us that there are other ways to deal with life’s situations. Sometimes, as Jimmy Buffett put it,” a change in latitude, a change in attitude, nothing remains quite the same.”

Inversions make us feel playful and playfulness makes us feel young. When was the last time you hung upside down from a monkey bar? They remind us that although yoga is a contemplative practice it can also be fun.

Some great inversions to try are down dog, standing forward bend and legs against the wall. If you really want to challenge yourself try shoulder stand and head stands. Make sure you do these with the help of a teacher.

Whatever you do try tipping gravity upside down on its head and take a look at life from a different perspective. It will keep you open and flexible and that is one of the secrets to staying young! So take an upside down proactive approach to aging!     

Doctor Lynn

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