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It Has Nothing To Do With Age provides self-help principles. The inspirational stories give concrete illustrations of overcoming many of life's challenges. Difficulties pertaining to depression, grief, divorce, and death are presented and worked through by the participants. Physical impairments, injuries, overcoming issues with weight, alcohol, and nicotine are also dealt with and resolved by the athletes.

This book provides a model on how to overcome some of the difficulties that confront all of us . Further, this read sheds a beacon of light on preventive measures for good physical and mental health. Research demonstrates that exercise is an important component in treating such ailments and debilitating illness such as depression, stroke, heart disease, brain or cognitive malfunction,and Alzheimer's disease.

I suggest that proper exercise can be used as a preventive measure for psychological, cognitive, and physical health as well. Follow my prescription and lead a better, more fulfilling, and healthier life.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Use Your Brain And Stretch

"I just kept on doing what everyone starts out doing. The real question is, why did other people stop?"– William Stafford

Per Secretariat’s recent post: I agree with Secretariat that Donna Fitzgerald’s horse had a fantastic run in the 70s on the Tevis Cup. Let’s forget that the trail course has changed over the years and the mileage may be different than it is today. Remember,  Secretariat posted “riding time” not the entire race time that both Donna  and her horse  were on the trail  from start to finish ( in other words, the  horse gets to be  massaged, blanketed, talk ed to, given its favorite  goodies-carrots , oats LMF etc., pampered , electrolytes, water, sponged down, saddle removed  and the rider gets to eat and rest  while the crew takes over) . In fact, on my Tevis ride at Forest Hill, I basically handed my reins to Secretariat and I did the same thing at the finish. It’s also true, that on my Western States run, Secretariat and Debbie met me at Robie Point and accompanied me to finish. Thinking back, my horse Raider got more attention and hampering from them than   I got.

From Secretariat: We don't have forget that the trail has changed it was tougher when Donna did it!!
If you want to add two hrs to her time you can the horse was still faster. Now your complaining we didn't take good enough care of you on the run.
Today’s second point is the following: in training for endurance and ride and tie, I rode Running Bear, Raider and Gypsy about 50 miles a week (rides of 16, 9 and 25 miles) .Starting at the end of 2001 I have run 50 to 60 miles per week till now except during this past September, October and the first part of November when I was rehabbing my Achilles. This past week I’m back on track and totaled 50 miles for the last two weeks. Sadly, none of my 3 horses are competing or totaling 50 miles per week. Further, Secretariat did quite well (10 Tevis buckles) on his super horses. Guess what? He is still competing while they are simply pooping and eating. The fact - both of us are still out there running on the trail and entering events while our horses are not says something about human toughness.  Do you agree?  In any event, make sure you watch for Secretariat’s counter point.  Some secrets about human toughness follow.
 Even though our bodies make changes we age, it means that we need to get smarter about exercising. Certainly tendons, muscles, joints and reaction times change and we don’t bounce back from injury as quickly.  However, following are ideas to help avoid getting injured during exercise. Don’t forget that exercise can help prevent Alzheimer’s, protect against stroke, increase  life expectancy, and even change your DNA so your  muscles work more  efficiently.
Consider the following ideas: 1. Ease into exercise-make sure you warm up your muscles to raise their temperature before you stress them. Before my runs, I walk ½ to 1 mile and so does Secretariat. 2. Target your middle as muscles in your core as this is the fulcrum around which all other muscles in your body pivot. Consider doing a plank for 30 seconds, rest, and repeat. When I was doing this exercise, I was getting close to holding this position for five minutes. 3. The squat  is the best single exercise to prevent injury and maintain leg and lower back strength-squat until your thighs are  parallel to the ground and rise slowly and repeat up to 20 times. 4. Increase your balance by standing on one leg a few times a day holding for 20 seconds and then switch legs. Also .stand on something to make your feet surface is uneven and even do the exercise with your eyes closed. 5. Stretch your Achilles by leaning against a wall with one  leg extended behind you on the ground and hold for 30 seconds. Slightly bend your knee in the extended leg and hold for another 30 seconds and then switch legs. During my Achilles rehab I  perform these exercise three times a day and even stop during my runs to stretch and  again especially after my trail runs ( I stretch even if it does slower my running times because   it has helped me deal with the discomfort) . 6. Strengthen your shoulders by grasping both ends of an elastic tube and pulling the tubing apart. This exercise can be repeated five times.
 I will post additional stretching ideas later in the week.  In the meantime remember to keep moving and run for your life.


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