Georgia Golden Olympics | Warner Robins GA

Georgia Golden Olympics
Warner Robins GA

This past week I went down to Warner Robins GA to the Georgia Golden Olympics games to participate in the 1500 meter race walk in hopes of qualifying for the National Senior Games in Minneapolis MN in July 2015.

The Georgia Golden Olympics are held every year in September down in the middle Georgia city of Warner Robins, home of Robins Airbase.

This year those who participate and come in at the top four positions qualify for the National Senior Games which are only held every other year. 2014 is the qualifying year at the state level for the 2015 National Senior Games.

We only spend Thursday PM and left Friday PM but did get to see several events.

On Thursday our first stop was the Warner Robins Senior Activity Center where we registered and saw the list of people who would be competing in my event on Friday. We got a T-shirt and other items in a welcome package.

Next we headed over to Robins High School’s McConnell-Talbert Stadium on nearby S. Davis Drive where a lot of the Track and Field events were being held.

Track and Fields Events
Track and Fields Events

We spent some time watching the high jump where both male and female contests had a friendly but competitive match. It amazed me how high they were jumping.  I saw more than a few ace bandages and ice packs.

High Jumpers at Georgia Golden Olympics
High Jumpers at Georgia Golden Olympics

I got to check out the impressive track where I would be race walking the next day.

On Friday morning I got up early and was one of the first ones to arrive at the stadium for Jim Norvill’s race walking seminar.

Jim Norvill Race Walk Clinc
Jim Norvill Race Walk Clinc

I stayed to watch and photograph the 5K race walk. There were about 11 contestants ranging from seasoned veterans to a new comer or two.

5K Race Walk - Georgia Golden Olympics
5K Race Walk – Georgia Golden Olympics

These race walkers really put a lot in to the contest which is about 3.1 miles or little over 12 times around the track. Several of the same race walkers would be coming back at 1pm for the 1500 meter race walk that I had signed up for.

Race Walkers pass by Judge Jim Norvill
Race Walkers pass by Judge Jim Norvill

I stopped by the Senior Activity Center again to check things out and met Ms. Vicki Pilgrim who was directing these games and doing an excellent job keeping track of so many things going on with the events and people.

After picking up my wife Mary Ann, checking out of the Hampton Inn on Watson Blvd and getting a bite to eat,  we headed over to the stadium to watch the 100 meter dash. I ran in to a fellow I had met back in Alpharetta training at the Old Milton High School.  He is 80 years old and had won the 50 meter dash the day before and I watched him win the gold in the 100 meter race too.  He did it faster than I could have and I am only a baby at age 68. He’s the gentleman at the top right in while shirt in the photo below.

100 Meters Race at Georgia Senior Games
100 Meters Race at Georgia Senior Games

Mary Ann’s brother Mike and wife Diane were nice enough to come watch me compete at 1pm in the 1500 race walk. I was uncertain as to how it would be going since I had only been race walking for two months and had hurt my hip a week before.  I did good and came in second in my age group winning the silver and qualifying myself for the National Senior Games. I think I may just make the trip to Minnesota for the National’s next year.

Robert Fowler Silver Medal 1500M Race Walk
Robert Fowler Silver Medal 1500M Race Walk

While getting my medal engraved back at the senior activity center I stood in line with other medal winners and we shared our excitement and stories.  One lady (pictured below) had won several medals in shot put, discuss, race walking and others and is also planning on going to the nationals.

Medal winner Georgia Golden Olympics
Medal winner Georgia Golden Olympics

 

“Others won medals in swimming, cycling, golf, pickleball, basketball, table tennis and horseshoes.”

We made the ride back to Atlanta tired but happy that I had won a medal. I would have loved to stay longer and participated in and viewed more of the competitions. Maybe next year I will stay two nights instead of one.

The registration is not open yet for the Nationals but when they do open this Fall, I will be planning my trip. This will be a great incentive for me to continue my race walking hobby and really improve my technique,  speed and endurance.  I plan to enter the 1500 meters and the 5K race walks. They are on two consecutive days so that will work out fine.

I have been to Minneapolis before to attend a conference but my wife never has been there. Attending the Nationals will be a good excuse to have a vacation getaway for us.

For more information on the National’s, visit their web site at National Senior Games Association.  For more information on Race Walking, visit Jim Norvill’s excellent site eRaceWalk.com.

Boomers Participate in Senior Games

1500M medal winners all categories
1500M medal winners all categories

Originally posted 2014-09-21 22:33:55.

When Illness Strikes Are You Prepared?

When illness strikes it can be swiftly and without warning. This can be devastating if you are not prepared. When one is not feeling well it is more difficult to think and respond as one should. How many of us though really take the time to set up small things in our lives that help us when something happens unexpectedly?

Preparation for Illness

When illness strikes it can be swiftly and without warning.  This can be devastating if you are not prepared.   When one is not feeling well it is more difficult to think and respond as one should.  How many of us though really take the time to set up small things in our lives that help us when something happens unexpectedly?

I have read where boomers are living longer.  Some are living alone.  Some may not have near by relatives or friends that can be there for them on a minutes notice.  Some times we may just need to prepare small things for ourselves in order to deal and carry out our own responsibilities as they happen.

Our thinking can effect our life situations and how we feel.   Do we think positive for positive results?  Are we prepared when our thinking might not be at its best until we have time to recover? In skilled nursing homes, hospitals and rehabilitation centers, professionals work with patients to help them think and prepare.  Maybe it would be good to focus on just a few of these things today. Also if one is fortunate to have a person to assist them then having these things done in advance could also make it much easier for another to assist us.

  1. Do you have a full bottle of an over the counter pain reliever in your medicine cabinet at all times?
  2. Do you have plenty of liquids in your home that might go easy on your stomach if it gets a little upset?
  3. Do you know that it is better to take most medicines after eating a little something to keep the medications from upsetting your stomach?
  4. Do you know that ice is for swelling?  Do you know when to use ice or heat?
  5. Do you have a small first aid kit available?
  6. Do you have a small bag packed with small necessities such as tooth brush, a change of night clothing, brush, comb, or any small items that you use on a daily basis?
  7. Do you have a list of your medications written down with the dosages in case you have to go to the Dr. or a hospital?
  8. Do you have your insurance cards in a place where you can find them easily?
  9. Do you know that in addition to a co pay some insurances have an out of pocket expense to be met before the insurance company starts paying.  Some physicians offices and hospitals require this to be paid prior to non life treating emergencies before treatment?
  10. Do you have an advanced directive written which is also called a living will in case you are unable to speak for yourself?
  11. Do you have a list of phone numbers written down in case your cell phone has lost its charge and your numbers are in it?  This will include your Dr.,relatives, hospital, employer, fire dept, police and etc.
  12. Do you keep Popsicles, small cups of pudding, jello,canned soup,ice cream and etc. on hand instead of having to run to the grocery store if you get sick in the middle of the night or there is a snow storm outside?
  13. Do you keep enough gasoline in your tank in case you have to leave your home quickly and do not have the time to stop to fill your tank?
  14. If you have a pet is there enough pet food in your home to feed that pet for a few days?
  15. If you have a neighbor that you feel comfortable enough with, have you asked for their phone number and written it down in case of an emergency?
  16. Do you have an extra spare car and home key hidden somewhere?
  17. Do you really know how to put a large pill in your mouth to swallow so that you do not risk choking?  What would you do if you were alone and found that you were choking?
  18. If you wear glasses do you have a set of readers or a spare set of regular glasses somewhere in case yours break?  I would be up a creek if I had to drive or read without my glasses.
  19. When the electric goes out and there is no television but there is light, do you have some fun magazines, books, and etc. to keep yourself entertained until the electric has been restored?
  20. Have you ever put off doing the laundry until there is no more clean underwear?  What if you get sick and need a clean pair?
  21. Have you ever been late for something and the button just popped off your favorite shirt?  Do you have a needle and tread handy?
  22. Do you have new batteries in the flashlight by your night stand?  A flash light will do no good if the batteries do not work you know.
  23. Do you always have enough toilet paper on hand or do you get down to your last roll?
  24. Do you have an umbrella in your car and your home?  It does little good if your umbrella is in the car when you need to get to the car?
  25. Do you have an ice scraper and boots for that unexpected snow?
  26. Oh and how about a fly swat or old newspaper for that spider on the wall or the fly that flew in while the door was open.
  27. Do you keep inexpensive baking soda in your refrigerator?  It also has many many other purposes other that as a refrigerator fresher.
  28. Do you have a bottle of vinegar?  It too can be used for many different things.  Just read up on vinegar as a cleaning agent.
  29. Did you know that an infected tooth can carry infection to your heart which could result in death? Other wards keep your appointments for your dental check ups.
  30. Did you know there are many foods that can help lower blood pressure and others that increases blood pressure?  What are some of those foods?  Are you eating them?

Does any of this apply to you?  Have you really taken the time to think and prepare for the unexpected?  How well are you prepared to take care of yourself?”  Just keeping things as simple as we can and being prepared for the little things can make our lives a lot less stressful, don’t you think? As human beings we want to meet life’s challenges with our BEST thinking and preparation.  As we do this we move forward from simple to better, and negative to positive thinking. This enables us to be our best self and seek out the best in others. So again why not prepare so that when our brain may be a little weary we can let it rest a bit and feel the comfort of knowing that we are prepared to take care of ourselves.

Originally posted 2011-01-17 17:44:14.

Boomers Juicing For Weight Loss

Boomers Get Healthy By Juicing

My eyes were opened to the benefits of juicing about a year and a half ago when I tried it and lost weight about 30 pounds. What turned me on to this was three things occurring at once in my life:
-Read the book Younger Next Year
-Saw the documentary movie Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead by Joe Cross
-A Whole Foods store with juice bar opened in my neighborhood.

I wrote about this in Sept 2012 with Baby Boomers Health: 12 Tips For Old Guys

wheatgrass juiceI started off with a shot of wheatgrass every day. Wheatgrass has the enzymes of grass that really helps your digestive system and provides nutriments. Then I supplemented that with the Green Machine, a mixture of apples, kale, celery, cucumbers, cilantro and lime.

By the way the picture below is wheatgrass that I grew from seed growing on my deck. It grows easily but it is a process to juice it so I just stop by a juice bar instead.

Many boomers are tired of getting big and fat as they age.  They are turning to juicing and nutriment drinks to supplement lighter eating and loosing weight in the process.

Then maintaining their weight loss by continuing this healthy lifestyle.  It is worth it.

How to Juice

1. Consult some books and web sites, then buy a juicer and get started. Tons of books like The Juicing Bible by Pat Crocker or web sites like Joe Cross has.  I got the Breville juicer like Joe Cross recommended and have been happy with it.

2. If you live close to a Whole Foods store with juice bar then by all means start there.  Mix it up with trying out several drinks like Green Lemonade, Green Machine and The Mommy Boost.

3. I wouldn’t recommend doing all juicing and no food.  I would start by having one green type drink everyday and let that supplement a light meal, say for lunch. Practicing portion control while juicing will do the trick!

4. Give juicing a try and stay the course until you get used to it.  After a while you will like it and love the results especially. It will become part of your better life.

5. A friend told me about the Nutribullet and we just got one. It  is smaller than a large juicer and it pretty well blends up all ingredients to their most nutritious state,  so there is no wasted pulp.  It has worked for my friend.  It’s cheaper too as the name brand one is about $100 but Costco and Walmart have cheaper models. We went with the name brand as we didn’t see the cheaper ones until later, but who knows?

6. Use fresh ingredients when possible or use frozen. The main thing is that ingredients are uncooked.

Weight loss and maintaining your weight loss is probably the most important thing you can do to improve your health as you age. Weight loss and staying active with exercise is a great duo that will improve your life. Maybe my next post will be about how to exercise.

Boomer Loosing Weight After 50
Healthy Eating Tips
Boomers Health Issues

Originally posted 2013-12-05 23:42:01.

Eye Strain And Ways To Deal With It

Eye strain is uncomfortable but we must continue to look for ways to continue to learn, relax, work, and play without allowing eye stain to deter us from doing the things that we need to do. As wise boomers, we will find the ways to deal with eye stain and any other obstacles that we need to overcome!

Some people suffer from eye strain.  Eye strain is defined as anything that causes discomfort while viewing something.  Your eyes become fatigued due to over use of eye muscles.  One can develop eye strain from reading, using computers, and driving.  My job requires that I  drive during the night shift which is a defiant source of eye strain.  As one ages our eye sight appears to not be as good as it use to be, therefore it is important to use every resource possible to take care of our eyes.

We must go for our periodic eye exams which may require that we wear glasses or contact lens.    Eye glasses are available with glare proof coating and tint.  There are many types of lubricants and eyes drops on the market that will help to ease the discomfort.  An eye specialist can recommend what is best for each individual.  Also there are computer screen devices that can be used to decrease glare.  Sunglasses are very helpful during the daylight hours.

But what about those of us that have to drive and use computers to make a living?  At the end of a day or night our eyes are stained.  If we like to read, watch television, or use the computer we are setting ourselves up for even more eye strain.  I have found that driving while it is raining irritates my eyes due to the glare on the streets.  Watching television has become very difficult due to the glare.  Unfortunately eye strain can interfere with many of the activities that we like to do during our relaxation time.  As a boomer, reading, writing, watching television and using the computer are things that I enjoy doing.  As with many other things, I have had to search out alternative methods to continue to enjoy things that I use to do.  Here are a few ways that I deal with eye strain.

  1. Reading is very difficult with eye strain.  There are many audio books at the library.  Amazon.com. has a wide variety of audio books for purchase. While driving one can put the CD in the car Cd player and continue to learn.  I found this very helpful during a heavy rain storm recently.  It was very enlightening to listen to the audio book, The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle, while continuing my night driving during the storm.
  2. While using the computer, I find it helpful to take breaks away from the screen frequently to relax my eyes.  I can save my material then go back to it for completion.  It is a good time to use the eye drops and lubricants that are available.
  3. When I intend to watch a good movie on television, I find it helpful to wait until I have rested my eyes for a few hours.  Sometimes it helps to put a cold wash cloth across my eyes and just relax them for awhile.
  4. Getting the proper sleep also helps with eye strain.  When using an I pad it is good to increase the writing for easier viewing.
  5. Also there is the age old magnifying glass that is useful for reading fine print.

Eye strain is uncomfortable but we must continue to look for ways to continue to learn, relax, work, and play without allowing eye strain to deter us from doing the things that we need to do.  As wise boomers, we will find the ways to deal with eye strain and any other obstacles that we need to overcome!

Originally posted 2011-03-03 07:50:42.

Boomers Recovering From A Serious Illness Alone

Boomers recovering from a servious Illness alone may benefit from these tips.

There are many Boomers that live alone and may not have close family or friends.  When an illness strikes, such as heart surgery, they may find it difficult to do a lot of things that normally would be routine.  This happened to me this year.  I am going to share the things that I learned from my own personal experience.

  1. It is important to keep a , I can do this, positive attitude.
  2. Do not over do because you are recovering.  Follow your doctors orders but do not give up.
  3. You may find that some people that you thought would be there for you, are not there.  Try not to let this interfere with your recovery.  Thinking about it or stressing out will only make it more difficult for you to do the things that you can.  Keep a forgiving attitude.  Everyone has reasons for what they do.  Remember that you are number one while recovering.
  4. Take rest periods as needed.
  5. Play relaxing music to DE-stress.
  6. When you are able,per your doctor’s orders, walk.  Every little bit helps.  Yes, it may hurt but eventually the pain will leave and you will recovery much faster.  Do all the exercises that the hospital personnel that instructed you to do.  It will hurt but do it!  You will be weak but this is how you get better.  If there is a problem do not hesitate to call your physician.
  7. If you know in advance, stock up on healthy foods that are easy to prepare.  If it is a sudden thing like a heart attack, you might want to call your senior center and have meals on wheels delivered to your home.
  8. Have a safety device rail in your bath tub area.  A shower chair also will help.  When you are able to bath, you will not have the strength that you once had to get out of the tub.  It is important not to slip, so be careful.
  9. If you have a cell phone, make sure you have it with you at all times.  Should you fall or need help dial 911 immediately.
  10. Organize your medicines so that you do not forget to take them at the correct times.  Your thinking may not be as alert as it was before the illness and it is very important to take those medicines correctly.
  11. Do not drive until the doctor says that it is okay.  Remember, it is not only your life in danger but the life of others on the road.
  12. If you are not suppose to lift, a lot of task such as laundry, grocery shopping, cleaning house and etc. may be difficult for you for awhile.  A nice rolling cart with wheels makes it much easier to carry bags and laundry.  Keep a disinfectant spray on hand.  If you find in difficult to change your bedding as you did before, use the spray,as long as your bedding is not soiled.  Just make sure everything is sanitary.  Alcohol can also be used to wipe over things.  Be careful with alcohol.  You do not want it to get into open wounds.  WASH YOUR HANDS ALL THE TIME!
  13. Have the proper soaps to use at home, such as Dial without perfume.  You do not want to get your wound infected.  Use that Soap and Water!
  14. Use heat and ice for minor pain.  Your doctor can instruct you on which to use.  Take your pain medications if needed.  Do not mix over the counter medicines with prescription medicines without informing your doctor.  This could have serious side effects.  Your doctor will know when it is time for you to stop taking prescription pain relievers.  Do your exercises and etc. so that you are prepared for this time when it happens.
  15. You may find that you are weak. Picking up items that you drop may be difficult.  Believe it or not, I used spaghetti tongs to pick up small things.  Hey, it worked for me.  Be creative and figure out new ways to do things that will keep you from stressing or being overly tired.  Paper plates worked well too. I did not have to stand long periods of time at the sink washing dishes.  Then there is that dreaded full trash can that needs to go to dumpster.  Instead of waiting until it is full,  fill it half full.  Then when the weather is nice, use this as an excuse to walk.  Oh and by the way, I dragged it instead of carrying.  It worked!
  16. When you find yourself getting frustrated, which you will, sit down, close your eyes, count and deep breath.  Everything will be okay.  It just takes time and a new way of doing things.  Pat yourself on the back and say at -ta boy or girl.  Do not give up! Remember, there are others, such as myself, that have had to do it alone too.
  17. Hopefully, you will have some great reading material near you.  If you have access to a computer then use it!  There are many support groups on line such as Heart Sisters; the one that I joined.  Use your FB friends as much as you need to use them.  They might not be there in person but it sure feels good to know that they care.  My FB friends gave me so much encouragement.  I am so grateful for them.
  18. Share at your doctors office.  If he does not have time to be supportive or caring then you might want to consider looking for another physician, depending upon your given circumstance.  Take full advantage of what your insurance company has to offer if you have medical insurance.  Some offer physical therapy, rehabilitation, visiting nurses, sitters and etc.  Use them if needed!
  19. If you are employed, it will do no good to sit at home worrying about when you can get back to work.  I know times are rough.  I was there myself.  Take the necessary time to heal before going back to work.  I must admit, I did not do this.  Now I am having to do some of the things that I should have done before starting back to a full time job.  You might be thinking,”Yes, this is easier said than done. I need a pay check.”  I understand, I did too.  Now I regret not fully getting well before going back to work.  Even though Dave Ramsey says, tear up those credit cards, I believe that sometimes a person needs one.  When my emergency fund ran out, I used the credit card.  Being frugal is good but doing without the necessary things that you need when sick is NOT  the time to save money.  Your life is much more important than money.  When you are well then you can work and pay that credit card off.  It is working for me!
  20. If you have a pet while sick love on it.  Pets seem to have a way of knowing when you need love too.  No, they are not human, but wow, are they great company!
  21. Now for the big one that is difficult for some of us to do; ask for help.  I know you might get rejected then again you might not.  Ask the grocery man to carry your groceries to the car.  Let him return the cart.  Let the neighbor help you with that door.  Make it an opportunity to meet a neighbor and get their phone number.  You might need to use it and in addition you might get a time later on down the line to return the favor.  You might even make a friend. If you have a place where you worship, sometimes they are willing to help.  Ask, Ask and use that telephone and computer.  It does not mean that you are a weak person because you ask for help.  Always thank the person or send them a thank you card.  Actually doing something for you is not only helping you but is a way that they are being rewarded by giving.

Take time to adjust to being alone and enjoying it.  Let things go if you are tired.  It will get done when you feel better.  Take this time to pamper and love yourself.  You will find that when you come out of all of this that you will be a much stronger person than you were before.  At that time then tell your story.  Help someone else.  That is how it works.  Do not give up hope,  Each day that you try gives you one more chance to be an inspiration to others in the journey of life.

I heard something that inspired me a few weeks while watching the television program NCIS, by Gibbs.  He said, “Family is more than just DNA.  It’s about people that care and and take care of each other.”  Boomers, we are family!  Reach out and touch someone today.  Your aloneness will be less and your awards greater!  Be good to yourself!  By giving you will receive!

Originally posted 2011-10-22 16:31:49.

Boomers: Losing Weight After 50

Losing weight after 50 tips: Simple sugars, like the infamous whites (white rice, white bread, etc.) are known trigger foods. But did you know that some fruits can be a problem too, because of the fructose content? You still need fruits as part of a healthy diet; just choose fruits higher in fiber.

Weight Loss After Age 50

What’s so hard about losing weight after 50? From the commercials and ads you’ve on TV and in magazines, it looks like it ought to be easy enough. Just take this wonder pill and you’re trim practically overnight.You probably already know – getting rid of that extra weight isn’t that easy! If it really was, you’d be slim already, right?

But there is good news — it is possible to lose weight after you’re 50 (or even 60). You just need a different strategy. Your body is adjusting and re-adjusting to aging, and weight loss probably won’t happen quickly (sorry).

The Menopause Factor and Weight Loss

What can you do about it? Weight loss after (and during, for that matter) menopause is harder now than it was at any other time during your life. Maybe you could lose 10 pounds fairly easily, now three pounds seems like an impossible goal.

Realize that your hormones are working against you; you therefore need to take charge of your diet and cut out foods that spell trouble for you.

Simple sugars, like the infamous whites (white rice, white bread, etc.) are known trigger foods. But did you know that some fruits can be a problem too, because of the fructose content? You still need fruits as part of a healthy diet; just choose fruits higher in fiber.

Here’s one you’ve heard before, but it’s still true — don’t skip meals. It spells trouble when your blood sugar falters, as it makes you more likely to snack.

Bones that are frailer bones, muscle loses mass and you metabolism goes south; and there are still issues. For example, you may have stress bladder problem and your body loses flexibility as well.

Losing Weight After 50 Tips

It seems like you’ve got the deck stacked against you, doesn’t it? Is there anything you can do to help with losing weight after 50?

If you’re eating a balanced diet, exercise is the next most important thing you can do. Without it, your bones will continue to become frailer and your muscles continue to weaken. This weakening, and accompanying loss of mass, means it will be even harder to lose weight!

You don’t need to worry about walking miles or heavy cardio routines; in fact they may hurt more than help at first. Even if you should have mobility problems, you most likely can still work with hand weights, wrist weights and/or resistance bands. These help to re-build muscle mass, and therefore increase your metabolism.

Yes, it’s possible to lose weight after 50, and you can do it. It’s just a matter of taking it one day at a time, and know that with every pound you lose, you’re increasing your health!

Originally posted 2013-12-10 08:36:51.