We are all getting older.
That is not meant to bum anyone out; it’s actually very good news. Recent data show that the U.S. population’s average life expectancy is now 78.6 years, over three years more than 20 years ago; and it is estimated that, by the year 2030, those 65 years old and above will account for about 20% of all Americans. People 85 years of age and older now represent the fastest-growing subgroup in the U.S. and the number of centenarians continues to grow as well.
As I approach my 45th birthday (I KNOW!) and reflect on the past year with some of my DishWithDina clients, I noticed that one major lesson we all have been learning is that success lies not only in having a plan, but sticking with that plan consistently. When we prepare in advance both our food and our physical activity, we make healthier choices overall. With that in mind, it will be extremely easy to embrace the years ahead of us, and, as we further develop our routines and incorporate better habits in our lives, we will surely have healthful and successful futures.
The best thing we can do to slow or minimize some of the inevitable physiologic changes that will come with aging—like loss of sensory perception, gastrointestinal function, and body composition—is, of course, to always keep moving. Incorporating aerobic activity, muscle strengthening, and flexibility and balance exercises on a daily basis will help us achieve longevity and quality of life.
That said, I’ve been pretty stagnant this past week—gearing up for a new school semester is exhausting—and a few conversations recently have made me realize I haven’t been practicing what I preach when it comes to regular activity. So, I hereby declare that I shall get back on that track henceforth and hope you’ll renew your sure-to-be-stale-by-now fitness resolutions with me.
I guess what I’m asking is, be my workout buddy, won’t you?
Here’s to the future…and beyond!