Jan 052020

Many people start a new year, making a resolution to exercise more. And that’s a very smart decision because regular exercise can do a lot to improve your health and mental outlook. What works for me and for many is to choose enjoyable activities. If it’s fun, you’re more like to keep doing it, right?

My passion is for the water and so most days, I can’t wait to get in the water! I walk down to the Sea of Cortez and savor my swimming experience for an hour, sometimes longer. Whether in the pool or the sea or ocean, I love the feel of the water rushing by me, the feel of propelling myself through the water. I like the solitude, the silence, the escape that I experience, which helps me clear my head of clutter and distress.

I love the multisensory experience sea swimming – smelling and tasting the salt, spotting sardines, sea bass, and stingrays – and on the most amazing days, encountering my dolphin friends. There’s a pod of 11 or more bottle-nose dolphins who often propel themselves underneath me with their powerful flukes or glid around me, sometimes in circles. Occasionally, a dolphin friend will come up nose to nose and nod or even make sounds for me. Clicks, chirps, and other calls.

The photo here is of me finishing an 1800-meter swim this past September in Miramar, near Guaymas, Mexico. Click here to see a short YouTube video clip of me wetsuit swimming. Water temperatures vary from the mid-50s F up to the low-90s, depending on the season, so I rang in the New Year wetsuit swimming since the water is quite chilly in the winter, even south of the border in San Carlos, Mexico.

Finding enjoyable exercise is one of many helpful recommendations I offer in my Fitter Than Ever at 40 and Beyond book. Stop making resolutions and quitting them two weeks later and embark on a journey of healthy living. Let 2020 be the year you succeed! If you haven’t read Fitter Than Ever yet, click here to pick up a paperback or here for the Kindle edition.

Mar 242010

Susan Dawson-Cook in 2009 Tinfoilman TriathlonPeople are always asking me about the latest 5 minute exercise plan and wondering if it will be the magic bullet to help them lose weight without time and effort. If you don’t believe the latest guidelines from the American College of Sports Medicine (which say 300-400 minutes of aerobic activity per week is necessary for most people to lose weight), an Associated Press release, published in today’s (Wednesday, March 24) Arizona Daily Star, should get your attention.

Research on more than 13,000 middle-aged American women over a 13 year period showed an average weight gain of 6 pounds over the 13 year period, including those who were on calorie-cutting diet plans. Participants who gained little or no weight during this time (only 13 percent) consistently exercised an average of an hour a day.

What this means for you? If you’re a female over 40, start blocking out 60 minutes a day to exercise (and then get out there and do it) or be prepared to fight a losing battle with the bulge. I’m over 40 by a long shot and I’m doing it. With a little discipline and determination, so can you!