by Lois Jamieson
When Phoebe and I started talking about our book, The Humor, Perils and Joys of Aging, I read everything I could get my hands on looking for interesting ideas.
I came across an article in our local newspaper, The Arizona Republic, about a longevity study. In this particular issue they highlighted three people. I was especially interested in their ages and their activities. This is what I read:
A one hundred and six year old woman – reads two newspapers a day and has daily visitors.
A ninety two year old man – exercises three times a week, including weights, stretches, sit ups, push ups and knee bends.
An eighty seven year old woman – plays golf and drives to Arizona Diamondbacks baseball games. She also exercises, including weight lifting, and swims daily.
Dr. Walter Nieri, who did the study, learned that those who live long independent lives, seem to share the following: they are cheerful, have a good diet, exercise, have an active social network, have an ability to overcome hardships and have a religious or spiritual base.
In taking stock of myself at eighty two years of age, I find that I have a reasonably good diet, have a very active social network, I am cheerful and have a strong religious and spiritual base.
I fall short in most of their daily activities. I gave up golf seven years ago and I watch baseball games sitting on a comfy chair in my living room. I don’t swim anymore because it messes up my hair, and I’m not sure I could lift more than two pound weights. My exercise has dwindled down to grocery shopping, doing the laundry, talking to people a lot, hugging the children at StarShine Academy where I volunteer, and writing blogs and books.
If my daughter, Jan Shoop, has anything to do with it I will begin exercising immediately.
If you would like to read about the kids at StarShine Academy check out the blog I write with Jan at www.kidswithoutstuff.com