Tuesday, January 11, 2011

A Fate Worse than Death

Quote du jour:
Mother: All of my friends are either dead or in assisted living.
Me: Which is worse?
Mother: Assisted living.

If ever I needed an incentive to keep fit, it's looking at the people who've gone before. My grandmother lived a full, rich* and well-traveled life until macular degeneration and osteoporosis left her blind and so afraid of falling that going down two steps while clinging to a hand rail would leave her nearly hysterical with fear. My mother took note, and took supplements, and can still see pretty well even though she's nearly at the age where my grandmother passed away. Unfortunately, she's now lost about five inches in height and is becoming extremely frail. Though the mind is as sharp as ever, the body is getting fragile.

Me, I've taken enough biology classes to know what's coming if I don't take care. Yet another incentive to load-bearing exercise and eating them vegetables.

Exercise du jour: 15 minutes stair climbing. Also, tricep dips and squats.

Done! Spent 15 minutes with Fred A. Stairs, going up and down the 48 steps 10 times. (What? Doesn't everyone name their staircase? Is it just me?) Also squats and tricep dips.

*no, not the kind of rich that you pass on to deserving grandchildren in a very material and financially profitable sense; the kind where you enjoy each new experience to the fullest.

Photo courtesy of Steve Evans. I don't know who the woman is/was, and possibly the photographer didn't either -- it's titled "Old woman of Tajikstan." I just liked the idea of a woman whose face wasn't so much lined as mapped with all the experiences she'd lived through, and who still could manage a smile for the camera.


McB said...

Exercies and veggies = good for you. Just remember: BALANCE. Lots of physically active people end up see orthopedists, and that's still a doctor. And lots of vegetarians are overweight and/or in bad health. It's all about striking the right balance, getting what you need without getting more than your body can handle.

Thus ends today's lecture.

Kelly the Happy Texan said...

Well said.

Amanda said...

The picture is well-chosen.

And yeah, it's amazing what a healthy dose of genetic warning can do for a person. We've got the macular degeneration and osteoporosis genes running amok as well, so... I'm with you. Prevention (as much as we can) is awesome.

C said...

I hear ya. Looking at my parents and aunts and uncles is becoming a real eye opener. I'd like to age with fewer problems than they have so I better get back to a healthy lifestyle again.

Merry said...

But Xenia, you already do the healthy lifestyle stuff, no? Maybe you don't run as much as you want, but you're always cycling around town and things like that.

messymimi said...

She is a beautiful soul, i'm glad you found that picture.

Keep exercising, eating right, doing everything. Every bit helps.

azusmom said...

Beautiful picture!
It kinda makes me sad, though, because in this country we're all so terrified of every wrinkle that we botox and lift and never see a face like the one in that photo!