In Health and Fitness

I was sitting in the waiting room at my chiropractor’s the other day and I picked up a slim paperback book as I was waiting. It offered easy to follow, sensible, ways to maintain good health in order to prevent us getting old too early.

So I read it. Quick smart! And as I read it made me smile πŸ™‚ for a number of reasons.

How to maintain good health

The book was called “Don’t let the Old Girl in,” by Robert C. Gould and there was a matching book called “Don’t let the Old Man in,” which of course I had to buy for Dave. (He wasn’t amused. I don’t know why πŸ˜‰ because it contains lots of great health tips for men.

Dave looked at his gift, and tilted his head, as if he thought that I thought he was getting old, and really he didn’t want me to think that at all! So I had to do a bit of explaining!

But I’d read part of the female version of the book in the waiting room and kept nodding my head, realising how much of it was true, and in minutes I devoured the no nonsense health tips for women. I also thought about the funny things about ageing, Β and how there are some things we can do every day to prevent us becoming old before we actually have to – at least before things are out of our control.

The preface reads:

“If you believe you will live forever; if you believe you are too old to change then read no further. Either you know it all or are just too lazy to reach for the possible.There is nothing for you here.”

Well, I had to read on because I don’t believe that.

You can probably read this book: “Don’t Let The Old Girl In” in about an hour, it’s a manual which had me nodding in acknowledgement that there are aspects of my lifestyle where the old woman is letting herself in uninvited, and it made me know that I wanted to stop her before she gets her wrinkly foot in over the threshold.

I’m not saying I want to be younger, or that I’m going to be mutton dressed up as lamb. No! No!

I’m not quite sixty, but I am nearly there, as I expect some of you are nearing that age, or there already.

Make no bones about it. We are in the last quarter of our lifetime. It’s an age where old age begins, whether we want it to or not, but it’s also an age where we don’t have to really let the old girl in just yet.

How to maintain good health

We have to face new challenges, some may call it an old age crisis,and this might make us feel uncomfortable, uneasy and worry about the direction our lives are going in.

So we should take some time to figure out how we are going to move forward and adjust our lifestyles to the changes that our lives demand.

Health Care and patching things up.

This will include paying more attention to health care, healthy eating, healthy living and finding new ways to do old things.

Age can creep in without us really seeing it happen. Or it can feel like a wasting condition. Or we feel just like we have to keep on patching things up.

But it doesn’t have to, not all the time.

What gives away your age?

What’s sad but real, and the author alludes to this too, is that *the young* are certain we are old – although at heart we probably feel as if we are still in our thirties!Β We might say to ourselves that we don’t feel or look old, but that’s not how either our children or the shops salesgirls see us!

We don’t want to be regarded as old people. We probably don’t want to look old, behave old or act like old people, but we will catch ourselves saying and doing things which give away our age.

Don’t say “When I was a girl” (too often!)

It might be because we use a certain word or phrase, or dress in a certain way, or talk about ‘the good old days’, or just don’t adapt to the newness of technology as fast as younger people do.

It’s just the reality of the ageing process. It’s inevitable. It’s not bad. But we don’t have to let it in uninvited.

The do-not-grow-old-before-your-time commandments

The book goes on to offer 15 commandments, each with a brief anecdotal justification and affirmation statements to assist in their execution. There’s a daily check chart and Will Shakespeare’s perspective on the Stages of Life too.

Whatever your age, I think you’ll like it too.

For now, in brief, here are some of the commandments from the book, along with some health tip commandments of my own (which you can take or leave πŸ˜‰

How to maintain good health

Tips to maintain Good Health – and Keep that Old Girl Out!

  1. Accept regular social invitations no matter who they’re from.
  2. Maintain a healthy diet. Don’t eat empty calories from processed foods, and do cut down on alcohol.
  3. Laugh every day. Be with someone or phone someone who makes you chuckle.
  4. Keep moving and exercise for an hour each day – you choose how or what, but just Do It!
  5. Dress well.Β There’s getting dressed in any old thing, and there’s dressing with thought, to look the best you can, everyday.
  6. Keep doing things for yourself – learn how to fix stuff!
  7. Do good turns every day.
  8. Get adequate sleep – for me it’s 8 hours.
  9. Exercise your brain. Read, play Soduko, do crosswords, take up bridge, try and remember all your computer passwords!
  10. Try to live a more simple life.

I’m giving it a go – living by these commandments, adhering to these daily health tips. I hope I’ll manage to keep the old girl at bay for a while yet, without trying to falsely look or act younger than I really am.

Health tip of the day!

For a great gift, or just to have lying around the house for others to read, buy the book – Don’t Let the Old Girl In – it explains much more about how to live a healthy lifestyle than I can here. I think you’ll like it too.

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Showing 22 comments
  • Seana Smith
    Reply

    Hello, these are top tips. I try to move for an hour a day but am only managing 30 – 40 mins a day at the moment and none some days… cos I am looking after my old mum!!

    • Johanna
      Reply

      Hello Seana, yes moving is imperative to keeping healthy (I must get up from this computer now!) but how very tricky to fit in when you are looking after elderly parents. I hope you are doing okay and things are going well with your dear mum xx

  • Retiring not Shy!
    Reply

    Old girl, what old girl? I love your tips Jo they are so apt and great reminders. Oh and when I was young …… πŸ˜‰

    • Johanna
      Reply

      HaHa Jan – no no! When I was young!

  • Reply

    Love these tips. There’s nothing old about me. Except my knees. Oh, and maybe my neck wrinkles. Possibly my memory. They are all totally deep fried. But the rest of me is as young as I decide it to be … the power of positive thinking and all that xo

    • Johanna
      Reply

      Haha Leanne – definitely nothing old about you. The power of positive thinking and maybe ‘deep frying?’

  • Janet Camilleri
    Reply

    Sounds like a great read Jo – thanks for the recommendation! Yes I have caught myself saying “when I was your age/young” a few times now to the kidults and just want to swallow my tongue!!!

    • Johanna
      Reply

      It’s a terrible moment isn’t it Janet! You just know you shouldn’t have opened your mouth to say it, and boof! It’s out!

  • Jo
    Reply

    Great tips. I’m one of those who is convinced that old age is something that happens to other people, but I’ve always been better at fantasy than reality! I was only thinking yesterday just how far I’ve let myself go in terms of self care, bad habits & not dressing properly. It was your post the other day that made me realise I need to pay more attention to what I wear from a self-respect thing more than anything else. #TeamLovinLife

    • Johanna
      Reply

      Hi Jo, HaHa, I know what you mean. I’m often told that I live in a dream world – and yes, it’s hard not to feel that getting old is just something that we can sort of put off. But you’re right, self respect is the most important thing.

  • seizetheday20
    Reply

    I love your 10 tips Jo. Age is a state of mind, that’s for sure. We need to look after our minds and our bodies if we don’t want to “Let the old girl in” (I laughed at the title – it’s quite clever) πŸ™‚ #TeamLovinLife

    • Johanna
      Reply

      Glad you were amused, Lyndall πŸ™‚

  • Kathy Marris
    Reply

    I like the tip about never saying no to a social opportunity. I’m a great believer in looking on the light side of life and sharing a good laugh with friends. Too many older people become isolated, lonely and bitter. Laughter really is the best medicine! #TeamLovinLife

    • Johanna
      Reply

      I totally agree that laughter is our best medicine Kathy πŸ™‚

  • sizzlesue15
    Reply

    This sounds like a great read Jo and as I’m 60 next month I’m certainly pushing that old girl back out the door. In fact, I haven’t seen her yet because I still think like a 30 year old. I’m loving your new look website btw and thanks for the tips. they are common sense really but that isn’t always so common is it? #teamlovinlife
    Sue from Sizzling Towards 60 & Beyond

    • Johanna
      Reply

      Thanks Sue πŸ™‚ And yes, you’re right … they are common sense, but we so often I think we look for the complicated ways to improve our lives, thinking they must be better ways, when really we should just focus on the basics.

  • writeofthemiddle
    Reply

    Love your tips Jo and I’m trying my best with them all. Getting old sure does creep up on you! I actually feel about 35 inside but sometimes when I catch my reflection in a mirror or glass window somewhere I am shocked by what I see and realise that I do in fact look quite a bit older than that! lol The other day my sister phoned me and said she was booking a table at a Jazz club for dinner and listening to Jazz music. Before I even knew what I was saying out came “oh I don’t really go out at night anymore”. OMG – that was the old girl creeping in wasn’t it? I should go shouldn’t I? LOL Loving your blog makeover too btw – very snazzy! πŸ™‚ #TeamLovinLife

    • Johanna
      Reply

      Hello Min, I know catching sight of ourselves in a shop window is just the worst – no actually the worst is when I’m filling the car up with petrol and I catch sight of my face in bright light in the wing mirror! Yes, you much go to the jazz club for dinner and music FOR SURE!

  • Deborah Cook
    Reply

    I love your tips but confess I don’t adhere to some of them. I do believe in having a ‘young at heart’ mindset though and certainly think I don’t act my age…. which may not always be a good thing!

    • Johanna
      Reply

      I think not acting your age might be a very good thing Deb!

  • Life Images by Jill
    Reply

    thanks for these great simple tips Jo. I need to start pushing that old girl back out the door, as I feel her trying to get in a bit too often these days. Thanks Jo for another, lighthearted but to the point, post, that gets us thinking.

    • Johanna
      Reply

      Thanks Jill! I know what you mean – the old girl pops her head up at unwanted moments and I have to slam the door quite rudely sometimes!

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