One of the things that I’m concerned about when it comes to both retirement, and in general getting older is my health. To a certain extent, most health issues that could happen are pretty random. I’m able to reduce the probability of having some of the issues that come with aging by eating right and staying active, but realistically there is always a chance that I could drop dead at 41 from an unseen heart attack.
Rather than be over-concerned with my own mortality, I’m working on the basis that I will stay reasonably healthy with no debilitating illnesses into the foreseeable future. From my perspective, this seems to be the only way to live. If I thought I had say 10 years left, I might as well diet on all of the foods that I try to avoid and spend all of my evenings on the couch, instead of going to the gym 3 or 4 days per week and eating mostly boring foods all of the time.
One idea I read this week from Mark’s Daily Apple *was to include one mile of running into your day. 1 mile is 4 times around a regulation track, which is a good chunk of running, but not enough to really kill you if you’re totally out of shape. This distance is not really enough to cause significant joint damage, while at the same time giving a pretty good cardiovascular workout. From my viewpoint as a fairly lazy person, this is the exact type of workout that I can get into as a “better than nothing” activity. You can get the whole thing done in somewhere between 8 and 15 minutes. If you add in a few minutes for recovery, you can be back to your “regularly scheduled life” pretty quickly.
I’m sure everyone is like me, concerned with losing mobility as they age. I have family members who have health issues in their 60s who are no longer able to do the things they want to do. I would prefer to do as much as I can to prevent this, deterioration – leading up to the later stages of my life. Whether or not it will be effective is yet to be seen. Eating a reasonable diet, exercising consistently, and trying to keep as healthy as I possibly can.
The whole idea of being able to retire early is to be able to enjoy as much free time as possible. A lot of the stuff for now is physical in nature (golf, walking, and making myself tired in the gym). I’m hoping I’ll be able to do similar stuff until I drop, and I’ll try my best to stay that way, 1 mile at a time.
* – I would recommend Mark’s Daily Apple to anyone interested in their health. Although the site at times gets a little on the “preachy” side towards the “Primal” (Paleo) lifestyle, it does have a lot of interesting ideas, recipes and stories that has held my interest for the past few years.