Today we are talking health and wellness and how to age well with Daniel Sides. I met with him a few weeks ago and was impressed with how much he knows about health and wellness. Today he is going to share his 5 Principles on How to Age Well.
About Daniel Sides
Fitness has always been part of Dan’s life. He grew up on a horse ranch, then he moved onto to construction, so he was always doing laborious jobs. He got into additional exercise at the age of eighteen and has conditioned his body ever since. Dan is now a power lifter, motorcycle drag racer, and a Thai masseuse.
What solidified his commitment to wellness was when his dad developed Alzheimer’s. Dan visited him in a nursing home for 4 years. The experience burned into his brain that he would not go out that way and that he had to do something to prevent it. He also wondered how he could take his passion and make it into a business.
That is where the idea of the Second Half Coach began. The name is a football analogy for the second half of life. Dan says that if you’re a man at the age of 38 or woman at the age of 40, you are statistically in your second half of life.
Dan has the job of giving his clients “the half time speech.” He says the second half of life is a time to reevaluate our physical condition and plan on how to move forward.
“We know the outcome of the game, and we don’t win.”
Dan focuses on helping to make the precious time we have left more enjoyable.
He categorizes the second-halfers into three groups
- Those who want the retirement village setting, then assisted living, and eventually full care
- Those who try to avoid going to assisted living, but know it could come up
- Those like Dan who will fight going to a nursing home and want to keep doing all the things they love doing
If you fall into the last group, here is Dan’s advice!
5 Principles of Aging Well
1. Get to know yourself – Many people avoid this in our society. It’s tough to do an honest self-evaluation. You might need some input from others, and it will be tough to take. You must accept your faults. Be true to yourself from there and be true to your word. When you make a commitment, keep it. This increases self-worth.
2. Manage your stress – Not all stress is bad. For example, exercise is actually stress and you grow from that, but unhealthy unmanaged stress is the biggest killer. We all have different propensities for disease from genetics, but stress seems to take advantage of these weaknesses. When you’re happy and peaceful your body has the ability to take care of its processes and heal itself.
How to lower stress:
- Forgive yourself and others
- Say the Serenity Prayer
- Strive for fearlessness
- Be grateful for what you have
- Simplify your life in any way you can
- Make your peace with the god of your understanding
3. Continue your education and act on your knowledge – It’s crucial to keep learning as you age. It’s exercise for your brain. Read, take classes, try to utilize different parts of your brain. Do things left-handed. If you’re not musically inclined, learn an instrument. Go against your instincts. This enhances cognitive function.
More ideas for a life of learning:
- Plan for the future – if you don’t plan financially and medically, you won’t have the security and resources to enjoy yourself.
- Travel – see the world. Some people feel safer staying close to home, but step out and go somewhere you’ve never been before.
- Stay current with technology and world events – Older people get left out and need assistance because they don’t stay up to date with technology. You don’t have to be an expert, but it’s not going away so you must adapt or get left behind.
- Know enough to make your own medical decisions – Part of our problem is finding accurate health information, but you have to know about your issues to be involved in your medical decisions. Otherwise you’re just another patient going in for your five minutes with a doctor who will likely just write you a script and send you on your way. Many people become over prescribed and do nothing to improve their health.
4. Body Management – Manage your weight to stay independent. Strengthen your body. This doesn’t just apply to people over forty. You should think about body management in your thirties. Bone density, muscle strength, ligament and tendon conditioning must begin early because there comes a time when it’s too late to build new tissue.
- Stretch – If you’re not big into exercise, Dan says there is one thing you must do to stay mobile and that is to stretch. You don’t think about as you age because you don’t do as many things as you used to. But your body tightens and freezes up and you don’t realize it until you start stretching again. Yoga is healing and helps keep the body moving.
- Diet – Dan says that you don’t have to go on a crazy health diet. The body does well in the middle of the road. Moderation is the key.
- Sleep – Sleep is a problem for a lot of people, especially women over 40. When you sleep is when you heal. Make sleep a priority.
5. Keep yourself busy – Most people wait all their lives to get to a point to where they don’t have to do anything. Retirement is not just to do nothing, but to spend time exploring and doing things that you love. There are so many things you can do to keep busy and fulfilled, not just hobbies around the house, but discovering your gifts and using them to help others. Volunteer, do some church-oriented activities, find your passion!
Contact The Second Half Coach
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