My dad was in his seventies and in pretty good shape for a guy his age. He still ran a home-based business, but you could tell he was getting on. He moved a little slower getting around the house. He creaked a bit getting up from a chair. Stairs left him a little breathless even when he hung onto the hand rail.
And then a customer came in. Suddenly, my dad was bright, lively, active and speedy. No creaking, no groaning, no hesitating, and no hand rail as he bounded up the stairs. I’m sure the customer felt he was dealing with a man in his fifties.
We Prime Women readers know how to look young. Our wardrobes are fashionable and smart. Our hairdos and makeup keep us looking appealing and with it, but what happens to that youthful impression when we start to move? If we are a little bit stiff, a little bit slow, and a little bit unsteady on our feet, we start to give the impression of being past our prime. Fortunately, there are steps we can take to stay primed and youthful throughout our lives.
Flexibility is the antithesis to stiffness. Yoga, Pilates and even simple stretching exercises can keep all our joints mobile and hold any creaking at bay. Stretching can be done even before we get out of bed in the morning, making our first steps of the day fluid and flowing. As we start the day with youthful movement, so will it continue.
Slowing down is closely associated with aging and thus to be avoided. Exercise (You knew this was coming!) is what can keep us up to speed and moving like a teenager. It also has many other benefits, like helping us avoid diseases and keeping our waistlines trim. Any time you spend exercising is a very good investment not only in how you look and feel now, but also in how long you will be able to remain attractive and active, so you can enjoy the rest of your life. And you need not always head for the gym. Going for a walk works to keep you primed too.
Fashion models who parade down staircases are taught that railings are for the old and the infirm. We need to be able to stand and move on our own two feet. Being unsteady on or, even worse, falling, can hurt our image to say nothing of our bodies, but there is a lot we can do to keep moving like models.
First, there is our choice of footwear. It does us no good to wear glamorous stiletto heels if they make us wobbly or trip us up. However, it doesn’t mean that we go to dress up occasions in sports shoes. There are many really cute and stylish shoes that are more stable than spike heels, without turning to “sneakers.”
There are also exercises to help us maintain or regain our balance. One good habit to get into is to get dressed or undressed standing up. Do not sit down to put on your shoes, socks or jeans. At first you may want to hold onto something or lean against a wall. We definitely do not want to fall. With practice, that support will no longer be needed. And the next time you visit a home where you are asked to remove your shoes and can do so without a seat, you will be impressive.
Finally, remember my dad. Mobility and agility come at least as much from your mind as from your body. If you think of yourself as someone who is youthful, flexible and lively, you will automatically move like such a person. So, put a smile on your face, think young thoughts, and get moving!