Posts Tagged ‘Health’

There really is no elegant way for a woman my age to say this, but my snatch was on fire this morning!

Okay. Enough with the double entendres – I won’t share with you details of my explosive hips or random utterances of how good it feels. Seriously, my snatch was something to behold – at least I thought so.

Enough with the snatch jokes already.

Enough with the snatch jokes already.

Granted, I did not have much weight on the bar – a measly 45# – but I have not even attempted a snatch in weeks so I was anxious to see whether all the resistance work with chains and bands had paid off. Man, did it ever. I threw that sucker over my head like it was nothing and then I dropped down into a deep overhead squat over and over.

It not only felt good, it felt comfortable and fast. I had a feeling – a hope – that the Westside Barbell training I had been doing would give me the power and strength I desperately need. It did.

I am completely smitten with Westside. It makes sense to me and I need more things in my life that make sense. The training is hard – not just because it takes a lot of time but because I’m working little teeny, weeny muscles that I didn’t even know I had and they hurt like hell. (more…)

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Yes, I take supplements. Actually, I’ve been taking supplements since before they were called supplements.

Back in the 1960s, my pre-performance supplement was sticking my finger in my mouth, then dipping it into a cardboard box of cherry Jello, then sticking my finger back in my mouth.

Pre-performance supplement circa 1960s

Pre-performance supplement circa 1960s

Do that a few dozen times and when the start gun goes off you’ve got a red-fingered, sugar-fueled 10–year-old swimming her little arms off.

If we wanted more protein, we ate more hamburgers. Post-workout? A Zagnut bar, or if the vending machine was out of Zagnuts, a Butterfinger. We hydrated with Tang.

Today I’m overwhelmed with all the supplements out there. I have no idea what to buy despite all my research. Which is why I rely on Tommy, an amazing athlete and coach, who is kind of like the Nevada Test Site for supplements. Tommy has tried a LOT of supplements. He’s probably going to glow in the dark when he’s old with all the stuff he’s tried. (more…)

So, the other day I’m teaching spin class at the box and I look down and I’m like, “Whoa, whose legs are those!”

I was sprinting and the skin on my thighs looked like it came off Yoda’s forehead. Nasty. Which brings me to fashion. Many of us older athletes still have very good shapes.

Yoda: Beyond botox

Yoda: Beyond botox

In other words, we look pretty good fully clothed. However, you put that shapely figure in some Lycra and we’ve all got a problem. Sure, those Lycra shorts fit you fine and  from a quarter mile away you might actually look like a 30-something-year-old. But something isn’t right.

It’s the skin.

Years of life-guarding, running, biking, swimming, skiing and using baby oil and iodine as sunscreen has left me covered with senior freckles (age spots), wrinkles and skin so thin that it looks like flesh colored crepe paper. Nobody wants to see skin like that. I don’t even want to see skin like that.

Gravity, too, has taken a toll on other body parts. Ain’t all the overhead plate lunges on the planet going to restore my derrier to its rightful place in the universe. I have no problem with my gray hair because I have no gray hair, thanks to my friends at L’Oreal. But there is no getting out of my own skin.

I wear long tights in the cooler months. But I live in south Florida and our box has no air conditioning. In the summer, it gets hot. We’re talking Bikram Crossfit hot. I know better than to take off my shirt and walk around like the young gals with just a sports bra and shorts. But it’s too hot for tights and sleeves in the summer.

I don’t want to skeeve people out but I also don’t want to pass out from heat exhaustion. My shorts and sleeveless tees are fine with me. But I ask you, dear reader, should we be covering it up?

If you ever wondered whether you REALLY have a muffin top, buy a pair of compression tights. You will never doubt again.

My coach, Matt, insisted I get compression tights. He said compression speeds muscle recovery and helps control inflammation. He told me to wear them for at least two hours a day and sleep in them. You gotta trust your coach and so I ordered a pair – $75 – and that’s 60% off the normal price.

After the muffin-top experiment I did some research on compression gear: Here are some excerpts from an article about compression gear.

Compression clothing — most often made of a blend of spandex and nylon and engineered to be stretchable while maintaining a specific structure — has been used in the medical field for years. 

My Skins RY400 recovery tights on a model without a muffin-top

My Skins RY400 recovery tights on a svelte model without a muffin-top

The garments apply mechanical pressure to the body, compressing and helping support underlying tissue. This increase in pressure can help improve circulation in patients with low blood pressure, treat varicose or spider veins, prevent leg and ankle swelling and even support wound healing. When used properly in these contexts, research suggests compression gear is actually very effective. Clinical compression garments have even been shown to improve functional movement in patients with disabilities such as arthritis or paralysis!

Compression clothing can enhance overall circulation, helping speed muscle recovery time post-exercise. Worn after exercise, that extra squeeze has also been shown to reduce delayed onset muscle soreness. And in one (less-than-comfortable-sounding) study, wearing a whole body compression suit for 24-hours following a workout showed enhanced recovery compared with a non-compressive control (in both men and women).

Inflammation is the enemy of older athletes – and older people in general. I’m not talking about the kind of inflammation you get when you take off your shoes during a long flight, fall asleep and then can’t put your shoes back on because your feel are so swollen. (This really happened to me on a flight to Paris and I had to walk through Charles de Gaulle airport in my socks.)

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Yesterday we had one of those retirement-planning sessions at work. It’s a good thing they did it at the end of the day because there was no way I could go back to work after that much fun. Before the seminar I received a “Retirement Readiness Statement” which had a lot of numbers on it and none of them looked promising.

Let me start by saying the company I work for has fabulous benefits – medical, dental, disability, vision, matching 401K and a pension. I am blessed. However, according to my “Retirement Readiness Statement” I’m going to need $20,776 every year – in addition to my social security and pension – to maintain my current standard of living, which ain’t much.

Then they proceeded to tell me how much I need to save between now and age 65 – when I will allegedly retire – to have that $20,776.

Surely those numbers are wrong. Indeed, they are. It appears the folks who prepared my “Retirement Readiness Statement” based their estimates on me dying at about age 80 – the average life expectancy of an American woman.

That’s just 15 years of retirement. Are you kidding me! I’m planning on living until 100. I have not worked this hard for decades to get a measly 15 years of retirement. Dying at 80 would seriously piss me off.

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If you are over the age of 40 and you do Crossfit, you know why we need our own blog. Sure we have less cartilage, hair and hormones than those whipper-snappers banging out the handstand push-ups and 30-inch box jumps.

But we can seriously kick your collective asses when it comes to…comes to…comes to…big kahunes.

Do you have any idea how much gumption a 55-year-old woman in menopause must have to walk into a box w/out air conditioning and try to dead-lift a 65lbs trick next to a supple, tan 20-something-year-old blonde with a bootie that would make Kim Kardashian cry and breasts that defy gravity, who is yawning while dead-lifting #205?

Or the 60+ year-old guy who could be driving around on a golf cart, swinging sticks and drinking gin and tonics but instead decides to take his bald head to the nearest Crossfit box and try to squat below his knees with Mr. six-pack abs watching?

Oh, and did I mention they’re doing this with Kanye and Eminem blasting?

I like to think we’re special. My chiropractor thinks we’re idiots. Still we go, despite the aches and pains and Kanye. Damn the muffin-tops and man-boobs. We’re gonna WOD right next to you. And we’re going to love it and you love us back.

Two years ago, at age 52, I drank the Crossfit Kool-aid. I am now a Level One trainer and still love Crossfit. But I do have unique issues that don’t revolve around getting drunk and laid. I need someone I can talk to about glucosamine, arthritis and whether 40-year-olds should even be considered Masters.

I – and hopefully you – need a blog. So, here we go. Have at it!