Retirement Redesigned

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Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Retirement Redesigned

HomeThe Weekly ResetGrowing Healthier In Retirement

Growing Healthier In Retirement

This post is a duplication of our newsletter, The Weekly Reset, where we review a key theme each week. In the spotlight this week: Growing Healthier In Retirement. Do you think it is possible to still work on your health after retirement?

A note from Johann

Retirement need not be the beginning of the end.

Improved health and vigor are possible.

The results of a survey conducted by Reset in order to establish the most important concerns for retirees found that health, unsurprisingly, was top of the list. It is for this reason that we focus so strongly on building and maintaining good health in retirement. Broken down to the various functions of good health, mobility and comfortable overall movement are critical factors.

Even in retirement, the bio-kinetic experts say mobility can be restored and improved. To achieve this improvement, we need a carefully planned exercise routine. We have always assumed that advanced age causes an inevitable slowing down and decreased ability to move well. It is perhaps surprising to learn then that instead of a downhill decline, the opposite is possible – an improvement of movement.

It is the small muscle groups that have to be exercised and strengthened to ensure steady balance and overall bio-kinetic competence. This will aid in the typical mobility challenges, like getting out of a chair or a car and bending down. It will also address the possibility of falling. In fact, falling and the fear of it are perennial concerns for older adults.

The good news is that better health can be achieved if there is a strong enough drive and the commitment to stick to the exercises outlined by a bio-kinetics expert. All it needs is a different mindset. We are so fixed in our thinking of declining health in retirement that reversing our minds might take some effort and practice.

It is interesting to learn that the concept of it and the naming of bio-kinetics is something that has happened in South Africa. The discipline is called by different names in other countries. Having the benefit of a face-to-face relationship with a qualified bio-kineticist is the ideal. For many that live in centres where there is no such professional practice, the thought might be to pursue it online. Our guests during a recent webinar on the subject say an online program can work, but that must be a last resort. It is nowhere as effective as doing it in person.

For me, the critical aspect of sound health in advanced age is the regularity of exercise and how one maintains a positive mind about it. It is a wholesome part of a sound daily routine.


Our top pick this week:

Exercise and Aging: Can You Walk Away From Father Time?

Elderly exercising

“The loss of muscle continues, eventually reducing a man’s musculature by up to 50%, which contributes to weakness and disability. At the same time, muscles and ligaments get stiff and tight. Although men have a lower risk of osteoporosis (“thin bones”) than women, they do lose bone calcium as they age, increasing the risk of fractures. One reason for the drop in muscle mass and bone density is a drop in the male hormone testosterone, which declines by about 1% per year after the age of 40. Though most men continue to have normal testosterone levels and reproductive capacity throughout life, many experience a gradual decline in libido and sexual vigor.

The nervous system also changes over time. Reflexes are slower, coordination suffers, and memory lapses often crop up at embarrassing times. The average person gets less sleep in maturity than in youth, even if he no longer needs to set his alarm clock. Not surprisingly, spirits often sag as the body slows down.

It sounds grim — and these changes happen to healthy men. Men with medical problems start to age earlier and slow down even more. All in all, aging is not for sissies.

No man can stop the clock, but every man can slow its tick. Research shows that many of the changes attributed to aging are actually caused in large part by disuse. It’s new information, but it confirms the wisdom of Dr. William Buchan, the 18th-century Scottish physician who wrote, “Of all the causes which conspire to render the life of a man short and miserable, none have greater influence than the want of proper exercise.” And about the same time, the British poet John Gay agreed: “Exercise thy lasting youth defends.”

Exercise is not the fountain of youth, but it is a good long drink of vitality, especially as part of a comprehensive program… And a unique study from Texas shows just how important exercise can be.”

Click here to read the whole article on the Harvard Health page

Our Spotlight Video:

Growing Healthier In Retirement

Can we grow healthier in retirement? Rather than just maintaining the health we have and trying to prevent health concerns we can strive to improve our health during retirement and actually lengthen our healthspan. In this video we explore some of the areas we can work on to improve our health and our general wellbeing.

Click play to watch our spotlight video of the week

Spotlight of the week

Other Highlights Of The Week:

How Adults Can Get Started With Exercise

Image of a starting point on the road ahead

“Exercise and physical activity are great for your mental and physical health and help keep you independent as you age. Here are a few things you may want to keep in mind when beginning to exercise.

Start Slowly When Beginning Exercise

The key to being successful and safe when beginning a physical activity routine is to build slowly from your current fitness level. Over-exercising can cause injury, which may lead to quitting. A steady rate of progress is the best approach.

To play it safe and reduce your risk of injury:

• Begin your exercise program slowly with low-intensity exercises.
• Warm up before exercising and cool down afterward.
• Pay attention to your surroundings when exercising outdoors.
• Drink water before, during, and after your workout session, even if you don’t feel thirsty.
• Wear appropriate fitness clothes and shoes for your activity.
• If you have specific health conditions, discuss your exercise and physical activity plan with your health care provider.”

Click here to read the article on National Institute of Aging

Weekly Poll

This week’s poll: On purpose after work
Option A: Purpose is just a buzzword.
Option B: Our jobs give us purpose.
Option C : Our purpose is bigger than our jobs.
Option D : You never really find your purpose, you strive toward it.

Click here to answer the question in our Facebook group

Last week’s poll: On our health after retirement
Option A: I can get healthier after retirement.
Option B: I’ll manage my health as bet I can.

Last week’s finding:
71% responded – I can get healthier after retirement.

71% Image

Most Popular Post of the Week

9 Amazing Things Exercise Can Do For You After 50

Click here to read the article on Livestrong

Most Popular Quote of the Week

“It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver.” Mahatma Gandhi

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Quote by Mahatma Ghandi

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Johann is the founding partner of Reset Retirement where we focus on assisting people with planning for the non-financial aspects of their lives after full-time work. He had a long career in executive search and leadership as the founding partner and chairman of Heidrick & Struggles in South Africa where he was the head of the company’s board practice.