Best Year of My Life? 55

My StoryBy Tim Clark

Fifty-five is one of the best years of my life. Refreshed, renewed, and fantastic, life has rarely been sweeter. Life is wonderful and each day is a treasure. And, amazingly it really only took me fifty five years to learn the secret. Best of all, the secret is now yours.

I quit smoking at fifty two years old. It was a spur of the moment decision. An appointment with a new doctor. A fresh start. It seemed natural. And, it was.

If you have never smoked I envy your wisdom. But, if you have smoked as long as I had it might seem impossible to stop. But, it is not. And no matter what it takes, you should stop. It was not an act of enormous willpower. I have very little of that. It was just a decision and a promise.

There is an old saying “If hunger is not the problem, food is not the solution.” By extension, smoking is never the solution. After the first week, perhaps two (the time is as varied as the people quitting), there is a noticeable jubilation that can best be described as euphoria.

As the poisons are flushed from the body it creates a feeling of wellness and health that is intoxicating. Plus, there is the satisfaction of feeling “Hey, I am not a smoker.” Over three years later it is still a source of immense pride.

With the coming of the New Year in 2015 I decided to start exercising. Nothing huge. Walking and some resistance training. Starting slowly was critical. Yes I wanted to “feel the burn.” But at my age it does not take much to burn out. So, I watched myself and read several articles on beginning a workout regimen at my age.

Three times a week I schlepped to the gym and hit the treadmill, exercise bike or elliptical trainer. It seemed beneficial to change machines and work different muscles. Soon the gym seemed more like a reward and less like toil. I actually look forward to working out. One small step at a time I became fitter and the rewards are manifold. It was the same pleasure as quitting smoking.

At the same time I started to eat more vegetables and fruit, having both with almost every meal. At first, it seemed an inconvenience, washing grapes, peeling an orange, slicing a cucumber. Potato chips, cookies, they are so much easier. But, soon, an apple for a snack is anticipated and so delicious. Shopping the sales at the local grocery stores not only saves money, but guarantees a variety of tastes, textures, and pleasure.

I feel so much better than I have in years. I am more active, and heathy. None of these were expensive, or difficult. Each has added to the overall improvement and each is a habit that can last for the rest of my life.

Hippocrates said:

If we could give every individual the right amount to nourishment and exercise, not too little and not too much, we would have found the safest way to health.”

He was right. Join me in my efforts to live better, live longer and be happier.

Tim Clark lives in Ohio with his family. He hopes to inspire others with his success story and to encourage others to proclaim they now feel better than they have in years thanks to healthy lifestyle choices.

Editor’s Note:

If you have a personal best story you would like to share, please email editor@healthyaging.net for editorial guidelines.

 

 

Subscribe to Healthy Aging® Magazine

The Premier Lifestyle Magazine for All Ages

Receive four digital issues delivered to your inbox. Just $15.00