As my Oregon seasons change and it is finally the full on season for paddling lakes, rivers – and the west coast ocean – I am ready to work my way into my best fitness and performance. I’m paddling fast towards my 68th birthday on June 2 and am seeking a good balance of nutrition/wellness. A few Facebook posts in which I inquired, “what works for you” delivered the most passionate and informational replies, more than anything I have ever posted before. (Thank you ALL)
Until I read the book SUPERLIFE (Thanks from the bottom of my heart to Karen Wrenn), I thought the “best me” would be a thinner, leaner me. So I had sworn off beer (Yes, I live in beer-town Bend, Oregon), then I did Weight Watchers (points vs activity), dabbled in Paleo, learned the “SUPERFOODS -Top 14 Foods That Will Change Your Life.” ( an eye-opening book by Steven Pratt and Kathy Matthews). I even worked hard on following an “acid-reflux” diet when some disturbing symptoms made me worry. That led to Alejandro Junger’s CLEAN GUT and Dr. William Davis’s WHEAT BELLY.
Who knew that my biggest “crave food,” pizza, was made best with high-gluten flour. I already knew that flour products wreck havoc with my joints where arthritis (yup, inflammation) has set up a home. When I avoid all flour products I have less ache-y and swelling and more energy. That has been a fairly easy habit to maintain for the past 5 years.
Back to SUPERLIFE. Who knew that a very real, solid and do-able strategy was a simple as an alkaline body, something above a PH of 7.0. Uh Oh! Just when chemistry seemed like a long-ago thing you had to study. Of all the “diets” and eating plans/rationales I studied, SUPERLIFE made the most sense. Author, Darin Olien, is fully immersed in the work he does – and we can all benefit. Their MISSION: We provide resources for people to make the simple lifestyle changes needed to live a healthy SuperLife.
Balance is something we standup paddlers know alot about. And SUPERLIFE is about a balance of 5 “Life Forces.” These are: nutrition, hydration, oxygenation, alkalization and detoxification. In the most balanced and logical manner Darien took me on a fascinating journey during both the first, and second, reads of his book.
And so, finally, I discovered the rationale behind something that might seem too simple. Darin explains the five simple fixes that will make you healthy fit and (yes, this) eternally awesome. After my reading, I listed suggested foods that would add to my alkalinity – actually wrote down the ones I could eat regularly, easily.
I then made a list of things that added acidity – just to keep me focused on avoiding them. No, you don’t need to NEVER have those (sugary things, caffeine, alcohol), but you need to be aware that they create an environment in your home. Yes, in your home that is your physical body, that is more acidic. There is not enough room for me to explain the entire philosophy here.
But know this: I have taken the time to read and understand what are the “five life forces” and why they matter. What a big surprise! Hydration is right up there with nutrition, followed by the gift of a cardio workout – oxygenation. Then along came the “life force” I never even considered: ALKALIZATION. What?
That was the biggest eye opener – and on a very strict eating and workout plan that generated the most alkaline me I discovered an energy and wellness level that I hadn’t felt in a long, long time. By the time I got to the fifth life force, detoxification, I was on the band wagon.
There are so many ways to feed your water athlete self. If you really want to make a difference (at any age), take a close read of SUPERLIFE. I would love your comments and the discoveries in wellness that you have made.
I am only this young (what? 67.8 years) once. I am dedicated to making the best of it.