Life Can Change on a Dime: Prepare for It

Life Can Change on a Dime: Prepare for it!

At 82 years Jane Fonda looks pretty amazing.

She looks good, not overly ridiculous. Many want the name of her surgeon. Cosmetic Surgery is a matter of personal choice. But let’s just talk about health for a minute. Like it or not, you have to be in pretty good health to withstand surgery of any kind, including many cosmetic procedures in the name of looking youthful. It’s serious stuff. Joan Rivers died from complications for a minor elective surgery. It is said that the surgery won’t kill you, it’s the recovery.

Whether you have a cosmetic procedure planned in the future, or any surgery planned, you need to be in the best shape of your life. Your immune system, heart, and lungs, better be ready to roll. And if you don’t have any planned surgery, you know life can change on a dime. You can’t get healthy a day before a planned surgery or unforeseen emergency situation. You want those little health ducks in a row for no matter how life takes you.

With the birth of my first child, my doctor told me I was a picture of health. After delivery, I suddenly took a dip and nearly died. I have been told I’m allergic to codeine. Oh great. Well, had I not been so healthy, I may not have survived the life threatening emergency. I taught an aerobics class the day before delivery and never expected any complications. I fought hard, body, mind and soul to get back. Out of body experience, meeting my maker kind of seriousness. The experience changed my perspective to say the least. Health is a savings account. Make deposits daily.

Go ahead and judge Jane Fonda for her fabulously done cosmetic surgeries, but you have to give it to her for the amazing self- management of health she has shown over all these years. I love her workout videos from “the day” and she continues to keep exercise at the top of her list of priorities. Fitness takes hard work. You can’t pay someone to do it for you. Cher gets it. “if it came in a bottle…”

As a trainer I have been taught when you do cardio exercise, your heart builds new pathways to the heart. I’m not talking new arteries. But little differences in the blood flood. 1When cholesterol-clogged plaque narrows an artery that feeds the heart, the body responds by trying to bulk up tiny blood vessels in the heart. As they grow more muscular and interconnected, they begin to reroute some of the blood around the blockage. Scientists have been trying for years to nude collateral blood vessels to develop and prosper, without great success.” If they could bottle it and sell it, it would sell out. Instead it’s,

“Do- it -yourself Cardiac by-pass surgery: Buy a pair of walking shoes.

In my years as a Trainer and Coach in Mammoth Lakes, Ca., I had the pleasure of training Herb. Herb was a robust, healthy, and amazing family man. He had it all. A big tennis player that never missed his gym workouts. He hired me to help him strengthen his tall, lean statue. We embarked upon a serious weight training, body building program that carried him through two hip replacements. Planned surgeries that we prepared him for. In spending hours with my client and friend, I learned that he too had an experience with death. He literally died on the very lobby floor of the gym we used to train in. One day after playing tennis, on his way of of the club, he had a heart attack and his heart stopped. He was given CPR and kept alive by our small towns EMS and flown out to a critical care facility 3 hours away. After it was all said and done, his cardiologist told him that because of his aerobic exercise and all those beautiful pathways, he survived against all odds. Those tiny, little guys were able to keep him alive! Then there is Tim. A cheerful, and always positive man who played semi-pro basketball in his youth. Ran a fish hatchery in the most beautiful California country and was really living a healthy lifestyle. He did weight training with me at the club a couple days a week. As with many aging athletes, Tim was up for a hip replacement surgery. He wanted to get in the best shape possible before his surgery and trained faithfully. Really built up his body with a healthy diet and exercise program. Well, guess what. There where complications after the surgery. Serious complications. Tim went through a few years of touch and go but his doctor told him it was his amazing health and fitness level that saved his life. To this day when I run into Tim at the local market, I hear “HEY KATHY DOLAN, thank you” and with gratitude repeats his story of amazement. He is now retired and living a grateful life in a town near by. Herb and Tim are just two of many stories of staying with the fit and healthy lifestyle. Life doesn’t come with guarantees, but you can increase the odds.

So my hats off to Jane Fonda, Herb, Tim and all those who are putting in the work and keeping HEALTH top priority. Making those deposits. You never know when you will need it.

1 Harvard Health Publishing Harvard Medical School

Kathy Dolan, ACE Fitness Coach, Personal Trainer, Yoga Instructor, is self-employed health and fitness pro and writer.  You will find her teaching and training on the Class It Up Virtual Studio and writing health and fitness programs for clients of all ages. 

© Copyright Kathy Dolan Fitness, 2018