News and Opinion from Anne Barone to Keep You Chic & Slim

|| 4 October 2019

Exercise & Jambes Lourdes

Anne in green shirt and pants mowing lawn with electric lawnmower

image: Anne mowing at Provence-sur-la-Prairie

We know about exercise: Necessary for good health at all ages. For those 60+ years, exercise is crucial for body and brain health. No other exercise does as good a job keeping my blood pressure in normal range as mowing the lawn.

Of course, I have to be sensible about how long, and in what temperatures I mow. And I have to on my guard for jambes lourdes. Those of you who have read Chic & Slim Toujours or Chic & Slim Toujours 2 are familiar with this hot weather “heavy legs” problem.

In August and September this year I suffered several episodes of jambes lourdes when I was mowing — or was on my feet outdoors in the heat for lengthy periods. When my legs began to have that stinging sensation, and I felt as if my veins were popping, I had to retreat indoors and elevate my legs for 10 or 15 minutes. At the end of an outdoor work session, I might rest for 15 or 20 minutes on my slantbed. Having my feet 14 inches (36 cm) higher than my head helped ease the discomfort.

One thing I learned living in tropical West Africa is that lightweight 100 percent cotton clothing is the best choice in high heat and humidity. Those full-legged pants I am wearing in the photo above are made in Africa (for a company based in Houston, Texas). They are actually designed for big game hunters, but the kind of movements necessary for a safari are similar to the kind of movements necessary for gardening chez moi. And the heat here in Provence-sur-la-Prairie in summer can equal Africa in humidity — and exceed Africa in heat. True, full legs on pants make one’s legs look fat. But mowing the lawn in the height of summer, avoiding heat stroke takes precedence over chic.

So while exercise is necessary for health, taking adequate breaks and avoiding over-exertion are insurance that you can continue regular exercise lifelong.

Anne with backyard sunflowers

image: Anne with backyard sunflowers

From recent mowing I took a break to pick some of the sunflowers growing along the fence. I love sunflowers and have struggled to establish them in my garden. In the end it was the birds bringing in seeds from a neighbor’s bird feeder that succeeded where my careful planting had failed. Sometimes you just have to let Nature do its thing.

sunflowers in blue and white Spanish sangria pitcher

image: sunflowers in Anne's Spanish sangria pitcher

For a “vase” I decided on my Spanish sangria pitcher. The inscription says: Hermano Bebe Que La Vida Es Breve. Drink, Brother, For Life Is Short.

Exercise is for brain and body health. Whatever exercise you do, you will find it more enjoyable if you wear comfortable clothing while you exercise. And take regular breaks “to smell the roses” — or pick the sunflowers.

be chic, stay slimAnne Barone