Category: Health and wellbeing

How to Lower Health Care Costs in Retirement—The 4 Best Ways

How to Lower Health Care Costs in Retirement—The 4 Best Ways

Did you know that a recent Fidelity study shows that the average couple can expect to spend $260,000 on health care expenses in retirement? Well, unfortunately, that is the current figure circling around the retirement blogosphere. And that isn’t even taking into account the possibility of long term care such as an extended nursing home stay, a consideration which escalates the estimation well into the three hundred thousands.


It can’t be true, can it?


I know, when I saw that figure in print for the first time, I was surprised as well. But as I begin adding up all of the possible costs—really crunching the numbers—I found out it was a lot more probable than I originally thought.


So what are you to do? If you are still working, the answer is common sense: save more to cover the costs. But if you are beginning the retirement transition right now, it’s too late for that strategy. You need something to lessen the burden—and fast!


Although these four ways won’t slash that number in half by any means, they can certainly help keep your health care costs in check:


1.  Sign Up For Medicare On Time To Avoid Penalties

You must sign up during the six-month period surrounding your 65th birthday or else pay hefty penalties that continue for your entire life! Unless you have a qualifying reason, everyone should sign up for Medicare parts A and B. And unless you are on an Advantage plan with a drug plan rolled into the deal, you should sign up for Part D. Because, if you miss it by just one year, you will accrue $4,248 worth of penalties over your lifetime, assuming you live 20 years after 65.


2.  Take Advantage of the Preventive Services Provided by Medicare

Like the old saying goes, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, and Medicare agrees. While Medicare covers very few things in full, the program covers every penny of many preventive services including (but not limited to) the following:

  • Flu Shots
  • Various cancer screenings
  • Obesity screenings and counseling
  • Annual “wellness” visits
  • Tobacco use cessation counseling

Now I am not saying you should spend all of your golden years sitting in cold waiting rooms. Rather, the core of this advice is simple: take care of yourself. Take the tiny steps now, so you can avoid the big health issues later. Catch the problems in their inception, so what could have been a free office visit and quick fix doesn’t end up costing you an arm and a leg in hospital bills.


According to a study conducted by Age Wave, pre-retirees and retirees say the two most important ingredients to a happy retirement are health (81% of respondents) and financial security (58% of respondents). The funny thing is that taking preventive measures often helps both.


3.  Cut Prescription Drug Costs

It is not difficult to see that the cost of drugs, especially for those with chronic illness, contributes its fair share to that $260,000 figure in health care expenses. Sure, you have a Part D Drug Plan, but there are still expensive coverage gaps.


But the good news is there are a few things you can do to lessen the burden. You can switch to generics. You can try mail order. Some people are even splitting pills to split the bill with certain medications.


For more specific details to help you cut drug costs, read this:  “How to afford meds in the donut hole”.


4.  Beat the Medicare Supplement Creep by Shopping Around!

If you don’t have a Medicare Supplement, I would strongly recommend getting one. And if you do and you’ve been in the same one for 3-5 years, I strongly recommend that you shop around.




Because Medicare Supplement premiums naturally creep up year-by-year, and they rarely come back down. The best news is you don’t even have to change coverage when you switch. Because of standardization, any and all of Medicare’s 11 lettered plans (A-N) offer the same exact benefits no matter which company you purchase it from. It is not uncommon for people to save $40-50 per month by switching. I’ve even seen savings as high as $100 per month or more.


The point is it pays to bargain shop! And it will pay to put some or all of these health care cost cutting ideas to the test.


Want to check and see what you could save by switching? Use our free Medicare Supplement quoting tool.   No contact information required.   Or call our office and we can give you a free quote over the phone!  937-492-8800

3 Reasons Why Prescription Drugs Are So Expensive

 3 Reasons Why Prescription Drugs Are So Expensive

It is no secret that prescription drugs are outrageously expensive. After nineteen years of working with those transitioning into retirement and helping retirees shop Part D Drug Plans, I have come across some astronomic prices. To give you an idea, some of the prescriptions (without insurance, thank goodness) range from $40,000 per year all the way to $158,000 per year. And what’s more, the prescription that cost $158,000 was simply a small, white pill that my client took once a day. If you break that down to price per pill, the cost is $439 per pop. Talk about over-the-top!


The scary part is, I know this is a widespread issue. Its effects extend to burden millions of older and younger folks beyond my small office in Sidney, Ohio. I’m not naïve enough to believe that what I have witnessed is unique.


This raises the question: why? Are drug companies “getting away with murder” as Donald Trump proposed on his campaign trail? Is it a governmental failure to regulate a monstrous and out-of-control industry? Or are their prices ultimately justified? Well, I did a little digging, and it seems the general consensus centers around three main reasons:


Reason#1: The 20-Year Monopoly

If any of you have ever played the famous Parker Brother board game, you know that the game is over once one player has control of the board. It is the same with the drug industry, except their monopoly is not won through rolling doubles and buying properties, but by acquiring patents. Once a pharmaceutical company turns out a new drug, their patent grants them exclusive rights to the formula for 20 years. This prevents any generic drugs from being manufactured to provide competition. And no competition means unlimited control over price. Normally this excessive control wouldn’t be the case, but prescription drugs are not like new sneakers or television sets. Those who need them can’t live without them, and are, quite often, willing to pay anything to get them.


This wouldn’t be so bad if it were just for those first twenty years. After all, the pharmaceutical company does need some time to make profit back after dumping loads of resources into research and development to turn out the new drug. However, the companies often push their monopoly past the 20 years by changing their formula just enough to renew their patent. At that point, the monopoly can become a bit oppressive.


Reason #2: Can’t We Talk About This?

Many other countries negotiate heavily with drug companies to keep prices low. But the United States does not allow this. Medicare is not allowed to talk the price down, and others who might have a voice are silenced by the almighty dollar. Essentially, drug companies have full reign over what they charge for their prescriptions.


Imagine how much the United States could save if they allowed Medicare to have a say.  According to the Economist, Medicare is the drug companies’ “single biggest customer,” forking over $112 billion to purchase prescription medications for retirees. If they could use this buying power as leverage, AARP says that Medicare could save $16 billion annually. Then they could pass those savings over to you in the form of lower Part D premiums and fees.


Unfortunately, this is not the case as of now. Now, Medicare has to cover almost all drugs approved by the FDA, AARP says, “regardless of whether a cheaper, equally effective drug is available.”


Reason #3: Lack of Transparency in Drug Pricing

It is difficult to tell how much a drug is actually worth. Drug companies claim that research and development costs justify the high prices, but it is unclear as to how accurate this really is. Some sources, like Money Magazine dispute this explanation, citing that only 10-20% of revenue really goes to research and development.  Others, like AARP, point out that “9 out of 10 big pharmaceutical companies spend more on marketing than on research,” a statistic which shows a lot about where their priorities lie. And this all goes without saying that drug companies are rarely hurting for money anyhow. In recent years, it has proved to be a very lucrative industry.


Overall, it seems that drug companies have too much power in the United States economy. The question then turns to how can we lessen that power to make it fair for everyone involved without lessening the incentive for innovation. Because $439 for each measly pill is too much. I think everyone besides the drug companies can agree on that.


Until these issues are tackled, just do what is within your power. If you are approaching 65, get yourself on a Part D drug plan for your unique needs and situation.   Remember, at any given time there are 20+ drug plans to choose from, so don’t let company names drive you to the wrong plan.  Each person’s recommended drug plan is different based on their prescriptions.  Make sure and shop your drug plans!

Will Poor Health Prevent Me From Switching to a New Medicare Supplement?

Will Poor Health Prevent Me From Switching to a New Medicare Supplement?

There are lots of reasons you might be dissatisfied with your current health insurance plan. Perhaps you’ve had a Medicare Supplement for a few years and the premiums have been creeping up into the stratosphere. Or—if you are in an Advantage Plan—maybe you are sick and tired of an ever-changing benefits package or pesky out-of-pocket expenses like copays or coinsurance.


Regardless of the reason, you realize it’s time to switch.


If you’re in good health, it’s simple. You make like a Nike commercial and just do it.


But what if you battle blood pressure or cholesterol? What if you have diabetes? What if you have a personal history of cancer or heart trouble on your records? Or even an open heart surgery?


Well, in this case, I’d like to be the bearer of good news. It may not be as easy for you, but there’s still a really good chance you can switch.


As a quick side note, if you are in a Medicare Supplement Open Enrollment Period or a Guaranteed Issue Period, you are completely in the clear. No insurance company can deny you coverage.


But if you aren’t in one of those periods and you just want a better premium or benefits package, you can also switch.


Why? You’ll be happy to know…


Medicare Supplement Underwriting is Not as Selective as You Might Think.

Prior to Obamacare, health insurance for people under the age of 65 was much stricter. People with more serious health issues were often immediately turned away. The approach to questioning might be something like this:

  • Have you had cancer in the last 10 years?
  • Do you have a history of heart problems?
  • Do you have diabetes and take insulin?


But the Medicare Supplement underwriting process is significantly less harsh. Since Medicare is footing part of the bill for them, they aren’t taking on near as much risk. And because they aren’t taking on as much risk, they can be a bit more lax. A Supplement company’s approach to those same questions might look something like this:

  • Have you had cancer in the last 10 years? Well, as long as it’s not in the past two, we can make this work.
  • Do you have a history of heart problems? Well, have you been stable over the past two years?
  • Do you have diabetes and take insulin? Let’s take a closer look.


I’m not saying there aren’t some companies who will still deny you.  You’re always going to have that. But I would like to widen your perspective a little bit. Just because Anthem denies you coverage doesn’t mean another one will.


There Are Many, Many Medicare Supplement Companies Out There!

In fact, according to page 27 of the Ohio Department of Insurance’s Medicare Supplement guide, there are 43+ Medicare Supplement companies just in Ohio. You have to think, these companies have diverse ways of evaluating the health of their potential policyholders. Chances are you will find one that will take a chance on you!


At our practices in Sidney and Vandalia, Ohio, we’ve had a lot of luck with the smaller companies who are trying to be more competitive. They are often more likely to take a look at your individual situation and seek clarification rather than put your application through the shredder at the first mention of a chronic disease. Then, after a close analysis of your situation, they make their final decision.


So don’t stay in a plan you hate.

So if you premium is too high, if the copays are frustrating, or if you just plain don’t like it, shop around! Just don’t cancel your current policy until you have another one in place.


If you want to shop supplement rates in your area without inputting any personal information, you can compare Medicare Supplement rates here.


Do You Want A Licensed Medicare Expert to Help You Shop A Supplement?

Seniormark is always here to help. We represent dozens of diverse, competitive companies in the area. Call us at 937-492-8800 and we will help you shop a plan for your unique needs and budget!


5 Ways to Keep Your Mind Active and Memory Sharp in Retirement

5 Ways to Keep Your Mind Active and Memory Sharp in Retirement

As inspiration for this post, I would like to thank my grandma. I called her to ask if she had any funny memory-loss moments she would like share. She paused.


“I would love to help you, but I can’t remember,” she said. Both laughing, I told her that was all I needed.


But jokes aside, this is a common problem for retirees. It’s not a problem you can prevent entirely, but by keeping your mind active, you can help keep your memory sharp. A body in motion tends to stay in motion, and a mind at work continues to work properly.


This is why soon-to-be retirees should think of ways they will engage their brains. Here are 5 ideas to get you started.


  1. Read More—and Do It Online, Too!

Reading stretches your mind. It forces you to wrestle with new ideas. It is a true mental workout. A Mayo Clinic study confirms it: people who reported reading magazines were 30% less likely to develop memory loss! Interestingly enough, in the same study, they also found that “people who used a computer once a week or more were 42% less likely to develop memory and thinking problems than those who did not”. So why not do both at once and read online? It looks like you’re already taking this advice!


  1. Play Another Hand of Cards.

An occasional game of crazy eights with your grandkids might not be the most beneficial (especially if you’re letting them win), but competitive card games with old friends may just do the trick. In fact, in AARP’s article “A Bridge to Brainpower,” they make a compelling case for why playing bridge is a fun way to stay mentally sharp. How?


Of course, a lot of it has to do with the challenge, the strategy, and the problem solving the game exercises. But it also has a lot to do with the social interaction the game requires (which brings me to my next point).


  1. Keep In Touch With Family, Friends, and the Community.

Call a friend you haven’t talked to in a while. Invite the neighbors over for a cookout. Join a bible study at church.  A gym. A club. Anything. Social interaction will not only make you happier, it also keeps your mind active, preventing memory loss.


Research conducted by the Harvard School of Public Health suggests that (what they call) “social integration” may have a positive affect on memory decline. So as you approach retirement, be thinking of ways that you can be involved in others’ lives.


  1. Keep Learning.

You don’t have to crack open the dull textbooks again. I’m not talking about academics. I’m talking about developing a lifestyle that craves to know more and try new things. Because—according to Brain Fitness Strategies—the process of learning grows new brain cells. Don’t just settle with maintaining; grow as much as you can in retirement. Pick up a hobby. Cook up some new, challenging recipes.  Or (Cycling back to the first tip), maybe read a bit. It will do you good.


  1. Work Part-Time.

Work? Retirement? For those about to retire, it might seem like these words should never be in the same sentence. Not so. A lot of retirees are working part time, and not just for the extra buck (although that’s a perk).


This might be why: “Data from the United States, England and 11 other European countries suggest that the earlier people retire, the more quickly their memories decline,” says New York Times journalist, Gina Kolata.


Now I’m not saying you should keep your stressful office job or spend one more backbreaking minute on the factory floor, but picking up a casual part-time job might be beneficial…to both your pocketbook and your mind.


Above All…Make Memories!

But regardless of what you do to keep your mind active, do something you enjoy. With a little bit of thought and creativity, I know that you can kill two birds with one stone…improving your memory and making memories all at the same time.

Turning 65 and not sure what you have to do? Sign up for one of our “Welcome to Medicare Workshops” at .

Why Dental Plans Aren’t Worth Their Weight in Premium For Retirees

Why Dental Plans Aren’t Worth Their Weight in Premium For Retirees

If you’re coming off your employer plan and onto Medicare, you might have been surprised to find out that neither Medicare nor Medicare Supplements cover most routine dental services. So I understand why you might find it quite attractive to get on a dental plan in addition to Medicare.   After all, who else will insure your million-dollar smile?


But allow me to reason with you. Because I believe that—in most cases—a dental plan just isn’t worth it.  Don’t believe me?  Using the pictured plan as an example, give me a few minutes to explain.


Scaling Benefits, Depleting Value

Way back when, Dental Plans had much better benefits. Their maximum benefits started on day one and continued until you dropped the plan.  But people abused it.  They got on a plan when they found out they needed a major surgery, let the insurance company foot the bill, and then cancelled the plan, getting away with no more than $30-40 in out-of-pocket costs.


The insurance companies needed to get smart if they were going to make any money.  So what did they do?  They fought fire with fire, and introduced scaling benefits.  Now most plans do not grant you full benefits until much later, after you paid your dues in premiums.  In the example below, the full benefits aren’t granted until 2 years.  In other words, not until you spend $800 in premiums!  The only thing the plan pays in full on day one is preventative services such as cleanings and exams.


Maximum Benefits

Here’s where a dental plan can really get you: the maximum benefits per calendar year is $1000.  This means you will never squeeze anymore than one grand out of them per year, no matter how long you’ve paid into the plan.


So what do you pay in premiums per year for this plan?  Let’s crunch the numbers.  $33.71/ month X 12 months per year = $404.52.  So, for all intents and purposes,  you pay about $400.  Consider this:  if you put the money you would’ve paid in premiums into a savings account, you would cover the maximum benefits in 2.5 years.  So—as long as you don’t expect to spend well over $1000 in 2.5 years—why would you bother with a dental plan?  For most people, it is just not reasonable.


You might’ve notice that you can upgrade your maximum benefits to $2000 dollars for an extra $7.61 in monthly premium.  But did you notice the fine print?  Without squinting, you probably didn’t.  So let me help you out with the gist: despite the upgrade, major services will still not exceed $1000.  In other words, for the services that actually have a chance of exceeding $1000 like dentures and oral surgery, the benefit limit is the same.


What to Do Instead

If you are still concerned about paying for routine checks, I would recommend telling the dentist you don’t have insurance and asking about “network pricing.”  A lot of times they are willing to cut the price (as much as 50% for exams and cleanings).


And if you are still concerned about major services that are going to cost up to $1000 or more, I recommend saving up what you would’ve paid in premium to put into a savings account.  In 2.5 years, you will have a thousand dollars of self-insurance for that million- dollar smile.


Need help with your retirement transition? Seniormark is here to help! Call us at 937-492-8800 for a free consultation.

A Side-by-Side Comparison of Medicare Advantage and Medicare Supplements

A Side-by-Side Comparison of Medicare Advantage and Medicare Supplements

When it comes to Medicare, you only have two big options. That’s it.

The piles of mail you’ve been receiving from various agents as you approach 65 do not represent hundreds of choices. There are only 2 ways to get your Medicare coverage.

First, I hope you have already signed up for Medicare (If not, hop on over to our blog titled “What Is the Fastest Way to Sign Up For Medicare? to take care of that, then come back and read the rest of this!).

The first way is just to stick with original Medicare—Parts A and B. Then you need what is known as Medicare Supplement Insurance, named as such because it “supplements” Medicare, filling in the gaps of what Medicare doesn’t cover.

The other option, however, is to get a Medicare Advantage Plan. This is an alternative to Original Medicare provided through private insurance companies that have contracted with Medicare. Although you still have to sign up for Parts A and B to be eligible, this replaces Medicare as the primary payer of your claims.

Choosing one or the other comes down to what’s most important to you. You can’t have both! What I am going to do is hold both of these options up to the light, side-by-side, so you can see clearly the strengths and weaknesses of each.

Check it out:

Medicare Supplement



  1. Minimal Out-of-Pocket Spending

You won’t have much coinsurance or copays with a Supplement. Most of it is covered.


  1. Predictability

They are also fairly consistent from year to year. They do creep up in premium (see our blog “Beat the Medicare Supplement Creep”, but they rarely leap! The benefits are guaranteed to stay the same.


  1. Out-of-State Coverage

Supplements cover you the same whether you are in your home state or out. Vacation homes? Extensive trips? No big deal. You’re covered.


  1. No Networks

You are free to use any doctor or hospital that accepts Medicare without sacrificing your coverage.




  1. Higher Premium

An in-the-ballpark average Supplement price is about $110 per month premium. This is higher than most Advantage Plans.


  1. No Drug Plan

Drug plans are not built in. You have to get a stand-alone drug plan, which cost an average of $34.10 per month in 2016.


Medicare Advantage



  1. High Out-of-Pocket Spending

Advantage plans have more of a pay-as-you-go approach. Higher copays, coinsurance, and unexpected costs are common.


  1. Unpredictability

Since Advantage plans are funded by government subsidy, benefits and premium costs tend to vary from year to year as a result.





  1. Out-of-State Coverage…Sometimes

Only in the case of emergency will you receive coverage out of your home state. Other than that, you’re on your own.


  1. Networks

They have them…networks of preferred hospitals and doctors. If you don’t use those preferred providers, you might have less coverage or—depending on the plan—no coverage at all.



  1. Low to No Premium

The average premium is somewhere around 60 dollars a month. Some are even free!


  1. Built-in Drug Plan

The vast majority of Advantage plans include a drug plan. No hassle or extra premium for you!

As you can see, the Medicare Supplement route is more costly, but there are a lot of benefits that give you more peace of mind and—all in all—less hassle.

On the other hand, the Medicare Advantage route is more economic, but it has fewer benefits, leading to unexpected costs and stress.

But both do their jobs. They both limit the potentially high out-of-pocket spending that is left by Medicare alone. Whatever you choose, don’t leave yourself vulnerable. Medicare alone is never a good idea!

Turning 65 soon and not sure what to do? Click here to sign up for our free Medicare workshop. No high-pressure sales pitches here, just in-depth discussion about the ins and outs of Medicare!


10 Medicare Terms To Get You Started

10 Medicare Terms To Get You Started

If you’ve ever done research in your life, you know that knowledgeable people sometimes overdo it. They use words that only other life-long Medicare experts would know.


And when you ask them to explain, what do they do? Use even bigger and scarier words to describe the ones you didn’t understand in the first place. Our philosophy: Never use a big word, when a singularly un-loquacious and diminutive linguistic expression will do the trick.


Over our 19 years of helping retirees, it has served us well. Now we are here to pass our knowledge onto you in words you understand. To get started, here are 10 commonly used terms:

1. Medicare

At the top of the list, I like to kick-it-off with the basics. Medicare is a government-run health care program for those over 65. It is also for younger people with disabilities or kidney failure, but its primary concern is to serve the older generation.

2. Medicaid

This is often confused with Medicare, but they are completely different programs. Although they both serve the same purpose (to provide health insurance), Medicaid is for people with low income. There is a chance that you might be eligible for both programs at the same time.

3. Medicare Beneficiary

This is you. Or if you haven’t signed up yet, it will be you very soon. A Medicare beneficiary is a person enrolled in Medicare, receiving Medicare benefits.

4. Initial Enrollment Period (IEP)

The IEP is made up of 3 parts: the 3 months before you turn 65, your 65th birthday month, and the 3 months after. This 7-month window is the time that most people should sign up for Medicare. If you miss your IEP, it could lead to costly penalties. So pay attention. Like all time, those 7 months will fly by!

5. Part A

Medicare is divided up into 4 parts (A, B, C, and D). And Part A is your inpatient care. It includes nursing care, hospice, and some home health services. But—for the most part—it is coverage for when you are officially checked-in at a hospital.

6. Part B

Part B is exactly the opposite of Part A. It is your outpatient care, including lab tests, medically necessary supplies, and various screenings. To keep simple, Part B is care received while checked-out of the hospital.

7. Original (Traditional) Medicare

This one is simple. Whenever someone refers to original (or traditional) Medicare, they are referring to Parts A and B together.

8. Part C (Medicare Advantage)

Medicare Advantage is an alternative to original Medicare offered through private insurance companies that have contracted with Medicare. In other words, they replace Medicare as your health insurance provider. About 1 in 4 people choose Medicare Advantage, according to the Reader’s Digest. To find out the advantages and disadvantages of Part C, click here.

NOTE: You still have to sign up for Parts A and B to be eligible for Part C.

9. Part D

Part D is your drug plan. It covers your prescription medications. Also offered through private insurance companies, almost everyone signs up for Part D in addition to original Medicare (Parts A and B).

10. Medicare Supplement Insurance

A supplement is fondly nicknamed a “Medigap plan.” It is referred to this way because it “fills in the gaps” of what Medicare Parts A and B doesn’t cover on its own. Without it, you leave yourself quite vulnerable. There is no limit to what you could spend in uncovered health care costs!

That should be enough to get you started on this often-overwhelming journey of Medicare planning. As you continue to learn more and plan your retirement, we are committed to keeping you up-to date and informed…in words you can understand. How did we do? Leave us a comment below to pose any questions or concerns!


Turning 65 soon and confused about Medicare? Click here to sign up for our free Medicare workshop. No high-pressure sales pitches here, just in-depth discussion about the ins and outs of Medicare! We put it into words you can understand.



4 Ways to Make Exercise Fun and Get Healthy in Retirement

4 Ways to Make Exercise Fun and Get Healthy in Retirement

If you are concerned about your health as you approach retirement, you are definitely not alone. According to a Merill Lynch Retirement Study, 81% of respondents reported that health is one of the most important ingredients for a happy retirement.


Sure, an excellent way to take charge of your health is to exercise, but sometimes the last thing you want to do is set foot on the treadmill or in the gym. Exercise doesn’t seem like much fun…


Which is why you need to make it fun! This is my recommendation: instead of grudgingly conjuring up the will power to do exercises you hate, instead of dragging your feet to the gym, muttering the adage “it’s good for me”, why not craft a regiment that you actually look forward to each and every day?


Don’t believe it’s possible? Here are 5 ideas that might change your mind!

1.  Tie Exercise to a Goal—and Not a Goal Weight Either

And for you older men out there, I am not referring to your blood pressure or cholesterol settling in on the magic numbers either. No, I’m talking about a life goal. Instead of making exercise merely about getting healthy, make it about accomplishing something you’ve always wanted to accomplish. For instance, have you ever wanted to…

  • Hike in all 59 National Parks?
  • Take a week to bike across your state?
  • Finally clean out that attic or shed?

You can even sign up for a Relay for Life or another exercise-related fundraiser to help a good cause reach their goals!

Whether it gives you a sense of personal satisfaction, curbs your appetite for adventure, or helps someone in need, don’t make your goal about how many calories you’re burning; make it about the life you’re leading!

2.  Join The Right Crowd…

Unlike most high school peer pressure, peer pressure as you age can be a wonderful encouragement. And it can certainly help you keep active. Think sports leagues. Think hiking groups. Think dance classes. Check online or at a fitness center near you. And if you can’t find one, take a lesson from Jake Chesson, and start one! Being a part of a group will help you stay consistent in your exercise routine, of course. But as you develop friendships and a community, I bet you’ll find yourself enjoying it as well!

3.  …Or Just The Right Person

Don’t like crowds? Then use your exercise time to reconnect with just one person you love. Take your spouse out for a long walk by the lake or—if you are lucky enough to live near one—the beach. Exercise with your sister or your brother or a friend you haven’t seen in ages. You can even choose to play a game with a grandkid like kickball, tag, or even old school hopscotch. The Lord knows it takes a lot of energy to keep up with them!

4.  Incorporate Exercise into a Hobby!

Do you have a knack for building things? Then stop by Lowe’s and get started! Have you ever tried golf? Why not try 9 holes without a golf cart? Want fresh fruits and vegetables to complement your healthy lifestyle of exercising? Work up a sweat while planting a garden.


The point is you shouldn’t make exercise about exercise. Instead, you should infuse physical activity into your lifestyle, your goals, your hobbies, and the people you love most. It may take a bit of thought and creativity to find physical activities that you are passionate about intrinsically, but once you find them, exercise will cease to be drudgery. Your exercise will make your heart thump in more ways than one.


Turning 65 soon and not sure what to do? Click here to sign up for our free Medicare workshop. No high-pressure sales pitches here, just in-depth discussion about the ins and outs of Medicare!