Introducing the Problem-Solving Strategy Challenge, the latest interactive brain exercise from Staying Sharp! Get started now.
by Carole Carson, AARP, October 27, 2008
Karina Wahlman, 46, of Penn Valley, Calif., doesn't typically put on her gym clothes when she wants to exercise. Instead, she puts on her work clothes and goes about cleaning stalls, loading hay, carrying grain, grooming horses, and teaching riding lessons—all of which take strength, stamina, and discipline.
Sometimes she puts on her riding clothes. Karina experiences a natural high when she's outdoors riding one of her eight horses. As an accidental by-product, Karina is also strengthening her leg and stomach muscles.
Karina's mother always advocated eating correctly—fruits and vegetables were a big part of family meals. A vegetable garden produced beans, tomatoes, and squash. Except for an occasional treat of ice cream, store-bought desserts were rare. As an adult, Karina tries to stick to this pattern.
Karina considers being around horses a natural, healthy therapy. "You are challenged," she said, "to build a relationship with another living being—a being that doesn't communicate verbally. Consequently, you learn to communicate and be sensitive to its ways. Riding and being around horses stretches you physically, mentally, and emotionally."
She recently purchased a Haflinger horse with beautiful eyes and a gorgeous creamy-white mane. This latest acquisition gets lots of hugs, kisses, and attention.
Her advice: "If, like me, you have a hard time being disciplined about doing your workout in a gym, you need to find an activity you truly enjoy. Plus, if you find the activity challenging and beneficial, chances are you'll make friends and end up building a fun social group as well."
Please leave your comment below.
You must be logged in to leave a comment.
Enter address, city, state, or ZIP code.
Driver Safety (0)
Tax Aide (0)
Entertainment & Dining (0)
Healthcare & Insurance (0)
Financial Services & Insurance (0)
Member Local Offers (0)
Visit the AARP state page for information about events, news and resources near you.
Members can save 35% on registration fees.
This tool helps you identify your pills by color, shape and markings.
Members can take a free confidential hearing test by phone.
AARP members receive exclusive member benefits & affect social change.
You are leaving AARP.org and going to the website of our trusted provider. The provider’s terms, conditions and policies apply. Please return to AARP.org to learn more about other benefits.
Your email address is now confirmed.
Manage your email preferences and tell us which topics interest you so that we can prioritize the information you receive.
Explore all that AARP has to offer.
In the next 24 hours, you will receive an email to confirm your subscription to receive emails
related to AARP volunteering. Once you confirm that subscription, you will regularly
receive communications related to AARP volunteering. In the meantime, please feel free
to search for ways to make a difference in your community at