Stay Vibrant in Retirement
It's worth the effort to be both physically and financially fit when you retire.
Plan early so you can enjoy your retirement to the fullest. A good retirement nest egg, coupled with regular exercise, a strong network of friends and connections within your community will help you feel vibrant.
Staying active is retirement is one of the keys to enjoying it. And continuing prudent financial practices can help as you embark on this new phase of your life.
This one-two approach to retirement is something of a necessity for today's retirees. According to the Center of Disease Control the average US like expectancy now tops 80 years, so remaining physically and mentally active -- and having the means to stay that way -- are essential to a long active retirement.
Sarah Cross Mills of Portland, Maine and Sharon Valentine of Denton, Texas, both 67, make a conscious effort to attend to both aspects of their lives. Here's their advice:
- Keep yourself healthy - Get daily exercise. Cross Mills exercises at the gym six morning a week -- which she believes helped her overcome breast cancer two years ago. Valentine either walks, works out at the gym or plays golf (right outside her door) everyday. "I'm not great, but I enjoy it, " she says. HEALTHY FINANCIAL TIP: Save money on a fitness club membership by taking aerobics or yoga classes at a local community center.
- Make new friends and reconnect with old ones. - "When you're new to a place, it's important to push yourself beyond your normal boundaries to meet people," says Cross Mills, who relocated from San Francisco in early 2010. She found college alumni, joined organizations such as the Maine Women's Fund and networked as if she was seeking a job. Valentine sought friends with positive energy. "I made a list of all the people I wanted to reconnect with," Valentine says. "That was one of my goals that first year. You just pickup, connect with family, friends and long-lost love connections. HEALTHY FINANCIAL TIP: When engaging is social media of any kind examine the information you are sharing, and who you are sharing it with.
- Learn and experiencing new things. - Finding hobbies and activities that keep you engaged can mean working part-time or volunteering to support your passions. HEALTHY FINANCIAL TIP: Working even a part-time job can help you preserve your savings.
- Plan ahead so you can relax. - Valentine, who worked in finance before retiring, made the maximum contributions to her 401(k) plan, bought a long-term health care policy and sold ger home before she left her job. That way, she could build -- and pay off -- her dream retirement home. HEALTHY FINANCIAL TIP: Find ways to reward yourself for a lifetime of savings -- but continue to practice the solid financial habits that got you there in the first place.