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Old 15-06-2007, 01:57   #16
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Interesting

Really interesting post, specially for all of us looking forward to a loong sailing season in our life (I am "still" 44).

In Spain, regardless of the fact it's a peninsula and there's sea all around, there are not many sailors. Not to mention the average experience of sailors.

I spend a couple of weeks every year in Vigo. Vigo is a city in Rias Bajas, if you look at the map of Spain, North western corner is a coast full of fiord-like shore (dont know the word in english, sry ). And is a very common point for sailors comming from northern Europe to the Med (brits, dutch, germans, french... all countries) to take a rest there and visit the magnificent landscape (and restaurants, of course). Before continuing south to Gibraltar.

The point is, when spring time comes, you see during almos all summer, these 28 to 32 footers comming with sixty-something year old couples, who have sailed through the bay of Biscay and go cruising on their own. Its a small crew and certainly mature.

For me its an inspiration. First because you appreciate the value of seamanship. Its not allways about fisical strenght, or youth. Maybe this coud be an issue in an extreme condition, but their canvas is not such a big deal. They sail seaworthy bluewater cruisers, aging but robust and well kept.

They cross bay of Biscay. It's true they do it in springtime and summer, but its common sense not to do it in winter (Nobody tries that).

And, the most important. You can feel they enjoy. Their lives are fulfilled with the joy of the portuguese trades blowing into their sails as they see land and men pass by, taking all these pictures with them in their hearts.

Thats definately an excellent way to spend your time. And they have lots of it. They are time millionaires. I hope to have my chance.

Rog
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Old 15-06-2007, 11:14   #17
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At 59 and having undergone a hip replacement about one year ago (and still recuperating) I did come to some conclusions about "my" ageing and sailing. First due to reduced activity of my deteriorating hip I gained a lot of weight, throw in the six months post surgery hobbling around and I gained more weight. At five foot ten inches and a bit, I was pushing 250 lbs. I knew this wasn't healthy and I knew it would impact on my latter in life, including comfortably moving around a pitching sailboat.

As soon as my leg would allow it, I started a walking regime and restricted my caloric intake. Now I'm down to 220 lbs, still not a healthy weight, and I will drop more. Over the years, I have learned one thing about weight loss. If I focus on losing weight, I gain it back because as soon as I hit my target goal, its party time. I have now concluded that if I focus on life style instead, a healthy life style, the weight will take care of itself. By focusing on life style instead of weight loss, I am adopting a new "forever" form of living life. I had to come to two conclusion that have helped me: 1) life is more than just about eating; I can still have fun and not over eat 2) hunger is a feeling not a disease and just because I'm hungry a couple of hours a day, life still goes on.

Lastly, putting aside some retched genetic factors, more and more studies are finding that eating only two thirds of a person's daily caloric intake extends life amazingly long - something the vegetarians do naturally.

I also have come to the conclusion that I may have to switch to a power boat in my mid-70's if I feel the physical challenge of sailing becomes too much. So I figure I have around 15 years of good sailing left and I'm now slowly trying to convince my wife that we should purchase a sailboat in the Mediterranean when we both retire and take it from there. I hear some wines calling my name.

The place mentioned in the above post in Spain sounds like a lovely place to become a wino (thought to be honest I don't drink that much, but I like a challenge). Despite all the doom and gloom about our planet, its an incredible privilege to be living in our times when distant sailing is no longer a Joshua Slocum challenge. It seems it would be a waste of a life not to see some of what our planet and peoples have to offer; and to sip some wines and smell some flowers along the way.
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Old 15-06-2007, 12:04   #18
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I have a few tips on weight loss for you (drifting the thread). First, don't believe any hype. There are only two things that control your weight: Calories you take in and calories you burn.

The more things you eat that have white flour, sugar, incredible amounts of fats, etc... the more you will have to work your butt off to burn all those calories. The reason those foods require so much more working out is that you have to eat so much more of them to feel full. Things with more fiber fill you up more, but give you fewer calories. Things with less require you to eat more to feel full. It's virtually impossible (even going to the gym all the time) to burn off what many Westerners eat in a day when they sit behind a desk and work.

The key is not to eat so little you are hungry... eat until you are full... but eat the right things and keep a general idea about how many calories you are eating in a day. If you eat so little you are hungry, you will never be able to stick to the diet for the rest of your life (ALL diets should be for the rest of your life) If you feel that pinch of hunger between meals that aren't satisfying, just grab a few peanuts to tide you over (and I mean 10 or so).

You can make it a very comfortable lifestyle... just stop eating sugary things, stop eating white breads, pastas and flours, and stop eating any type of fast food or restaurant food. Instead, eat breakfasts that are rich in whole grains (oatmeal, muffins with low sugar made from whole wheat flour, a piece of toast or two from bread with an ample amount of fiber and no white flour).

We found a new meal between lunch and dinner we call "dunch." It consists of eating as much as you damn well please and then some, but it's your only meal of the day. It works wonders for losing weight and still feeling full. It's also good on the wallet. We eat a light, healthy breakfast as mentioned above, and then around 2PM, we eat a meal the likes of a king, eating as much as we want. This brings your total caloric intake down dramatically, since you are skipping a meal, but it sure doesn't feel like it! After you stuff yourself (on something low in carbs, sugar and bad fats) at 2 or 3PM, you will find that you can't eat dinner and will just want possibly a small snack like popcorn or something before bed. This drops your daily caloric intake way down and allows you to stay trim even if you can't get in every single hour at the gym. Give it a try.

But above all else... read lables, count calories, and don't go out to eat.

I am 5'11" and weigh 160lbs. My wife is 5'1" and weighs about 100lbs. We both get a reasonable amount of exercise, but keep the same size we were in high school through eating right.

I got a gut this winter from over snacking on brownies and lost it during the 2 week trip we took from Jersey to Maine. How? The exercise of sailing combined with eating as described above.

Lastly, you can still have very rich sugary snacks here and there... just be smart about it. A brownie should be a 2"x3" square MAX and should contain no hydrogenated oils. Same goes for cookies, pudding, or any other high sugar and fat exception. Make it from scratch to keep trim and healty.

Ok.... sorry for the long post. Just thought I'd drop these proven methods of keeping weight under control into the thread since you had talked about it. Hope some of it helps. I also know a guy from college who was 6'2 and 320lbs when we started as a freshman. In a single summer, he ran every day and didn't eat. He weighed 185-190 after that summer and stayed there for the last 15 years. How? He ate like I said above and did a fair amount of exercise.
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Old 15-06-2007, 13:49   #19
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I've read of the one meal a day approach, eat all you want, but that's it - this sounds like sacrifice to me. My approach is another well known one, nibble through the day. Interesting you brought up peanuts, I use this gambit a lot, but a handful, not 10.

A typical day will go like this, coffee to start, cup and a bit; this will fill me up but not for long. Then a handful of peanuts, two hours latter, a banana, two hours latter more peanuts, two hours latter one sandwich with only lettuce and tomato and diet miracle whip (no butter); then a lighter supper, often meat and a salad and some fruit. And fruit for a latter snack; this works amazingly well. I do get hungry but usually only for about 30 minutes, not to bad.

I have also increased my walking to an hour and a bit of to a wonderful park by the ocean, in the fjord where I live. I can look at the ships at anchor, sailboats sailing, and power boats creating wakes. My dog is a real swimmer and will go in for about 20 minutes solid.

But for my summer weight lose program, you will discover it in this thread:

Sgt Preston - off to the Yukon

Cheers.
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Old 15-06-2007, 14:39   #20
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Again, If you are cruising, row the dinghy ashore. Walk when you get there. There's enough exercise available on a sailboat to keep anyone fit and healthy.
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Old 18-06-2007, 23:12   #21
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I believe (and hope) that boat life and the physical hardships involved actually help stave off the "frail old" stage through activity and forced exercise. Being in the "old young" category myself (birth year 1971), I can't be too sure, but I have never felt as spry as I do now since I was about 21 yrs old. It works to reverse the clock when you are in the "old young" stage, so I'd imagine it would work in your favor as you age. In fact, there was a 70+ yr old lady in the slip next to me in Long Island years back. She was the boat owner and had guys coming out to go sailing with her that were in the 60+ range as well. She would toss around water jugs and do just every physical thing you could imagine and do it with agility. I suspected the agility was a result of her being physically active her whole life and avidy sailing. She also had a good outlook which helps they say as well.

As to the "go now" theory... I used to agree but now would actually have to disagree. We tried that. It sucks. Don't go unless you are ready finacially. There is nothing more heart breaking than re-fitting a boat for someone else's use using 9 months of your life (full time) and $23K. If you don't have the funds to buy a boat outright and have a HUGE wad of cash saved away, I wouldn't go at all. It just won't come together, no matter how frugal you are, since boat payments and breakdowns will put a crimp in your plans. You can't go anywhere outside of the USA (if a US citizen) without spending out money. There is the boat, food, entry fees, high cost of groceries (Caribbean), the enevitable breakdowns, etc.. etc...

No matter how frugal you are, you need to be quite financially sound to cruise. Don't "go now." It sounds great to an eager armchair sailor, but once you're out here... it really stinks to have the boat, the wife and everything you ever need in life to cruise but not to be able to afford to actually go and do it. You'll end up in purgatory - somewhere between cruising and working full time - and that's a very torturous place to be.

Best to find the $$ before you go.

PS: Warning does not apply to trust fund babies, people who inherit large sums, or who have portfolios and real estate boom cash. Just for regular people who have no assets and are working for a living.
Although I agree with some of the points for my own experience, I feel it unfair to generalize money, boat size and go now cruising. I have seen and met many go now cruisers on a small boat, which they could afford, go cruising for 2 and 3 years. Situations are not alays black and white...trust fund babies vs. less affluent people. I think attitude towards what you want out of life and what value you place on security and adventure have a lot to do with go now or wait. either decision is ok as long as you are ok with it. I certainly had to raise children before I could consider the adventure...Aloha
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Old 20-06-2007, 12:54   #22
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Go Now versus Go Later, waiting for riches...

I have always been of the Go Now mindframe. I never could afford to stay out forever but whenever I would run out of money I would come to the land and roll up my sleeves and earn enough money to go again.

I did learn something important, though, from the sailors who were able to go out and stay out and that is that they had marketable skills that they could use to extend their sailing days, often forever. They always had paid-for, free and clear boats and little or no debt but few sailors I know have much money in the bank. The usual amount saved is enough for one year or so, and then if they want to stay out longer they figure it out later.

But it is the skills part of it that was always important. They were able to do things that other boaters in anchorages around this part of the world (Florida, Bahamas, Caribbean) needed.

For example, they may have taken courses and gained certification in areas like diesel engines, air conditioning, marine electronics, carpenty, plumbing, watermakers, rigging, sail repair, setting up computers for email/WiFi/navigation, marine corrosion prevention, etc.

One couple I know very well made the best cinnamon rolls you would ever taste and sold and bargained them for money and other needed items, and it also made them very popular in every anchorage so the other boaters were quick to give them other work (based on their other skills) so they would stick around.

Other sailors I know, like me, would go out for as long as possible and then they'd go back to the land and re-enter the rat race to earn money for the cruising kitty and the next adventure.

The smartest sailors I knew were the ones who lived on far less than what they earned and saved and invested what was left. There is nothing sweeter than passive income coming in that you don't have to work for and that was always their main goal - earning money on their investments while they were out sailing.

I am not saying that everyone could do this but I have known far too many people who have earned money along the way to suggest that it can't be done.

Just my opinion, your mileage may vary.
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Old 13-01-2008, 09:41   #23
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I am a HUGE supporter of GO NOW! Live the dream while you can, because there's going to be a time when you'll be taking a handful of pills to keep the ticker going, the blood pressure in check, arthritis makes pulling on a halyard and sheet painful. Then you'll wish you'd bought that cute little sailboat and taken off when you could. When it comes time to take that last breath no one ever says "I wish I'd spent more time in the office."
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Old 13-01-2008, 14:03   #24
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Thank you so much Old Salt for the validation, because when I can no longer step onto the boat, or swing my leg over the Harley, or give the First Mate a thrill, I'll be finished right then and there. Until then, despite what others may think about it, I'm going for it (just as soon as I get my new shoulder. . .).
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Old 13-01-2008, 14:51   #25
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I'm going for it (just as soon as I get my new shoulder. . .).
Can you get them through Scheafer or Harken?
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Old 13-01-2008, 14:59   #26
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Boy, that would be sweet!
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Old 13-01-2008, 15:11   #27
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I'm '39 vintage. People in my family tend to live well into their nineties (some more) and because my dad was in his forites when I was born, I've had the pleasure of a lot of company who were "getting on." They taught me a lot of things. Never stop doing what you like to do and use your hands and arms and feet like you always have "there is plenty of time to slow down after 90" I heard many times. And my greatgrandmother, who was close to a hundred at the time (her husband was wounded at Gettysburg) talked about her neighbor who was "just a child" (75 or so) and couldn't work a can opener. "She's always been a lazy bones." So my take on it is this: use it or lose it. Mechanical winches are great exercise. So is a portable rowing machine. So is crawling and stooping and bending all over. The shot of adrenalin we get when the wind is shredding our sails, is a healthy stimulent. And there is one more factor, a seventy year old now is like an 50 year old forty years.
Keep on keeping on.
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Old 13-01-2008, 15:44   #28
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that's a much-appreciated attitude!
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Old 13-01-2008, 16:00   #29
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Age shall not weary them nor the years condemn--

Because now we have access to HGH and some really good vegetable anti-oxidants and with a bit of luck you will still be dangerously active at ninety. HGH is soon to be available more cheaply as its patent expires soon--if not already. Find a doctor without his head jammed up his ass or full of religious dogma--yes, there are some minor risks--but old age is a risk in itself and we already KNOW for certain that it is terminal--

Grow old along with me--the best is yet to be--
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Old 14-01-2008, 04:05   #30
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”... I did learn something important, though, from the sailors who were able to go out and stay out and that is that they had marketable skills that they could use to extend their sailing days, often forever. They always had paid-for, free and clear boats and little or no debt but few sailors I know have much money in the bank. The usual amount saved is enough for one year or so, and then if they want to stay out longer they figure it out later ...
... Other sailors I know, like me, would go out for as long as possible and then they'd go back to the land and re-enter the rat race to earn money for the cruising kitty and the next adventure ...”
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"I am a HUGE supporter of GO NOW! Live the dream while you can, because there's going to be a time when you'll be taking a handful of pills to keep the ticker going, the blood pressure in check, arthritis makes pulling on a halyard and sheet painful ..."
Pretty nearly describes our story.
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