A key reason I am disciplined about exercise is that I have a healthy fear of doing without it. I have seen an explosive, painful, heart attack in a man in an ER with a lot of fat around his belly, when I was a medical student. I still recall a prof in medical school who said obesity, in essence, increases the incidence of all disease. Exercise obviously can help keep the weight off. Power walking is my key exercise for aerobic conditioning.

But going beyond taking on flabbiness with power walking, I do resistance training, stretching, and tai chi. From what I have read, they are healthy habits. Not only are they beneficial but they are quite relaxing for me. As a result, I have a diminishing fear of loss as well as an increasing peace from my daily exercise.

Finally, as I am retired, the routine gives me more structure to my day. The structure in itself is soothing. As you can tell for a host of reasons you’ll find me in my tiny, home gym, six days a week.

On the flip side, the aerobic portion is as boring as watching paint dry, water boil or the trials for the olympic walking event. As a result I listen to podcasts, talks, etc. on the Web. Most are theological, some are psychological and others are neuroscientific. Some are all three. The exercise and listening add upbeat endorphins and meaningful knowledge to the winter of my life. It is in part the winter of my content.