IN February, here in Las Vegas, it is high desert winter. It is characterized by cold nights and cool windy days. Night time temperatures are in the 30’s with day time highs generally in the 50’s. I had two outdoor Saturday adventures. That is, first a climb of Lone Mountain and second a drive/hike that included Rodgers Hot Springs and the Valley of Fire State Park.
Lone Mountain is in the sea of suburban roof tops near the north west corner of Vegas. It has a two mile circular trail around the edges of the mountain. The kicker is a near vertical trail to the summit. Up 600 to 3000 feet. At the summit you get a 360 degree view of everything everywhere.
The view from the Summit
The second adventure was a road trip. First stop was Rogers Hot Springs
Rodgers Hot Springs is inside Lake Mead Recreation area. It is a drive-up spot. It has rest rooms and covered picnic areas. The water temperature is 86 degrees year round. It makes a great break spot. I took a friend on this day trip so we had a break here. We had an hour canyon exploring walk. It made the trip into Valley of Fire State park even better.
Lake Mead as seen from Rodgers Hot Springs hike.
The Valley of Fire does not seemed to be named for the dessert heat but rather for its special red rock formations which are way more expansive than the popular Red Rock Canyon miles the the south west. It is a spectacular drive with hiking areas everywhere requiring a return trip. We completely enjoyed this trip. Here just couple of the photos:
Next: FEET, FORKS, AND FINGERS
This is how Dr. David Katz relates to the sky rocketing health issues in America and around the world. He is referencing what is well known to all of us. Feet refers to all people needing regular exercise or activity. Forks is about the importance of what we eat to run our bodies. Fingers is the importance of not smoking. He recognizes and is aware that most people know this, but the issues still exist. He says that the gap between what people know and what people do is the cause of 80% of disease and is preventable. This 80% of disease is what are called lifestyle related diseases. They are the biggies, most heart disease, most cancers, type II diabetes, and Alzheimer’s disease (the most common type of dementia). Dr. Katz says that our zip code not our genetic code is the more important factor in determining our longevity and health span. That is why they are described as lifestyle diseases. In an early career talk he highlighted 6 factors of health for longevity: 1. diet 2. exercise/activity 3. not smoking 4.sleep 5. stress 6. social factors/love.
These 6 things sound a great deal like the Blue Zone formula. I believe this road less traveled must be traveled for us the be healthy. To get motivation watch the 2017 Documentary What the Health again or maybe for the first time. It is on Netflix and other media too.
I received a gift book from my son; The Blue Zone American Kitchen. It is a coffee table style book with lots of good pictures. Besides good recipes, it is a historical account of early American ethic group diet before their eating was corrupted or lost. If you’d like to learn some cool longevity facts listen or watch Rich Rolls interview with Blue Zones Dan Buettner just below.
Finally, This month, a real world problem. I continue my concern with pollution and toxins in our environment. We all heard or read about the mess in New Palestine, Ohio. Of course in our country, it is now a political issue. It should be a right to life issue. Some people will get sick and die. What a mess. With that said, this week (2/23) in The Guardian, a liberal news paper in the UK, there was an article about “forever toxins”. It has map showing the areas in Europe and the UK that are polluted with PFAS. PFAS stands for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, it’s an umbrella term for a family of about 12,000 chemicals that are prized for their indestructible and non-stick properties. They are toxic. The mapped areas are massive. The “forever toxins” are detected in the air, water, soils, sediments, and rain. Yes, this life is terminal, but must we speed up the process and our own demies.
In the spirit, be healthy, Coach Brown