Westminster Canterbury Richmond: Making it Easy to Live Life Well

A beautiful mature black woman doing yoga.

What does healthy and fit mean to you? At Westminster Canterbury Richmond, we believe staying well means much more than physical fitness. True wellness means optimizing your health on every level, including all seven dimensions—intellectual, emotional, social, environmental, occupational, spiritual and physical.

Rooted in a culture of wellness, the Westminster Canterbury Richmond lifestyle inspires the mind, nurtures the spirit and strengthens the body. Discover your true potential by starting the journey toward optimal well-being right now in your own home. When you feel your best, you can live your best.

7 at-home steps toward achieving true wellness

Whether it’s transportation issues, weather conditions or a pandemic, sometimes it’s not possible to participate in wellness activities outside of the home. Although COVID-19 has certainly put a significant crimp in how we live our lives, it has also forced us to be innovative in creating new approaches and solutions. If you get stuck at home now, there’s no excuse not to maintain your health. Here are some steps you can take to strengthen your wellness without leaving your house.

1. Keep moving. It’s easy to fall into sedentary habits, and we encourage you to fight that urge. Exercise not only keeps you physically fit, but also it helps with balance, mobility and strength. Those wonderful endorphins lift your mood, increase your energy, relieve stress and reduce feelings of anxiety and depression. Today, there are many workout options available online and fitness apps for your phone. Residents at Westminster Canterbury Richmond can even participate in campus classes on our closed-circuit TV channels. So, find an exercise program that fits you (your physician can help you determine at what level to start) and spend at least 30 minutes a day exercising.

2. Hydrate! As we age, we lose our sense of thirst, but our bodies still need the replenishment of water. The recommendation is 64 ounces (eight 8-ounce glasses) a day. That can be hard to track. To make it easier, consider using a water bottle (22 ounces) and try to drink three each day. Make a habit of carrying it around with you and drinking in between meals.

3. Challenge your mind. Physical exercise helps keep our brains healthy, but to stay mentally sharp, we also have to exercise those brain cells. This becomes more important once you retire and no longer have the stimulation of a career. Use your new freedom and time to pursue your favorite passions, discover new interests, enroll in online classes, take up a musical instrument, learn a new language or do whatever excites you. Endless options exist online that you can try right from your own home. Residents at Westminster Canterbury Richmond have access to a wide selection of lectures and classes, plus an arts studio and woodworking shop all on-site.

4. Eat well. As we get older, our sense of smell and taste, metabolism and dietary requirements can change, but quite frequently our eating habits don’t. And with so many different dietary recommendations and conflicting nutritional information out there, it’s confusing to know what to eat. If you have a health-related diet recommended by your physician, stick to it. If not, some simple steps to follow are to watch your portion sizes, cut out junk food snacking, don’t eat when you’re not hungry and follow a diet of high fiber (vegetables, fruits, whole grains) and lean protein. These foods will keep you energetic while also aiding slow digestion. At Westminster Canterbury Richmond, healthy eating is easy. Our talented chefs cut out the guesswork by creating culinary options that are nutritious and delicious.

5. Sleep well. Age can also impact our sleep, making it lighter and more fragmented. But a good night’s rest is still important and affects many aspects of our health. Make an effort to develop good bedtime rituals. Exercise a few hours beforehand and then, an hour before going to bed, do something calming such as taking a relaxing bath or shower, listening to soothing music or reading a book. Artificial light suppresses the production of melatonin (the hormone responsible for causing sleepiness). So turn off the TV, computer and all other devices and use low-wattage bulbs. Make sure you have a comfortable mattress and your bedroom is dark and cool.

6. Stay connected. This can be difficult without leaving your home but is still doable. In addition to calling family and friends, reach out to old acquaintances or volunteer for letter writing projects (i.e., troops serving overseas, World War II veterans, nursing home residents). Play virtual games with friends—so many choices are available.

7. Stay positive – Let go of stressful issues beyond your control and focus on the good things in your life. Watch upbeat movies and shows. Read uplifting books and spiritual writings. Find things that make you laugh. Fill your days with things that make you happy.

Take it to the next level

At Westminster Canterbury Richmond, we not only encourage residents to practice wellness at home but we also make it easy to raise overall fitness and well-being to a new level. Our vibrant community is designed to help residents learn the importance of a well-balanced lifestyle and increase the awareness of whole-person wellness.

With a variety of exercise classes, you’ll find there is something for everyone at every level. Take a brisk walk around our beautiful grounds, join us on a walking trip or go for a bike ride. However you choose to exercise, our massage services are great for smoothing out any kinks or sore muscles. We also have lectures and workshops on health issues selected by a committee of residents along with our experienced wellness team. Innovative programming includes fall prevention, brains and balance, mind/body, dance-based fitness and more.

There’s plenty to exercise your brain as well, from the Dakim BrainFitness program, lectures and classes to current event discussions, book clubs, Bible study and more. Experience the art of living as you get creative in our McGue-Millhiser Arts Studio, Gordon Woodworking Shop, raised garden plots and sun-filled greenhouses. Share your time and talents in a wide variety of volunteer opportunities, including our Child Development Center, Shops on Main, Sara Belle November Theater, Mary Morton Parsons Health Center, resident board and committees, and charitable organizations in the surrounding community.

In this friendly, active community, social wellness comes naturally. Cultural, intergenerational and fun activities abound. Performances in our Sara Belle November Theater, live music and dancing, cookouts on the Ellipse, themed bridge parties, croquet, cornhole, bocce ball, pickleball, chess, campus-wide parades and anniversary celebrations are some of the many on-site activities. Plus, there are excursions to baseball games, museums, shopping, historic homes, local restaurants, strawberry picking, boat tours and more.

New Vital Living Center

Westminster Canterbury Richmond is growing, and our new Vibrancy! expansion includes a state-of-the-art Fitness and Aquatic Center. In planning for the Vital Living Center, our goal is to encourage socialization, provide education, help residents be proactive, offer programs and let residents determine their individualized priority and create a destination.

Like everything at Westminster Canterbury Richmond, all is designed to inspire you to live your greatest potential.

Experience the secrets of wellness firsthand

More than just a buzzword, wellness at Westminster Canterbury Richmond is a lifestyle and an intentional pursuit, one we approach with much enthusiasm. Come for a visit and discover all the possibilities of a wellness-enriched life. To schedule a tour or attend one of our upcoming events, call 877-277-9908.

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