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Use basic safety guidelines

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On Jan. 14, we went to the memorial service for a dear friend. His family, friends and neighbors are in shock. Bill had finished his chores Jan. 6 and gone for a bike ride. He got home, was ill in his front yard and a neighbor called 9-1-1. By the time his wife caught up with him at the hospital, he had joined his angels. He had just celebrated his 70th birthday and was the picture of good health. Else went on the recent Fall RV and Hiking trip to Mammoth Mountain. They hiked up to 7,000 feet. She dropped back to take some photos and was at the end of the line. Her husband turned around and she had collapsed. Two retired paramedics in the group could not revive her. Airlifted to the hospital, she was gone. Two close friends here went on a hiking trip to a favorite wilderness area and one fell ill. The other ran for help. One did not make it. Could these tragedies have been avoided? Hard to say. But the American Red Cross has taught some basic safety guidelines for decades. Some are: 1. Keep current with your medical checkups. Early detection is the best prevention. Never ignore ongoing symptoms, no matter how small. 2. Go with a buddy. To go out alone may have serious consequences. Don’t get in over your head(s). 3. Don’t overdo it. Most of us need to enjoy our regimen with caution, no matter what our level, and proceed carefully, observing our panting, fatigue or pain and slowing down when needed. You should be able to carry on a conversation while exercising on the trail or the track. Use extra care in your senior years. 4. All things in moderation and don’t smoke. 5. Learn CPR. It may save a life. 6. Share meals out with your companion. Ask the cook to use the healthiest ways of preparing your food, i.e. “Do you have brown rice?” Skip the fried foods, junk food and things in boxes. Strive for your proper weight. Eat more greens, and when you must cook veggies, stop while their colors are still bright. We are digging our way to our graves with our fork. 7. Exercise 150 minutes a week. Kaiser is now having the doctors ask their patients how much they exercise! 8. Tell your loved ones how much you care. As often as you can. 9. Cherish every minute of every day. Take nothing for granted. LINDA AND JOHN WILLIAMS, Lincoln (Linda is the Lincoln Hills Bosom Buddies founder)