The trick to New Year’s resolutions as you age

Five easy ways to stick with yours at Seabrook

Julia Collins
January 12, 2017

Think back over the years. How many New Year's resolutions have you made? And how many have you kept? 

Make this the year you keep your resolutions. Life at Seabrook in Tinton Falls, N.J., makes keeping these top five New Year's resolutions easy. Meet community members who are living out their retirement goals. 

1. Fitness

Lifetime fitness enthusiast Lori Orr exercises frequently with weights, cardio, water aerobics, and tai chi classes at Seabrook. Of the weekly yoga class, Lori says, "Any level can participate. The stretching is done in such a relaxed way that it keeps you mobile. That is important at our age. It keeps you younger than you would ever be if you sat around all day."

Lori says yoga has become more beneficial to her over the years. "As you [get older], your balance isn't as good; your joints are stiffer." The practice of one-legged standing postures, like tree pose, helps to improve balance, decreasing the risk of injury from falls. 

Other fitness enthusiasts, like Culver Hayes, Joe Koenig, and Bob Zitch, attribute Seabrook's maintenance-free lifestyle to their ability to stay so dedicated to their fitness routine. Without having to put the fitness center aside for home repairs or upkeep, they're able to stick to a daily routine. 

The fitness center offers a wide variety of group fitness classes to appeal to more people. In addition to yoga, residents can participate in Zumba, Stretch 'n' Tone, aqua aerobics, and more each week.

For those who prefer a more individual approach, the fitness center provides specialized age-appropriate machines, free weights, and personal training. 

Is this the year you stick with a fitness routine?

2. Stress-free living

Seabrook is known for its maintenance-free lifestyle, where all home and yard maintenance is no longer a concern. However, many people don't realize that Seabrook also promotes stress relief through fitness and wellness classes like meditation, tai chi, and qigong, as well as spa treatments like massage.

While meditation can be beneficial at any age, it is particularly helpful for older adults. Meditation aids memory, assists digestion, activates the "happy" part of the brain, and decreases long-term stress from various sources like chronic illness, disability, or the loss of a spouse. 

Is this the year you let go of stress and anxiety? 

3. Financial security

Before Maureen Sullivan and her husband Tom moved to Seabrook from Village Grande, a 55-plus community in Holmdel, they compared costs by listing all living expenses in two columns. 

"If you're honest with yourself and put down everything you are paying, Seabrook's [monthly service package] is a very welcome fee," she says. 

The predictable monthly fee, which corresponds to the size of each apartment home, includes all home maintenance, professional landscaping, property taxes, 24/7 security, utilities, a flexible meal plan, and use of all amenities like the indoor pool and fitness center. 

It also includes snow-clearing services in winter and year-round transportation to and from local destinations like the grocery store and doctors' offices. If the Sullivans need an electrician or plumber, one's there in minutes. "If you're in a house, you have to wait a couple of days," Maureen points out. 

When she was comparing costs, her list included big ticket items such as a new roof, windows, and a hot water heater, which can come as a surprise. 

Now Maureen and Tom have financial peace of mind. "We just got new windows and didn't pay a thing," Maureen says.

And because they don't have to worry about unexpected appliance repairs or big ticket items, they had funds to renovate their kitchen. 

Led by Custom Interiors Coordinator Linda Heintz, they removed two walls, added a backsplash, and installed a new countertop. "It was very reasonable, and the [workers] never left without cleaning up," she says.

Is this the year you secure your nest egg and solidify your budget? 

4. Proactive health

More than 96% of people who live at Seabrook take advantage of its on-site medical center. That number includes about 86% who use Seabrook's primary care physicians and 10% who use Care Pass. 

Care Pass allows residents who do not see a Seabrook primary care physician to use the medical center in an emergency without having to go through the hassle of transferring medical information.

Together, the on-site medical center, outpatient rehabilitation, and fitness and aquatics center create a well-rounded approach to health and wellness for those who live at the Tinton Falls community. It's peace of mind for some, a necessity for others, and a big benefit for everyone. 

"We changed our doctors to Seabrook physicians when we moved," says Maureen. "My husband and I have been in good health, but it's nice to know care is available if you need it."

Perhaps one of the most impressive efforts at Seabrook is the coordination of each community member's wellness or rehabilitation plan between on-site medical doctors, occupational and physical therapists, and the fitness center staff. 

Should anyone need additional care down the road, Seabrook's on-site continuing care neighborhood provides patient-centered short-term and outpatient rehabilitation, assisted living, skilled nursing, and memory care. As a fee-for-service community, people only pay for care they receive.

Is this the year you stay ahead of your health?

5. New hobbies

With more than 120 clubs and activities, Seabrook provides myriad opportunities for people to pursue interests they've always had, never knew they had, or never had time for. 

Marcia and Bill Rubin, who received the community's Most Outstanding Volunteer Effort Recognition (M.O.V.E.R.) Award in 2016, take advantage of Seabrook's many opportunities to stay active and engaged. 

Marcia has served as chairperson of the Resident Advisory Council's resident life committee, volunteers in Seabrook's TV studio, and assists in numerous other projects and activities on campus. 

Bill volunteers for the resident life department by helping with projects, designing flyers, and distributing information to resident mailboxes. He is also an active member of the Seabrook Veterans Club and coordinates collection drives for veterans in need. 

"Each interest group fills a different need and appeals to different people," says Volunteer Program Coordinator Judy Seger. 

Is this the year you learn a new skill or return to one of your favorite pastimes?