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Reflections Video Series: Secrets to Aging Well

Dec 12 2022
4 min read

From paying attention to their body when exercising, to the importance of meditation and mindfulness, Canyon Ranch experts share tips for aging well.

Our new Reflections video series turns the question we ask guests coming to Canyon Ranch—What leads you here?—on our experts.

In this episode, we sat down with three Canyon Ranch experts: Dan Marko, Senior Spiritual Wellness Provider at Lenox, Mary Cahilly, Mental Health & Wellness Therapist at Lenox, and Jeannie Riley Ortega Lead Senior Stylist & Make-Up Artist at Lenox to discuss the secrets to aging well and what balancing healthy living with age means.

For Dan, it's about understanding the value of limitations based on recovery time. For Mary, realizing that meditation and mindfulness are as important for healthy aging as movement and nutrition. For Jeannie, recognizing she can't do what she used to, be ok with that, and move into something different.

Watch the video above to hear their candid responses about aging and what they recognized in themselves and the steps they took to change their mindset and habits to embrace the journey.

Or, read the transcript below.

Canyon Ranch: What are the secrets to aging well?

Dan Marko, Senior Spiritual Wellness Provider:
When I started, I was a personal trainer and would work with people in their 40s, 50s, and 60s. And I'd push them hard, to be honest. They'd always say, "God, I'm really sore. I'm really sore." And say, "What are you talking about? Just quit being a baby and get back to work." But as I've aged, I've noticed, oh, my recovery time, it does extend itself. It requires more time, and I'm like, I don't regret anything that I was doing, but I find it humorous, and it's a reality that now I can, from personal experience, say to people, yeah. If you're here, don't do 15 classes in a day. You know, maybe do two or three." And notice what happens to you during class, the day after, and 48 hours after that because you'll need that recovery time as you age.

Mary Cahilly, Mental Health & Wellness Therapist:
When I was younger, I always thought that a healthy lifestyle was about what you ate and how you moved your body, which are absolutely critical. Then when I discovered meditation and mindfulness, I realized, oh my goodness. My thoughts matter a lot. And, so working with thoughts and what's going on inside has been something that, you know, absolutely has helped to shift my physical well-being and wellness. So I've trained my mind to stay, fit while aging by using mindfulness. And by mindfulness, I mean not just meditation but also being mindful of my surroundings. So, for example, as I came into work today, just looking for the color white, and how many whites did I see? And there's a lot. So just being aware helps to enliven our whole day and enrich us. The thing that has surprised me most about aging is that I love it.

Jeannie Riley Ortega, Lead Senior Stylist & Make-Up Artist:
Training my mind to mentally stay fit. That's tough because you think you're still 25-45, and then you look in the mirror and realize you're 50-something. I'm not gonna say on camera. But I have to shift my mind to realize I can't do what I used to do, and that's okay because now I'm gonna move it into something different that I can still do to be healthy and stay fit emotionally, physically, as well as mentally.

A headshot of Dan Marko

About the Expert

A headshot of Dan Marko

Dan Marko

MA, Senior Spiritual Wellness Provider

Dan helps guests explore how developing or deepening a spiritual practice can enhance personal and professional relationships. He provides individual consultations, group lectures, and workshops.

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