Karen Dove Barr was a fifty-year-old, size 14 working mother when the last of her children grew up and abandoned her. All that remained was a 60 hour per week law practice and 3 bedrooms of furnishings rejected by the Salvation Army.
In an effort to fill the void Karen began exercising despite the fact that her timing and coordination were so bad she was a) kicked out of rhythm band in 2nd grade, b) invited out of the gym by an aerobics instructor in her thirties, c) advised to take up needlepointing by her golf teacher.
Karen tried running a few steps on a treadmill at a retirement center, but her husband told her just to walk, because she was too old.
In response Karen signed up for a 5-K (3.1 mile) race and had so much fun she couldn't wait to run again. She has raced regularly ever since in 5-Ks, 10-Ks, and finally the half-marathon (13.1 miles).
Although still no great athlete, running forced Karen to replace her wardrobe with size 6s. Her blood pressure and cholesterol remain at levels mostly seen in healthy twenty-year-olds. She regularly places in the top 3 in her age group, provided 3 or fewer ladies her age participate.
If she can do it, you can too. Her book explains how and adds advice from doctors, a personal trainer specializing in geriatric exercise, and a therapist who is also a gerontologist and a runner. Following the experts' advice will allow most aging non-athletes to become healthy runners.
The book covers dressing for running, survival without make-up, staying motivated as an older athlete, combining running with travel, and proselytizing your spouse and children.
Unlike other running books, Karen includes instructions for running with your grandchildren.
Wild Times on Skidaway Island
a collection of her published nature stories from www.twatl.com
Skidaway Island, 8 miles long and 3 miles wide, is a high spot in Georgia's waving marshgrass. Sparsely inhabited for most of its 40,000 years, Skidaway Island is now home to 10,000 humans and countless deer, raccoons, squirrels, and water birds. Mama raccoon leading her babies across your back deck, a bobcat monitoring a bird feeder, or ever-present deer munching hanging flower baskets, give humans the feeling of residing in an open air zoo.