“We Don’t Check for that Any More,” and Other Lessons I Learned at the Airport

We recently flew to northern California to visit my sister and brother-in-law.  Like many baby boomers, as many of you know, I had my hip replaced last year.  As I result, I now have a permanent piece of metal in my body.  This has allowed me to move again, to improve my fitness level, and to stay healthy.

I thought this baby would set off the alarm at the airport!

But I was concerned my new hip joint (titanium and other metals) would set off the alarms at the airport.

Here’s what I learned about hip replacements, along with two other lessons from our airport experience:

1)  Just What Are They Screening For?

I went through the X-ray machines at both Ontario and Sacramento airports.  At neither location did my hip set off the alarms.  In fact, I looked at my full-body “X-ray” and didn’t even see the hip replacement.  When I asked why that was the case, the TSA employee informed me, “We don’t check for that.”  Hmmm, not sure what they’re looking for (plastic explosives, deadly powders?).  Ironically, my husband’s brass belt buckle set off the alarm and he had to remove said belt in order to proceed on.


2)  Get Your Cardio On

I always seem to be rushing in preparation for a trip.  That means my exercise program might slip to the wayside in the days leading to our vacation.  Fortunately, you have to get to the airport so dang early, you have lots of time for cardio once you clear Security…and put your comfy shoes back on.  It’s easy to get 15 – 30 minutes of walking up and down the airport waiting area before your plane lands.  Just make sure you take ID and don’t step outside the legal area.  (I did that once in Seattle, without my  phone, and spent some time sweet-talking the TSA worker before she called my husband to rescue me.)

3)  There Are Lots of Food Choices, Some Better Than Others

We had to eat dinner at the Ontario Airport.  Fortunately, I did find several food choices I felt good about at Wahoo’s Fish Tacos.  My dinner salad was even vegetarian!  However, on our trip home, I fell victim to a sweet craving and succumbed to a frappuccino at the ever-present Starbucks.  (Fortunately, I did have time to walk off some of that sugar and calories before we had to board!)

Airports are a necessary evil; we have to abide by their rules to get to our destination in a more timely manner compared to driving, but they can be a royal pain in the derrière.  But with a little planning and perseverance, it is possible to thrive (at least physically) and survive the trip in good form.

For more ideas about staying healthy on vacations, give me a call!

We can discuss some practical tips and discover if any of my programs or classes are a good fit for you.
If you’d like to schedule that call with me, just CLICK THIS LINK, and let me know in the message that you would like a 1-on-1 call with me right away and I will be in touch to schedule that—oh, and leave me your phone number in there too since email is not as reliable as it used to be! Thanks.

Lisa Teresi Harris is a Registered Dietitian, Certified Personal Trainer, and author of the book Building Your Enduring Fitness.  A certified Geri-Fit Instructor, she helps Boomers and seniors to regain and keep muscle strength, mobility, and energy.
Contact Lisa to inquire about a customized, in-home fitness program for you or a loved one.

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