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My Medicare Miracle

January 14, 2016 5 Comments

View from the exercise bike, JCC

View from the exercise bike, JCC

My life has changed dramatically in the last two weeks. I have been looking forward to Medicare because it saves me a significant chunk of cash each month. I shopped and researched wildly, reaching the conclusion that the new Iora Primary Care is right for me.  I am signed up with Humana on a Medicare Advantage plan that costs me nothing and offers benefits I can really use.  I went to my first appointment with Dr Julia Jernberg, my new primary care physician, on Monday.  She is the smartest, coolest doctor I have ever seen.  She gave me a simple practice I can do at home to relieve a chronic pain I have had in the front of my ankle.  She specialized in this orthopedic technique at University of Arizona School of Alternative Medicine. She nailed the diagnosis (always key to success), then taught me how to do my own simple hands on healing.  I find a position of comfort and gently coax my muscle out of trauma for about three minutes at a time, twice a day.  It is ridiculously easy to do, but she cautioned me not to be too zealous and overdo my remedy.  She nailed the zealous diagnosis too.  I have followed her instructions for three days and believe I can feel improvement.  Dr. Julie is truly my dream doctor, a teacher of self care.  She is assisted by the best staff in the most well designed environment.  I could not be more pleased with this fantastic upgrade to my health care.

My Silver Sneakers card arrived in the mail this week too. This card provides free membership privileges to Medicare recipients at health clubs all over the country.  In Tucson many clubs participate in the program, but each one offers a different set of privileges.  I am already a very happy member at Tucson Racquet Club, and have arranged to pay a fee over and above my Silver Sneakers membership (covered by my insurance company). I think it is worth paying $22 a month to be able to attend all the classes at my club.  However, I took my Sneakers card to the newly remodeled Jewish Community Center and was given full membership privileges.  The JCC does not restrict me to Silver Sneakers classes with my special membership.  They offer a wide array of fitness options.  This thrills me, but not as much as the fabulous Zuckerman Family Wellness Center does.  The gym is the feature I use the most at a club.  This one is spacious, modern, well staffed and super clean.  The view from the equipment room is spectacular, and like the Racquet Club, it is situated right on the Rillito River walk.  They have new state of the art equipment and professional trainers.  There is free high-speed WiFi which I used to read some magazines on my iPad while I peddled the new age exercise bike. The bike even has arm rests.

I am highly impressed with the quality of the operation, but my favorite part of the JCC gym is the special needs population.  Some special needs individuals work out independently and some come to the J with care givers who encourage and help them.  I watched a young man who appeared to have Down Syndrome have such a great time on the TRX equipment that he inspires me to try it.  He was so comfortable and happy swinging on the rings and attempting super difficult moves that I decided I can do that too.  I think it is really fun to share the gym with the special population, and it is the first time I have experienced that cool thing.  You just go, JCC!!!

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