78-year-old Paul McCartney’s fitness routine: yoga headstands and diet

At 78, Beatles co-founder Paul McCartney is still working, writing new music and, until the Covid-19 pandemic hit, performing in concerts. In 2019, McCartney grossed just over $100 million on solo shows, according to Forbes.

One strategy that helps the septuagenarian stay active as he ages? A fitness routine. McCartney described his approach to wellness on a recent episode of the podcast “Smartless,” hosted by Jason Bateman, Sean Hayes and Will Arnett.

“I have a very definite routine,” McCartney explained on the podcast. But he doesn’t have a personal trainer, “it’s just me,” he said.

First, “I get on the mat, and I do a bunch of stuff there,” McCartney said. For example, he said he stretches his legs and uses a foam roller.

“Then, I move over to a cross-trainer,” also known as an elliptical machine, McCartney said. Sometimes he will “do a bit of running” for added cardio.

In total, McCartney said he spends about five or ten minutes on each segment of his workout. “It’s not a huge workout, but it’s good. I like it,” he said.

McCartney’s “favorite bit” of his workout is a headstand that he does to finish his circuit. The musician regularly practices yoga with a group of friends, including actor Alec Baldwin, that he calls “The Yoga Boys,” he said. (A representative for Baldwin did respond to CNBC Make It’s request for comment.)

“If I’m in a gym and all the big guys have got big weights and they’re doing all the big stuff, at the end I do a headstand,” he said. “And they come over to me [and say], ‘That’s pretty impressive man.'”

Yoga and meditation have been part of McCartney’s routine since his Beatles days. In the ’60s, The Beatles famously helped popularize Transcendental Meditation, a form of meditation that involves sitting for 20 minutes twice a day and repeating a mantra.

As the story goes, George Harrison’s wife, Patti Harrison, suggested that the band meet with Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, an Indian spiritual guru who was known for introducing Transcendental Meditation to the West. McCartney has referred to meditation as “a lifelong gift.”

“Whenever I have a chance in a busy schedule, I’ll do it, if I’m not rushing out the door with some crazy stuff to do,” he wrote in a 2015 blog post.

Today, Transcendental Meditation is a proprietary practice taught by certified teachers. Hedge fund billionaire Ray Dalio took up Transcendental Meditation after hearing about the benefits from The Beatles. And fellow billionaire Oprah Winfrey is also a fan of the practice.

McCartney said on the podcast that his vegetarian diet is another way he stays in shape.

McCartney has been a vegetarian since the late ’70s, long before plant-based diets were trendy. “You can get loads of vegetarian options these days, so it’s not like it was like in the old days when you just got the boiled sprout,” he said in an interview with Wired published in September 2018. 

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Lynnwood dentist says stress of COVID is grinding on patients, but routine care remains vital

Stress from the coronavirus pandemic has people gnashing their teeth and avoiding dental care.

LYNNWOOD, Wash. — The dentist’s office was a scary place for many people long before the coronavirus pandemic. For some, it’s even scarier now. 

People are avoiding dentists because they worry it isn’t safe — and that’s creating another set of health issues. 

The ongoing global pandemic is quite literally grinding people down to their breaking point.

“This patient said she started to notice herself clenching and grinding,” said Dr. Bradley Jonnes of Lynnwood’s Cedar View Dental, pointing to an X-ray. “She actually broke the tooth off at the gum line.”

Jonnes said, prior to the pandemic, he’d see a broken tooth every couple of weeks. Now he sees several a week.

“People come in and I ask them what changed, and they say, ‘Look at the world! It’s stress. I’m definitely clenching and grinding now.'”

Fear of contracting COVID-19 also has people putting off check-ups, turning small problems into big ones. Routine cavities can become root canals.

After dental offices across the country were completely shut down at the beginning of the pandemic, the American Dental Association changed its policy, designating check-ups as “essential” services.

When asked whether a check-up truly is “essential,” Jonnes responded, “That’s an interesting question. Sometimes we do a check-up and we find a lot more, so we can prevent a lot more. In some cases, it saves people time and money and pain and hassle by doing that check-up. We screen for oral cancer and other issues. We never know what we’re going to find until we get in there.”

Washington state is now allowing dentists to operate as they did prior to the pandemic with additional requirements, including screening of patients for symptoms and thorough cleaning of facilities.

Though not required, Jonnes uses a hand-held fogger to coat his office with a natural disinfectant every day.

He wears both an N95 and additional surgical mask during each procedure. A hospital grade air purification system filters the air in the office every 15 minutes.

“The good thing is, we now have a track record,” said Jonnes. “When we were first opening, we didn’t know how COVID and dentistry would be affected. Talking with my colleagues, the American Dental Association and the national association, we can see dental offices have been safe.”

The American Dental Association reports less than 1% of the nation’s 200,000 dentists have tested positive for coronavirus, compared to more than 200,000 health care workers who have been infected.

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