My philosophy is this: the things you do inside the gym, or with purposeful intention of activity (running, cycling, etc), are meant to make your every day life easier.
As we age, if we’re not intentional about incorporating regular weight-bearing activity, we lose muscle. When we lose muscle, we lose strength. And when we lose strength, we lose functionality.
Have you ever seen an older person simply struggling to walk? Or struggling to get up out of a chair? Perhaps a relative or friend you know already exhibits this type of behavior. I’m not sure if the stat still holds true, but I remember taking a class in college discussing the benefits of strength training in an older population. It was stated that over 50% of people who live in an assisted living environment could become independent again with six months of solid weight-bearing activity. You see, it’s not that they can’t function doing the big things, it’s all the little things throughout the day that exhaust them: carrying groceries, cooking food, vacuuming, getting up and down off the couch. All the things most of us seem to take for granted become exponentially difficult when we don’t take care of our bodies.
Yes, I realize we’re all going to die, but to me the point of our existence is to LIVE, not just exist. What type of life will you have if you have to rely on any and every body to do all the things for you all the time?
I have a retired couple that I train both 66 years old. They’ve been working on their retirement home for the past couple of years. Recently they decided to lay some stones down around the property and buy “some” I mean several TONS. I think it’s safe to say that most people their age would probably just hire someone to come do the work and be done with it. However, they’ve chosen to do the work themselves and take pride in the fact they are physically capable of tackling this task themselves. When it comes down to it, that level of independence is invaluable, and this story is a shining example of what I believe fitness is all about. This couple can go out, they can do the things they want to do, feel GREAT, and not have to rely on other people to get the job done.
I’ve said it before, most of us are probably going to live a very long time. The question is, what quality of life what we have when we’re 100 years old? Will we make the choice to be the Jack Lalannes of the world, still cranking out push-ups and motivating others to stay active? Or will we allow ourselves to succumb to the aging process, withering away until our final days?
The choice is most certainly yours, and no matter what stage of life you’re in right now, you can start making positive changes today to make a difference for your tomorrow.
I’m The Fitness Ninja, and I’m Making America Fit Again!
In addition to coaching people to better fitness and nutrition, Marc enjoys writing and helping expand people's minds to live their best life.
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