Zionsville Times Sentinel

Commentary

September 7, 2011

Is 60 the New 40?

If you are about to skip this column thinking it doesn’t apply to you, keep reading. This information is just as important for you  ... maybe even more so.

But first, let me tell you a quick story.

Ten years ago, I began training a group of women who were all closing in on the half-century mark. As a 23-year-old, I totally underestimated what these women were about to accomplish. They dropped body fat and inches, developed beautiful, strong, feminine muscle, all while having fun. But the fun for them wasn’t in the work, it was in the results.

Now, 10 years later, these same ladies are nearing 60 and screaming a new motto: “60 is the new 40.” Actually, I have heard this several times recently from both men and women, all of whom have been caring for themselves. What is this trend and why is it happening? Is there a legitimate reason or are they delusional folks fighting a predetermined battle?

Bottom line: People who exercise can expect more from their bodies later in life. In fact, from a functional standpoint, this group hasn’t felt as though they have aged.

If you look at just a few ways exercise improves your body, you might get a clearer picture why they feel this way.

Resistance Training improves:

• The density of bones by causing them to absorb more calcium, counter-acting and staving off osteoporosis.

• The strength of connective tissue (ligaments and tendons) around joints, allowing for more integrity.

• The amount of skeletal muscle on your body for increased overall strength, a higher metabolism, and a lower risk of injury.

Aerobic Exercise improves:

• Your heart’s ability to pump blood to itself and the rest of the body.

• The strength and condition of the major arteries and vessels that deliver life-sustaining resources to the cells of your body.

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