It’s common knowledge that as we age our bodies change. Our health and fitness decline, some faster then others. We accept that we’re going to be “worse” at age 50 then we were at 40, worse at 40 then we were at 30, and worse at 30 then we were at 20.
Most of us would put our “prime” somewhere between 18 and 30. The average life span of an American man is 79 years. That means at best, 15% of our life is spent in our “prime.” 23% is spent “maturing,” or on the way up, and 62% is spent on the way down. 62%, well over half of our lives, is simply spent getting worse.
I can’t help but wonder how much of this is biology and how much is culture. Is the age and health paradigm faulty?
I’m 34 years old, which is old as dirt to some, and a spring chicken to others. To me, it’s the oldest I’ve ever been, and the youngest I’ll ever be. I’ve been CrossFitting for almost a decade. I’ve gone through different phases of dedication to my training, ups and downs if you will, but overall have been very steady.
At 34 years old I still regularly PR, or improve in my fitness. I can say with concrete proof that I am healthier in nearly every way (except maybe mental health, but that has more to do with my kids:)) than I have been my entire life.
At My Town, I regularly watch men and women in their 40s, 50s, and 60s do things physically they couldn’t do when they were younger. While all would agree age brings with it some challenges, they all also are realizing their “prime” maybe wasn’t as prime as they thought or as far off as it once seemed.
I don’t know about you, but at one time I dreaded getting older. I find myself now excited about the possibilities. I kind of can’t wait to see what I’m capable of when I’m 40, 50, 60, and hell 70+.
I’ll leave you with this quote from Socrates:
“No man has the right to be an amateur in the matter of physical training. It is a shame for a man to grow old without seeing the beauty and strength of which his body is capable.”