Thursday, November 15, 2012

Age will not take me down

"Research suggests that between 40 and 50 years old, a person loses 8 percent or more of their muscle mass."

Uh oh ... it's all over.

I read the quote above on the Men's Health website recently and it really knocked me on my "tookus". Is this the beginning of the end now that I am 40 years old? I can almost feel my muscles slowly deflating as I type this. 

It feels so cliche to be deeply affected by turning 40, but I must admit, it has taken a bit of a toll on me. I have no complaints about my family, my job or my health, but I do feel like a window is slowly closing on me. And I can't really define why that closing window has had such an impact. 

Maybe taking that chance on some entrepreneurial venture is no longer a possibility.

Maybe it is the reality that some of the players on my favorite sports teams could actually be my children.

Or maybe it is the fact that my body has now started the inevitable decline. 

That last one seems to be the one that really hits home. I realize we are talking about minimal decline here, but it is the idea that age 40 is identified as the beginning of the end. It doesn't feel that way but I'll have to side with science here. 

I can't seem to shake this concept of muscle mass loss and I think I'm ready to defy it in a big way. I am a regular weight lifter and runner but not hardcore by any means. I do enough to stay in decent shape and to effectively "check it off the list". It is difficult to find the time to work out with a job, family and kids activities but I make do.

The final inspiration to take 40 and beat the hell out of it came from an unexpected source. He is an actor who is 50 years old and is on my TV each and every night. Can you guess who it is? Actually don't bother, unless you have children between the ages of 6 and 12. He is this guy (on the left):
Eric Allan Kramer on "Good Luck Charlie" (my kids favorite show). Seriously, check out the guns on this guy. This is how he has looked on the latest season of the show and it is damn impressive, considering this is how he looked not too long ago:

Not a lot of muscle loss there, eh?

I made the comment to my son that "Bob Duncan looks phenomenal". He then proceeded to look him up on Wikipedia and said to me (without any indication of busting on me) "He is FIFTY years old". 

That was it. Game f'n on. If he can do it, I can do it (of course I don't have access to the personal trainers and nutritionists that he does, but that is besides the point). 

I started to formulate my plan and tried to come up with an impressive end goal. But I couldn't figure out what that would be. Is it running a marathon? Is it competing in a bodybuilding contest (I kid)? Is it drastically improving my BMI (Body Mass Index for those of you so embarrassingly uninformed)? 

Nope. It is clearly none of those. In fact, I realized it is not about a goal at all. It is all about the process. I want to work hard, eat clean because I still can. I am young enough to still make an impact on this one body I've been granted and that is what I will focus on. 

I'm going to run.

I'm going to do sprints.

I'm going to do circuit training.

I'm going to do yoga.

I'm going to eat more protein.

I'm going to eat less sugar.

I'm going to drink more green tea.

I'm going to mix shit up like never before.

And it isn't about letting it take over my life. I will train smarter, not longer. I will make smart choices along the way and hopefully that will provide great results. But more than anything, I am going to thank my lucky stars that I can still do it all. 

So keep coming back for updates on my successes and failures and how I feel along the way. 

AND ...... I would never leave out my partner in crime, Matt, from this POA. In fact, he will be posting his take on the topic right after me. His take is a bit different and he has some fascinating history to share with you all. But when all is said and done, we are both striving for the same thing ... to defy age and knock it on its ass.

Hope you will all tag along for the ride.



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