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You + Exercise = “fountain of youth”

November 10, 2011

Can exercise really be a proverbial fountain of youth? According to the ever popular New York Times Physical Ed article this week (go ahead, leave me and read it, I’ll wait)…

“There was, as scientists noted, a drop-off in leg muscle strength around age 60 in both men and women. They [the athletes in the study] weren’t as strong as the 50-year-olds, but the differential was not huge, and little additional decline followed. The 70- and 80-year-old athletes were about as strong as those in their 60s.

“We think these are very encouraging results,” said Dr. Vonda Wright, an orthopedic surgeon and founder of the Performance and Research Initiative for Masters Athletes at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, who oversaw the study. “They suggest strongly that people don’t have to lose muscle mass and function as they grow older. The changes that we’ve assumed were due to aging and therefore were unstoppable seem actually to be caused by inactivity. And that can be changed.” (<-I added the bold type here to highlight my point)

So, while your PRESENT self avoids your next workout, don’t do it for yourself – do it for your 80 year old self!  Make sure that your octogenarian-self will still be applauding your youthful and middle aged self, saying a thank you for taking good care of YOU. After all, you just might have discovered and kept the secret to youth eternal “youth!”

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