“You have to age, but you don’t have to rot”

I heard about Younger Next Year for Women: Live Strong, Fit, and Sexy – Until You’re 80 and Beyond from my friend Martha. I downloaded it to my e-reader and started checking out its advice: Exercise, watch what you eat, don’t be a hermit, and so on. Not exactly new news.

Then I read: “Biologically, there is no such thing as retirement, or even aging. There is only growth or decay.” Hello! V8® moment. I never thought about it that way. I always saw being fit as a nice to have — to show off in a road race or a tailored suit. Now it was no longer optional.

Authors Crowley and Lodge were re-assuring, however: “You have to age but you don’t have to rot.” All right then. I can work with that!

Do serious aerobic exercise four days a week AND serious strength training two days a week… for the rest of my life? Wow. That sounded intimidating. In talent management we’d call that a “stretch goal.” But I’m trying. It’s hard some days, especially if I don’t squeeze in an early workout and the day goes in an unexpected direction.

Younger Next Year is refreshing. I’m a sucker for lines like “do some damn thing every day” and “you can dog it some of the time.” It’s worth a read whatever your age. Because decay is not a generation thing. It’s not a case of “Now you’re 50 (or 60 or 70), and you need to watch out…”

If you are an adult, and your body is not growing it is decaying. Choose growth!

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