Never too late to get fit
FEEL THE GAME - Bobby Motus (The Freeman) - March 22, 2019 - 12:00am

Admittedly, there is a virus that always gets in our way whenever we get the urge to be active and that viral infection is called laziness. There is that feeling when we try to put on our exercise clothes and the couch looks so inviting with all the movies on Netflix and then we decide to jog towards the fridge for some snacks and postpone it for another day.

But we could still be active no matter how late we think our ages are.   I always get infected with the lazy bug that exercise comes intermittently at best. Recent research had shown that even starting exercising in middle age can add to one’s lifespan.

The study found that persons who were physically active their whole lives had a 36% lower chance of dying compared to people who only broke sweat when constipated. Surprising to note also on the study was that it had shown that people who had been inactive in their youth but decided to exercise in their 40s and 50s resulted in almost the same reduction of early death odds at 35%.

In an article by EJ Mundell of HealthDay news, researchers tracked the health and exercise patterns of almost 320,000 members of the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP). It suggests that midlife activity reduces the odds of death from heart disease (43%) and cancer (16%) compared to people who never exercised.  There is a correlation with exercise and a person’s longer life span.

Dr. Evelina Graver, director of the coronary unit of North Shore University Hospital at Manhasset, NY said, “Whether or not you start exercising when you are younger or older, the benefits will always be there.  This does not mean that starting exercising at a later age, and getting the same mortality benefit, means that one should not exercise in younger years.”

Researchers agreed that those who did physical activity the most in each age bracket had the most benefit and had the lowest risk of dying from any natural causes.   Fitness experts recommend at least 150 minutes a week of moderate-intensity exercise and to those of us who had breached the half century mark, brisk walking at least 30 minutes a day is a start, not join a half marathon and risk collapsing due to over exertion and lack of training.

Our body comprises 30% to 45% muscle.  A lean man’s body has 45% muscle, 15% bone, !5% fat and 25% body organs.  A lean woman has 30% muscle, 15% bones, 30% fat and 25% body organs.   Don’t panic ladies, unless you’re exceptionally muscled, your body structure is naturally gifted with fat.  We could never have those bulging biceps or ripped abs but being physically active, no matter the age will tone the more than 600 muscles we have in our bodies.

In so doing, we make happy our hearts, the hardest working muscle we have.  It is perpetually beating the moment we got out from our mothers’ womb.  From the cradle to the grave it continually pumps to supply blood to our body.

But working out only sets the tone for strong muscles.  Our body repairs and strengthen tissues during our deepest sleep cycle.  We need a good night’s sleep for maximum muscle healing and growth.  It is thru sleep that we get pumped up.

Lenox Hill Hospital, NYC sports cardiology director Dr. Sunny Intwala sums it all by saying, “Doing something is better than doing nothing, and doing more is better than doing something.”

bobbytoohotty@lycos.com

AMERICAN ASSOCIATION OF RETIRED PERSONS EXERCISE
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