What do you think about How Old is Too Old to Start Working Out??

Among the many common myths in the fitness world is the idea that working out - and weightlifting in particular - should only be done by younger folks or veteran trainees with decades of lifting under their belt.

In reality, nothing could be further from the truth.

It’s never too late to start

It might sound cliche, but you really are never too old to start working out. Regardless of your age, shape or fitness level, a structured workout routine has the potential to drastically improve your health, figure, mental wellbeing and overall quality of life.

Need proof?

Try Japanese runner Hiroo Tanaka. In July 2016, 85 year old Tanaka competed in the World Masters Athletics and ran the 100 metres in a blistering 15.19 seconds - a pace that the average person a quarter of his age would be hard-pressed to match.

Alternatively, if you’re looking for weight training motivation, look no further Sy Perlis. In 2013, the 91 year old - who didn’t start lifting weights until he was 60 - broke the bench press world record in his age division when he benched an astonishing 187.2 lbs.

Beyond these anecdotal examples, there’s a wealth of studies demonstrating the benefits of working out for people of all ages. For example, a Dutch study published in Age studied a group of 90 year old subjects who began a 12-week exercise program consisting of muscle power training, and balance and gait retraining. Compared with the control group, active subjects showed enhanced muscle power and strength, reduced incidence of falls, better balance performance and significant increases in total and high-density muscle.

If 90 year olds can reap major benefits in just 12 weeks of training, imagine what you could achieve with a multi-decade head start!

The benefits of working out as you age

Consistent exercise might be the closest thing we have to a fountain of youth. Many of the symptoms we associate with old age such as frailty, loss of mobility and balance issues are actually the result of prolonged inactivity and are not innately linked to age, according to Alicia Arbaje, assistant professor of Geriatrics and Gerontology at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

Importantly, the benefits aren’t only physical. Regular exercise has the potential to boost mental performance in older adults, just as it does in younger populations. Authors of a review published in Clinical Interventions in Aging concluded “Exercise programs that are structured, individualized, higher intensity, longer duration, and multicomponent show promise for preserving cognitive performance in older adults.”

Other benefits might include:

  • More energy
  • Retention of bone density
  • Improved muscle strength
  • Weight loss
  • Reduced risk of cardiovascular disease
  • Reduced risk of falls and injury
  • Increased cognitive performance

In conclusion, let us reiterate: it’s never too late to start. No matter your age, you can and will experience fantastic benefits from working out.

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19 December 2018
Never too old! What a great article and thanks for sharing!


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18 December 2018
This is a really good read. Thanks for posting on www.expatchoice.asia We absolutely love it when professionals share their knowledge with the expat community here at Expat Choice. We are an open source platform and we allow all professionals who have registered on our site to submit articles for publishing. This article is wonderful and thank you for the sharing and caring attitude.


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