Can a ninety-five year old man really break a record in a 200 meter run? You bet he can!
Two years ago, I wrote about an amazing, vital and active 93 year old man who gave a TED Talk in Zurich about seniors getting back in shape. Here’s the link to that fascinating post in April 2013.
Well, apparently Dr. Charles Eugster is at it again. Not only is he still active, he recently broke a 200 meter running record at age 95. Wow! All you have to do is look at the video (it’s YouTube, deal with the ad) and see what kind of physical condition is possible at that age.
This will not be a long post because the video speaks for itself as to the possibilities that come with age. The point is that it shows that, together with his TED talk and his many other athletic feats, he is showing the world that aging doesn’t have to be the dire experience that many of us seem to think it must be.
And Charles Eugster isn’t alone. There is the 87 year old lady gymnast. There is Cloris Leachman on the TV show, Dancing With the Stars at age 82. Gary Player, the golfer is doing videos on exercise at age 78. There are so many other examples that are too numerous to mention here. Even my old Washington-Lee High School Class President (Class of ’57), now age 75, has run in, and finished, every Marine Corps Marathon since its inception.
Most of us don’t want to run a 200 meter race, nor do we plan to run a Marine Corps Marathon. Most seniors don’t even want to participate in an exercise program, even though we know we must if we want to age gracefully. We want to not only age gracefully, but also feel good, and live a long, healthy life without fear of long, lingering illness.
Here are some things I’ve uncovered in researching and talking to seniors while looking for good, reliable information for this blog, information that I hope is of interest to you who read it:
- Seniors are waking up to health and fitness, particularly relative to longevity and to avoiding chronic illness.
- Seniors have a growing influence in medicine and health.
- Seniors don’t want an exercise program, they want to be happy and feel good. They realize that exercise and nutrition play a major role in being happy and feeling good, so they are exercising more and eating better.
- There is very little fitness information available, specifically for these seniors. Seniors are underserved in this area.
- Seniors are more independent and active than ever.
- As we get older, it becomes more important for each of us to take care of ourselves and become responsible for our own health, fitness and personal energy.
- The body gets healthier and we get happier.
So while we may not all want to be a Charles Eugster, Dance with the Stars (well, maybe), or run the Marine Corps Marathon, we are awakening to our responsibilities regarding our own health, fitness and personal energy.
And that’s a good thing! Thanks for reading.