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July 21, 2009

Personal Fitness:
The myth of loosing strength with age

BY
JIM GREGORY

My birthday was a couple months ago, I'm now officially 22 years old, I definitely don't feel old and I know I am definitely not old, but 22 felt odd because I wasn't working up towards anything anymore. This got me thinking about aging and people who struggle with keeping fit in their age and the myths surrounding it. Aging does not mean you loose the ability to build and keep muscle mass. However, if you don't use it, you will loose it. To me this is just common sense, but for many in our busy lifestyles we loose sight of this overlooked fact. Gymbunnies here are some quick facts.

1) Americans loose about 6.6 lbs of lean body mass (Muscle) each decade of their life on average starting from young adulthood.

2) As we age the amount of anabolic hormones in our bloodstream decreases which decreases the amount of synthesis of proteins within our muscles.

3) Between the ages of 30 – 70 Americans experience on average a 20% decrease in motor units (connectors) between your muscles and your nerve cells which decrease your response time.

4) Between the ages of 20 – 70 the average American looses about 30% of the total muscle cells. This muscle loss will lead to:
- Slowdown in our metabolism
- A steady increase in fat
- Decline in aerobic capacity
- A reduced blood-sugar tolerance
- A continuing loss in bone density

So now that I have the Debbie-Downer stuff out of the way, I should say these are all statistics of "average" Americans. Now, I'm not sure about you, but I surely don't want to be average, in fact, I'd like to raise the bar if I could. Gymbunnies, the only way you can escape these horrible statistics is to stick-to-it and make it happen. Get a gym membership and go at it. If you have medical problems and are unsure about where to start, get a trainer! Remember, if you keep your health in top shape, you won't have to visit the doctor quiet as often which the cost of a trainer is significantly less than medical care these days.

Walter Frontera discovered in his studies that a group of 12 people from ages 60-72 that worked out for 12 consecutive weeks, for 3 days showed astounding muscle gain. Strength of his subjects doubled in targeted areas and in other areas strength tripled! Don't give up, stick-to-it and make it happen! No matter your age or situation, there is always a way to get the results you want.

 
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