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"I'm in the best shape of my life!"
Old 09-30-2004, 05:42 PM   #1
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"I'm in the best shape of my life!"

C'mon, John Galt. At age 25 we just THINK we're immortal.

It's true that at age 25 I had the POTENTIAL to be in much better shape than now (on the cusp of 44).

Lessee, in 1985 I was standing six-hour midwatches on top of 12-hour days, drinking 6-8 daily cups of Navy coffee, working in spaces so clogged with second-hand cigarette smoke that we were cleaning the air filters weekly, eating all the fatty fried food I could wrap my lips around, finishing it off with a cup or two (or three) of ice cream, only working out when I was ashore (maybe), and drinking as much Guiness (ashore!) as any self-respecting Scotsman. I eyed vegetables with suspicion and sunscreen was for wimps who couldn't handle tanning oil. Looking over my medical records from those halcyon carefree youthful days, I weighed 205 (I'm 5'10") with a 36" waist, 230 cholesterol (we didn't bother with that LDL/HDL stuff then) and a BP of 145/90. Oh, yeah, and I was absorbing 20-30 mrem/month of gamma radiation from a nuclear reactor with an unmeasured chaser of neutrons from ICBM warheads.

Luckily I don't have to worry about the workplace environment any more. Last night I logged my sixth month of tae kwon do training. Today I just finished a couple hours in the surf and I'm paddling stronger than ever, but I'm saving myself for a couple hours' surfing tomorrow before Friday-night sparring. I still drink an honorary daily cup of Kona but most of my hot beverage is green tea. I eat mostly fish & poultry, LOTS of green stuff, and a half-cup cone of ice cream 4-5 days a week (apparently I'm still human). A case of Corona beer lasts me over a month. I work out six or seven times a week and most of it is recreational, not mandated by the workplace. I'm down to 185 lbs with a 32" waist and all of my old uniforms are too small in the chest/shoulders. My cholesterol is below 200, my BP is below 120/70, and I'm pretty sure my house is in a radiation-free area.

As another example, the Navy has been running a physical-fitness test for at least 20 years now. With a few notable exceptions, my scores over the last two decades have been rising to the point where I was doing better than many of the young whippersnappers who should have been "in the best shape of their life".

Clearly I should have lived a healthier lifestyle & worked out to my full potential when I was 25 so that I could have even better health today. But back then I was immortal and couldn't even spell cognitive dissonance! However, I'm pretty sure that by the time I reach your rarified age strata that I'll look back on 44 as "the best shape of my life".
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Re: "I'm in the best shape of my life!"
Old 09-30-2004, 08:26 PM   #2
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Re: "I'm in the best shape of my life!"

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You guys need to get a grip. Old farts declaring "I'm in the best shape of my life" is ridiculous. Your best days are behind you. Deal with it.

John Galt
Hi John,

I know my age, I'm 56+ but I also know that when I have gone for 1 day bicycle rides of 100 miles on a heavy 30 year old PX10 bicycle, I would beat the pants off a number of bike jocks who were more than 25 years younger than me. I can tell you that it is not just my ego talking. Some of these guys would be amazed and would ask how I developed my strength and speed.

But of course, you are right in that I probably would have been in better shape 35 year earlier and a demon on wheels had I exercised with the same intensity as I am doing now.

By the way, my dad is over 93, still lives alone and until recently was pretty active for his age so I "hope" I have inherited his genic longevity and energy.

MJ 8)
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Re: "I'm in the best shape of my life!"
Old 10-01-2004, 04:35 AM   #3
 
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Re: "I'm in the best shape of my life!"

Hello MJ. Understand your point and that's nice about your
Dad. Living that long with independence is pretty
unusual. My folks are 87 and 85, both pretty
independent and both still drive. I could assume I will
have the same good fortune, but I do not. Although
I have never lost a close family member (other than
those who had lived a long time) the list of my friends and relatives who left us way before my age (60)
is quite lengthy. My maternal grandmother at 56, both paternal aunts at 42, fishing and hunting buddies
at 48, 56 and 56. A close business associate in his 40s
and now his wife just died too. Last week the guy who ran my favorite motorcycle shop at 48. I could go on and on. My point is
genetics help a lot, but life is still a big crap shoot
even if you are in great shape.


John Galt
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Re: "I'm in the best shape of my life!"
Old 10-01-2004, 09:41 AM   #4
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Re: "I'm in the best shape of my life!"

Hey John,

Again you are right. We can only hope for the best and try to live as long as we need or want.
As I mention, I commute 20miles daily to work by bicycle in the thick of city traffic averaging about 17 to 18 mph.
I am a very careful but practical rider so I take common sense chances and yes, I am in great shape (I'm not Lance)

BUT

a big fat 2 ton vehicle can easily alter my ER plans (RIP)

and I KNOW IT! :-/

I just hope and pray that wisdom and luck is on my side.

Cheers

MJ

Quote:
You guys need to get a grip. Old farts declaring "I'm in the best shape of my life" is ridiculous. Your best days are behind you. Deal with it.
PS: John, I know that I'm 56, great shape or not because all those beautiful hotties, that are 40 or younger, aren't looking my way.
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Re: "I'm in the best shape of my life!"
Old 10-01-2004, 09:23 PM   #5
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Re: "I'm in the best shape of my life!"

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I eyed vegetables with suspicion
You'd have liked my grandfather. He was fairly certain that sausage was a vegetable.

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Bicycling for fun & fitness...
Old 10-02-2004, 12:16 AM   #6
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Bicycling for fun & fitness...

MJ,

In my working days I used to pedal 25 miles round trip 3-4x/week. A couple years I put more miles on the bicycle than on the car. Luckily the uphill portions were all on the ride home.

As you dodge the inattentive drivers yakking on their cell phones, you may appreciate Travis Hugh Culley's "The Immortal Class: Bike Messengers and the Cult of Human Power". But I wouldn't recommend his approach...

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg...glance&s=books
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Re: "I'm in the best shape of my life!"
Old 10-02-2004, 08:19 AM   #7
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Re: "I'm in the best shape of my life!"

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As you dodge the inattentive drivers yakking on their cell phones, you may appreciate Travis Hugh Culley's "The Immortal Class: Bike Messengers and the Cult of Human Power". But I wouldn't recommend his approach...
Hi Nords,

Actually before I got a "real" professional career, I was a bicycle messenger in the early 70's and I made dynamite money making $1k net a month. I really loved it. Of course, I didn't have to worry about cell phone usage.
I don't know how I did it but I used to ride both in rain and snow. I don't do rain or snow anymore that's what a car is for.

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In my working days I used to pedal 25 miles round trip 3-4x/week. A couple years I put more miles on the bicycle than on the car.
I am in the same situation. Except for going to work during very cold winters, I rarely use my car. I even do most of my limited shopping by bike. I was tempted to return the plates, leave the car in the driveway until I am retired to save $1k on the insurance.

MJ
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Re: "I'm in the best shape of my life!"
Old 10-02-2004, 12:17 PM   #8
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Re: "I'm in the best shape of my life!"

My Grandfather knew that bacon was a vegetable and that bread soaked in bacon grease was desert. He ate little if any refined stuff, worked hard and died at 90.
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Re: "I'm in the best shape of my life!"
Old 10-02-2004, 05:30 PM   #9
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Re: "I'm in the best shape of my life!"

He probably instinctively avoided hydrogenated vegetable oils Bruce.
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Re: "I'm in the best shape of my life!"
Old 10-03-2004, 04:07 AM   #10
 
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Re: "I'm in the best shape of my life!"

Now here is the good news (I hope). My paternal
grandfather and great grandfather both made 100,
and as far as I know did/ate just about whatever they wanted. Maternal grandparents both died at 88.
On my Dad's side, he credits the men's longevity
to the liberal use of "Old Stumpknocker"
(read bourbon). Who knows? He may be right.

John Galt
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Re: "I'm in the best shape of my life!"
Old 10-04-2004, 09:38 AM   #11
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Re: "I'm in the best shape of my life!"

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he credits the men's longevity to the liberal use of "Old Stumpknocker"
(read bourbon). *Who knows? *He may be right.
Stumpknocker *

My dad used to call it "Stumpblower"... that's the first time I've heard anything close to that description from anyone but him. *Ah... memories
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