Generation X & Xercise

Typically Generation X are those who were born between 1965 and 1979.  That would make the oldest GenXer’s 45 years old now and the youngest ones 31.

Its hard to believe that some of my fellow GenXer’s are even grandparents!  Shocking!  I guess I find that one hard to grasp because I am still in the middle of changing diapers on my own 2 year old while humming Alice in Chains or Metallica tunes.  But as hard as it is to admit, Gen X is getting older. 

This “sad but true fact” (cool Metallica song), brings to mind how its so important for Gen Xer’s to continue being physcially active or start now. Physical activity is one of the best ways you can help your body and mind stay healthy. 

Did you know as a rule, muscle mass declines with age, starting in the 40s and picking up speed after about age 50? Then the typical rate of muscle loss really begins to outpace the rate of muscle gain, so that there’s an increasing net deficit, says Robert Wolfe, a professor of geriatrics and director of the Center for Translational Research in Aging and Longevity at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences. How dangerous that is depends how much muscle you start out with. The kind of decline that makes a lifelong runner go from a very fast 10k time to a slightly slower one in his 60s is not a big concern (except for the frustrated runner). The kind of decline in muscle mass that weakens an already frail elderly person so much that he or she is more prone to falls and can’t lift a small bag of groceries onto the counter is something to worry about.

The tool that everyone agrees works to shore up muscles: exercise, at every age. Ideally, that would include both a basic, progressive strength-training program as well as an aerobic fitness routine (like a brisk 30-minute walk every day). “Healthy muscle is not only about being stronger and bigger,” says Miriam Nelson, director of the John Hancock Center for Physical Activity and Nutrition at Tufts University.

Even my younger Gen X  or older Gen Y friends need ot be concerned with exercise and proper nutrition.  The younger you are when you start taking care of your body with proper nutrition and physical activity, the better your chances are for not losing so much muscle by the time you reach 40.

Insufficient protein intake as well as an unbalanced diet can also lead to a rapid loss of muscle at any age.  So again, it very important for our generation (and those before and behind us) to star looking at what we’re eating and make some positive changes.

Its not too late. Even if you spent most of your life sitting on the couch playing Sega and then XBox 360, you can start making positive changes now and reverse some of the “damage” done.

So why not start now improving your chances on not having to take high blood pressure meds, insulin, heart meds, more pain relievers, erectile dysfuntion meds, cholesterol meds and all the others you see advertised on TV that are not just aimed at the Baby Boomers, but the older Gen Xer’s? All you have to do is make the decision tocommit to be fit. 

You don’t need to have the goal of entering a fitness pagent or bodybuilding show.  You don’t need to enter a marathon or even a 5K for that matter.  All you have to do is exercise and eat right to keep you healthy and moving and grooving without the need of prescription help.

So let’s make Gen X the generation who took back its health, and let’s show those Baby Boomers that they’re not the only ones who are aging differntly than their parents.  Let’s set a good example for Gen Y and the other generations, that you don’t need to take a bunch of medications to age gracefully, all you need is some good heart pumping exercise and a good diet.

Listen, I know its very hard to make a change.  You don’t have to do it all cold-turkey or hit the gorund running.  You can take baby steps and gradually make better choices day by day.  And if you need help, you have this lover of all things grunge and metal to help you along the way.

If you need or want help, send me an email to fitwithjessica@live.com.

Have a great day:-)

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