I am referencing an important book in this second article in our series on aging: Younger Next Year, by Chris Crowley and Henry S. Lodge, M.D. There is also a companion edition, Younger Next Year for Women.
This book is required reading for my personal training clients. Almost without exception, they have come back to me and told me that the book is life-changing for them. If you are older than 50, or if you are working with people older than 50, I want you to read this book.
The book is especially important to the subject of teaching indoor cycling to older adults because it gives practical meaning to a new scientific understanding of aging at the cellular level.
According to the authors, about 70% of aging is a matter of choice, not inevitable decline. The tide, they say, of aging is inevitable but it is not so strong that it can’t be slowed—maybe even reversed a bit—by a few simple behaviors.
Remember that our bodies are an old design. Older than you may even think. Our bodies come from combinations of bacteria formed billions of years ago. The cells that result speak their own language—the language of primitive chemical and electrical impulses.
These cells run our bodies and we now have the knowledge to influence them. We now know how to “talk” to our cells in the only language they can understand.
The language that our bodies understand is the language of “survival of the fittest,” the language of “hunter-gatherer,” the physical language of work.
But don’t despair. This doesn’t mean that we all have to go back to hunting our dinner.
Reading the book. Amazing book. Has changed my outlook and I am sharing with everyone I know. I now think about my cells and my circulation when I ride and teach. Thank you!
I am happy you are enjoying the book. It was a game changer for me too. Your students will appreciate the insight.
Hi Bill, thanks for the great article, I just shared it with my clients and I thought I should share with you one of their comments after reading it:)”Thanks for this information, and for the article. I have to take issue with #4, though. Not the don’t eat crap part, but food is more than fuel for many of us in a positive way. It’s a way to appreciate our senses (taste, touch, sight, smell), and to engage with others socially and bring people and families together. A more conscious relationship to food as more than mere fuel can bring a lot of pleasure in life. Just my two cents. :)” I have to say I agree with her but understand the message:)
Hi Tracey. I love your reply. You raise a good point. The specific language referred to is mine and not the authors. And on rereading it, I see your members point. It’s all about balance, isn’t it? Not perfection. Bravo on a good point in the didcussion.
I adore my older riders and will now be guided by these wonderful rules. I bought the book, too, as I am over 50 and willing to learn as much as I can to age gracefully. Great article, Bill. Thank you.
Thank you Colleen. I am certain that your older riders love you too!
This was just great! I am a 64 year young Johnny-G trained cycling instructor at Westchester and Culver-Palms YMCA in LA, teaching (or subbing) an average of five classes per week. Working at the Y is great because the instructor is not just teaching to the “choir” of hardbodies, we see all ages from 12 to 80 or more and all fitness levels. Very family oriented. Thanks for the tips; I guess we’ll be cycling at 90!!!
Love the idea of still riding at 90! Yes, YMCA is a great atmosphere for all. Good wishes.