We’re melting. Well not really melting, more like shrinking. No, shrinking isn’t the right term either. We have muscles, but they are slowly wilting.
Wilting is a better word. But the actual loss of muscle mass is a bit scary. Starting at age 40, 8 per cent of our muscle mass just disappears. If that wasn’t bad enough, the research indicates that we then continue to lose another 8 per cent each decade.
Stay with me now. That means you lose 16 per cent of muscle mass by age 60, 24 per cent by age 70, and 32 per cent by age 80. When I see these numbers, I start to imagine that we’re going to be just skin and bones in our 80s. Come to think of it, that’s what our parents did look like in their 80s.
Are we going to just take this lying down? Because we’re just too weak and lacking enough muscle to stand up? NO!
Okay, maybe. If we do nothing to change the course of this wilting muscle mass phenomenon, we will be limp noodles that can barely pick up a cup of java in the morning (a loss of unparalleled magnitude for many).
Or, and you know what’s coming, we pick up the free weights and start lifting. And the TV remote does not qualify as a free weight. We are talking about those little barbells that come in 4, 6, 8, 10, 12-pound varieties. You lift them up out to the side, over your head, and in any other approved motion. Some people even use water bottles if they don’t want to bother with the free weights. AARP has loads of info on strength training.
The objective is to keep the muscle mass you have, not to end up looking like Popeye. Not that the Popeye look would be so bad, it’s just over the top when you’re 80 years old.
Boomers are getting butt lifts, neck lifts, breast lifts, cheek lifts, hair plugs, and a raft of other procedures that are generally designed to tighten up their bodies. Spending all that money and time on these procedures without addressing diminished muscle mass means they could still end up being a bag of bones.
If you want to lift something for a better body, go out and get some free weights. Tell them Popeye sent you.
Jay Harrison is a writer and creative consultant for DesignConcept. You can also visit his author page here. His newest mystery novel, Rio Puerco Demise is available on Amazon. His first mystery novel, Head Above Water, is also available on Amazon.