As we go further in life most people’s muscles start to stiffen up.
They don’t need to. Old age is a lack of movement. It’s also a lack of the right mindset.
I’ve seen 80 year olds that can move better than people I know in their 20s.
Check out Sister Madonna Buder who started doing triathlons at age 52.
“If you think you’re old…you’re old. Never lose your child” – Sister Madonna
If you want to perform at a peak level for as long as possible you need to develop an openness to doing things differently.
If you keep doing the same things you’ve always done you’ll keep getting what you’ve always gotten.
You need focus, discipline and openness.
In Tom Brady’s book, The TB12 Method: How to Achieve a Lifetime of Sustained Peak Performance he talks about how most of his training routine is focused on softening and lengthening his muscles.
Most athletes and everyday people focus on strength and conditioning. That is important also but not as much, especially as we live longer and performance in sports is not as high a priority.
An easy way to think of it is that most people’s muscles are like beef jerky. Dry, tough and not very pliable.
You want them to be like filet mignon – soft, flexible and the ability to lengthen.
Think about when you were a kid and fell down or hurt yourself. Your body could bounce back like Gumby pretty
It’s not age that makes your muscles less pliable. It’s lack of movement, sitting, overtraining and NOT doing exercise targeted at softening and lengthening your muscles.
So how do you do it?
The great news about this is that the ways of doing it are simple, easy and they feel good.
Here’s two ways to start:
Foam roll. You can buy one from Amazon for $17 here.
Get a massage. Find a masseuse, ask your partner, ask a family member or a friend.
Fit them into your routine.
Foam roll every day for 5-15 min. (If you have any injuries or medical conditions consult with your doctor first as I am not a doctor nor do I play one on the internet)
You can find simple ways to use it all over your body online. Your quads, hamstrings, calves, back, shoulders, lats, arms etc.
With the massage try to get one monthly or quarterly to start if you haven’t been getting them regularly. If you can do get more in that’s great. Just make sure you stick to it for the long term – like the rest of your life.
You don’t need to be one of those people who become broken as they ‘get older’. Yes there are limitations to the human body but I’m sure you can agree we don’t tap into our potential nearly as much as we are capable.
You also don’t need to do triathlons like Sister Madonna in her 80s. But why not have the energy, vitality and movement capabilities to have a great life with your children and grandchildren?
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