Monday, May 14, 2007

Body Image

Back in my 20s, I was very conscious of being one of the youngest staff members at my place of employment. I didn’t feel bad or insecure about that, I just noticed my age made me different from everybody else in one obvious way. At “coffee,” our editorial group gathered to talk industry news or pop culture for 20 minutes or so most mornings. I thoroughly enjoyed my co-workers' personalities and insights and collective knowledge. But I couldn’t figure out why everyone was so obsessed with their bodies. Bunions, bad backs, migraines, fatigue, exhaustion, and on and on and on (“sheez,” I thought. “What’s wrong with these people?”)

What was wrong with these people was that they were in their 40s. It only took me 20 years to figure that out, and now that I have, I hear similar complaints coming from the mouths of my peers and my siblings (and sometimes myself) whenever we gather.

So it tickles me when I encounter people in their 60s and 70s providing me new information about health and fitness. Today my 70-plus friend was describing a “Pump & Run” 5K event that her 61-year-old brother won this weekend in Wisconsin. I've never heard the term before today, but this is an event in which participants bench press an amount of weight based on their own body weight, and then they run a 5K. My friend had no idea how much weight participants were pressing, just that her brother completed 79 repetitions. And that he came in first out of more than 100 racers.

Now that’s what I want to hear! I’m “running” my first 5K next month. But I hope in another 20 years or so, my generation will be leading the way in strong, healthy living.


Anonymous said...

Have you ever heard Ellis Paul's "The World Ain't Slowin' Down"? I bet you would like it.

Kathy said...

No, I don't know that one. . . .