Dr. Rajani Patil

Midlife Fitness Or Midlife Crisis?

August, 2018
The Master Responds

As one crosses the threshold age of 40, various things start to happen. The first one might be your friends making fun of you for being on the 'wrong side of 40' but more importantly, you might start to feel not as vitalized or energized as before. This happens not only because of the physical aspects of aging but also the fact that in your 40s you are juggling several different things leading to stress and exhaustion. If you haven't been particularly careful about keeping fit till now, you may feel that it is now a lost cause. Lots of people think that unless you have a history of exercise, it is too late to start or that it is not viable to be doing what those in their 20's and 30's might be doing easily.

But let me assure you, this is not so. Anecdotally I have seen many patients and friends who have taken up workout regimes late in life while up until now the only exercise they got was the non-existent walk from their car to office. In fact many people have completely turned their lives around after 40 and are reaping the benefits of it much later in life. I have watched and admired my father-in-law’s lifestyle for the past one decade. He follows a simple but consistent regime of food and exercise daily without any excuses or any 'missed days'. The only days that I have seen him not adhere to his routine is on the wedding days of his three children! At 70, he stands tall with radiant skin and capable of physical activity that any other 70 year old would flinch from. He is also devoid of any chronic illnesses his peers discuss about and the only medication he takes are daily vitamins. I had assumed that he was always like this. Much to my surprise, he was a smoker till he hit midlife. I am not sure what spurred the radical change but he took up exercise and a well-balanced diet regime then and has stuck to them ever since. This is truly inspiring.

 
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