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Ever the optimist, LMQC Boomer Blogger Alan Sivell explains why it’s worth the extra effort to find the motivation to exercise past the age of 40.

By Alan Sivell

Have you ever wondered: Is all this exercise worth it?

LMQC blogger, Alan Sivell, wonders if it’s worth all the extra effort to work out past the age of 40

Even those of us who like to exercise have those days when we question why we do it, day after day. Especially so when, in our 40s, with work, kids and a home to take care of, carving out a regular workout routine seems both a luxury and a chore.

Exercising is harder when the weather turns sour

Those thoughts are amplified as we leave the relatively certain weather of summer and head into fall and winter.

When trying to get out of bed a bit earlier than needed for that compulsory (in our heads) workout, unpleasant weather – freezing rain, plunging temperatures – can be the deciding factor.

Let me just say, from my experience this past month, it’s all worth it. Get up. Get out there. Take an occasional day of rest as recommended, but keep carving out time for your exercise.

Is all this exercise worth the effort? Yes!

Because one day, you are going to be 70 (and those workouts will help get you to 70). And when you are 70 and the inevitable health issues happen to pop up, you’ll be able to weather them much more easily.

My first realization that my roughly 55 years of almost daily workouts was worth it happened when I went in for an angiogram recently.

I had an aneurysm in my left leg that needed several tests and then surgery.

The nurses, noting my age, were being very careful with the way they moved me in to position for the tests.

When the surgeon, who had seen me in his office the week before and noted my history of regular physical activity, came into the room, he was appalled.

“C’mon,” he demanded. “Move him. He’s not our typical patient!”

Later another nurse was moving me onto a different bed and I made an effort to help and she told me I didn’t need to, that I was much lighter than most of their patients.

It’s not the “fountain of youth” but it may be close

A study done by researchers at Ball state a few years ago explains what I was experiencing.

According to the New York Times, the researchers found that daily, recreational exercisers who had worked out for years had muscles which were largely indistinguishable from 25 year olds. And that the test subjects’ aerobic capacities were biologically about 30 years younger than their ages.

Playing team sports, I was merely a body to add to the team numbers. I didn’t have the athleticism to play a more prominent role on the team.

But fitness is about so much more that being the star of a team. It is something you can control.

It’s ultimately up to you

And at an early age, I decided I was going to control it as much as I could. It has meant working out on many days when I’d rather have stayed in bed.

So this fall, when the weather gets cold and you want to sleep in, think of your future you. All that exercise today is good for you now. And it is good for you later.

When you get to your 70s, you want to be in shape for them.

By Alan Sivell

Have you ever wondered: Is all this exercise worth it?

LMQC blogger, Alan Sivell, wonders if it’s worth all the extra effort to work out past the age of 40

Even those of us who like to exercise have those days when we question why we do it, day after day. Especially so when, in our 40s, with work, kids and a home to take care of, carving out a regular workout routine seems both a luxury and a chore.

Exercising is harder when the weather turns sour

Those thoughts are amplified as we leave the relatively certain weather of summer and head into fall and winter.

When trying to get out of bed a bit earlier than needed for that compulsory (in our heads) workout, unpleasant weather – freezing rain, plunging temperatures – can be the deciding factor.

Let me just say, from my experience this past month, it’s all worth it. Get up. Get out there. Take an occasional day of rest as recommended, but keep carving out time for your exercise.

Is all this exercise worth the effort? Yes!

Because one day, you are going to be 70 (and those workouts will help get you to 70). And when you are 70 and the inevitable health issues happen to pop up, you’ll be able to weather them much more easily.

My first realization that my roughly 55 years of almost daily workouts was worth it happened when I went in for an angiogram recently.

I had an aneurysm in my left leg that needed several tests and then surgery.

The nurses, noting my age, were being very careful with the way they moved me in to position for the tests.

When the surgeon, who had seen me in his office the week before and noted my history of regular physical activity, came into the room, he was appalled.

“C’mon,” he demanded. “Move him. He’s not our typical patient!”

Later another nurse was moving me onto a different bed and I made an effort to help and she told me I didn’t need to, that I was much lighter than most of their patients.

It’s not the “fountain of youth” but it may be close

A study done by researchers at Ball state a few years ago explains what I was experiencing.

According to the New York Times, the researchers found that daily, recreational exercisers who had worked out for years had muscles which were largely indistinguishable from 25 year olds. And that the test subjects’ aerobic capacities were biologically about 30 years younger than their ages.

Playing team sports, I was merely a body to add to the team numbers. I didn’t have the athleticism to play a more prominent role on the team.

But fitness is about so much more that being the star of a team. It is something you can control.

It’s ultimately up to you

And at an early age, I decided I was going to control it as much as I could. It has meant working out on many days when I’d rather have stayed in bed.

So this fall, when the weather gets cold and you want to sleep in, think of your future you. All that exercise today is good for you now. And it is good for you later.

When you get to your 70s, you want to be in shape for them.

Alan Sivell

Alan Sivell

St. Ambrose Professor, Pizza-lover, Bulge Battler

Alan is a communications professor at St. Ambrose University and a former reporter for WQAD-TV who has exercised – and dieted – his entire life.