After 25, let’s face it, things start going downhill a little. Not technically downhill, just status quo. What I mean is that up to the age of 25 or 26, our bodies are rapidly developing, changing, growing (our brain), repairing, and regenerating—We. Are. Invincible! Our first excuse is our 30th birthday…”as soon as I turned 30, my back started hurting,” and every decade after our excuse becomes more unarguable.
Once we begin to perceive pain, there’s a switch up. Some people are highly motivated to find the culprit, fix, and eliminate it, while others hold fast to the belief that it’ll just go away or that it’s a fundamental part of aging—a slow decline with increased pain (deal with it). At this point, we have simply discovered that we are in fact destructible; however…and here’s the kicker…we can prevent decline and move into a state of maintenance. It’s not about living to die, it’s about thriving while alive.
Maintenance requires constant touch ups. This may mean moving around some physiological furniture and dusting. Say you develop elbow pain. Are you leaning on the elbow at work all day, do you constantly prop this arm up, have you been subjecting this arm to repetitive stress (hammering, drawing, throwing, etc.)? It’s time for a switch up! Switch arms for the task, become more ambidextrous, switch your work posture. Pain = time to change.
For a runner, it may mean new shoes. Yes, 10 years ago you were fit for the perfect shoe for your foot type—well, that was 10 years ago! Ligaments stretch, muscles change…take another look at it. Maybe you need a different type of insert, a wedge, compression socks, or a totally different type of shoe. It may also mean that more strength training needs to be done. It is well documented that strength translates to endurance; however, endurance does not translate to strength.
For a musician it may mean adjusting the heights of microphones, stands, props, pedals, changing playing and practicing posture to sitting, standing, more support, improved ergonomics, etc.
Become an investigator, google some stuff, phone a friend. Pain is normal, but you may be able to ease or eliminate it to maintain your current lifestyle and leisure activities.
Food, Supplements, and Exposure also play a huge role in life maintenance. I could eat McDonald’s and Dairy Queen as a tween and young adult too, but now I am not invincible, my guts have become sluggish…I can’t do it anymore! Eat clean and drink water—yes, water…PLEASE stop the soda and juice (unless YOU juiced it or it contains nothing but fruit juice)—bad food (stuff not from the produce or meat isle), soda and sugary juices are a request for a chronic illness. MOST days of the week be good, have some fun on the weekends. Supplement with things like probiotics, magnesium, or something else pharmaceutical grade, use high quality essential oils, and parooze the fermented food section or google what the heck fermented food is. Cut dairy and gluten MOST of the time, and eat organic as much as possible.
A little investigation and house cleaning can eliminate or decrease pain and keep you keeping on.