Oh to be Greek and living on the island of Ikaria, where people live to be 100, laughing, dancing, and, um, still having sex. The New York Times reports today on a study of Ikarian men between 65 and 100, noting that "80 percent of them claimed to have sex regularly, and a quarter of that self-reported group said they were doing so with “good duration” and “achievement.”
The dude in the picture is Evangelos Koutis, age 99. To paraphrase When Harry Met Sally, "I'll have what he's having."More...
There are many ways to fight aging: intensely regimented calorie-restricted diets, anti-gravity yoga, shooting up with pregnant women's urine, or, according to the Washington Post, kicking other people in the ribs. The crowds at boxing, karate, and kickboxing gyms these days, the Post reports, are getting a little grayer, or in their somewhat less kindly description, more "brittle." Luckily for everyone involved, the story doesn't include tales of splintering bones. Instead, it's about overcoming middle-age. "What are we doing here? We're all trying to fend off the march of time," says one of the 40-something boxers. "That's what I'd like to achieve physically." Though apparently for a few, perhaps wiser salt-and-pepper boxers who realize that might not be possible, there are other goals too. Explaining why he's in the gym, sparring, one 50-something says:
"Overcoming pain is something we all have to do. The pain of loss. The pain of disappointment. Physical pain. Being able to take that in and absorb it and go on...This is what life is all about. Realizing what you're up against and how to get around it."
Call me crazy, but working out with something like that in mind sounds a little better than being a calorie-starved, high-on-urine, stem-cell-facelifted, clinging-to-an-impossible-goal, punching machine.
Just because you're in your eighties, doesn't mean you can't raft across the Atlantic on a boat made of plastic pipes. The photo at left is, Anthony Smith, in 1962, in the midst of a ballooning trip across East Africa. Still feeling the adventure itch, Smith, now 84, placed an ad in the Telegraph: "Fancy rafting across the Atlantic? Famous traveller requires 3 crew. Must be OAP. Serious adventurers only." FYI, Americans, OAP stands for Old Age Pensioner. The ad worked, and in in January, Smith and his Old Age Pensioner crew will push off from the Canary Islands and raft 2,800 miles across the Atlantic to a beach in the Bahamas. "Most people my age are happy with a trip to Sainsbury's every Tuesday, or maybe helping out fixing the church hall roof," Smith says. "What I want to show is that you don't have to be satisfied with a trip to the supermarket. You can do other things." Despite his lack of a sexy Spanish accent, I think Mr. Smith is angling for a spot in the "Most Interesting Man in the World" ads. (via Outside)
Bad news first: Waist size and mortality are linked. Meaning, even if you're in a normal weight range, if you're carrying fat around your waist, you're more likely to die. A lot more likely to die, in fact. In a new study conducted over nine years by the American Cancer Society, having a larger waist size doubled a person's risk of dying. What's "larger"? Anything over 47 inches for men and 42 inches for women puts you in the danger zone. Though it's not a free pass up to those numbers. For men, every four inches over 35.4 increases the risk of death by 25%. For women, every four inches over 29.5 does the same thing.
But now the good news:More...
"My slogan is, ‘Use it or lose it'...It keeps me young, fit, and I enjoy the people who come to my classes tremendously. We're more like a family. We like to make it fun and not work to exercise."
— Inspirational 88-year-old Kay Smith, who teaches six fitness classes a week in Helotes, Texas, and whose attitude and boldness with workout accessories (click through for a close-up) I really appreciate.
"When you do harmonize mind, body and soul out there running, it made me realize that no matter what problems I was burying, all those are man-made, and there's so much more out here in nature, and God's creation, that it made everything that I was anxious about or concerned about seem minimal. It's just a freeing experience, very uplifting."
— Sister Madonna Buder, an 80-year-old nun from Spokane, Washington, who has completed more than 300 triathlons and who will be competing in Ironman Canada next month.
I think we're all aware that it's summer. The sweltering heat invites goodies that cool our insides and refresh our parched mouths. But feeling overly full in this heat is not so cool, pun intended. I've been starting off most of my mornings lately with some kind of light, blended, cooling elixir, and I've been taking full advantage of the goods that are in peak season. Since my previous post for Watermelon Limeade got such a great response I decided to share one more watermelon favorite! I've been rocking this juicy fruit in several different types of elixirs and am happy to share the one I just polished off, which includes a special ingredient — a beautiful red superfruit — the schizandra berry.More...
Ernestine Shepherd, 73, holds the Guinness World Record for oldest female bodybuilder, runs marathons, and leads exercise classes for seniors in Baltimore, and she didn't start exercising till she was in her 50s. Watch the Good Morning America video if you want to fuel your dreams of buff retirement. And if you want a laugh along with your inspiration, keep an eye on the grandpa, second from the right — he really loves the camera. (Special thanks to sandella for sharing the video).
I'm still working on grounding and balancing my energy. To my barefoot walking, my rooting meditation, and my grounding sheets, I've added The Zapper. I first began to use this per my friend David Wolfe's recommendation when I was having some immunity imbalances. I was getting colds frequently, and he said my "viral load" was probably pretty high. Makes sense since I live in a bustling city. He also suggested I use the zapper on my low back which has pain off and on due to my earlier yoga days of absurd circus-style backbending. And it's worked wonders. I'm honestly just starting to understand the science behind it myself, but here's the gist...More...
People with the largest networks of friends live 22% longer than people with the smallest networks of friends, according to a new study conducted by the Centre for Ageing Studies at Flinders University. Friends are nice and all, but what do they actually do for your health? The researchers have a theory: Good friends discourage smoking and heavy drinking and other unhealthy behaviors. Here's what's really interesting though — networks of friends make a difference on longevity, but networks of relatives, including children, don't have an impact. My theory: You don't listen when your sister says you should cut your liter-a-day soda habit, put down the cigs, and go to the gym. She's just your sister. But when your friend says it, falls on different ears. Maybe? To reiterate, this theory not yet supported by science, currently just supported by me. But anyone else had this experience?