Fitness in Your (Forties), Fifties and (Sixties)

Fitness In Your (Forties), Fifties and (Sixties)

In the last letter, we discussed exercise and exercise modalities. Today we tackle aging and fitness; What levels of fitness are possible and what level of fitness can you get, with the time you have? Surprisingly, elite levels of fitness for your age may be achievable, in far less time on a per week basis than you think. For what is possible, an executive glance at some age group world records should give an indicator of where you stand, compared to record holders. Some interesting records:

Women’s 55-59 Track and Field (Athletics) USTAF records
100M   13.3
200M   27.16
Mile    5:27.57
High Jump 1.55M (5’1″ 1/32)


Swimming Long Course Freestyle
200M 2:16.28


127.6lb Olympic Weightlifting Class
Snatch 105.6lb.
Clean and Jerk 123.2lb.



Men’s 55-59  Track and Field (Athletics) USTAF records
100M  11.44
200M  22.36
Mile   4:35.04
High Jump 1.89M  (6’2″ 13/32)


Swimming Long Course Freestyle
200M 2:04.1

187lb. Olympic Weightlifting Class
Snatch 225.5 lb.
Clean and jerk 297 lb.


These are the numbers for events with very specific types on fitness required.  Do you need this type of fitness? Not, unless you desire to be a record holder! So what if you want all around elite fitness? Impact, helping lower body bone density in the track and field events, non-impact in swimming, and power and strength helping upper body bone density, in the lifts. Can you throw in some other sport and or exercise modalities to enhance your fitness? Yes you can and should, if only to prevent boredom, and maintain compliance to some form of challenging exercise or sport. If you are not already doing this, you may also want to add some team sports to what you do, always keeping individual sports and exercise as the foundation for your fitness, so you never have to depend on someone else for exercise.

Many of you may be more interested in appearance. Suffice to say, performance world record holders are not carrying around extra fat or even extra cosmetic faux fitness bodybuilding muscle, preferring performance giving athletic looks to the garish and even freaky looks of the plodding bodybuilder or the sickly dieter and the stick with fat and almost no muscle look.
The athlete above Phillipa Raschker is in the 65 to 70 age group clearing a high jump bar, healthy, fit and capable!

Training for speed-power-strength athletic events doesn’t require endless hours of conditioning. Most of the time is spent on technical qualities specific to the sport or event. Endurance/cardio athletes DO NEED TO SPEND MORE TIME in training, and most of these events are not technical in nature. I prefer to train people in the speed-power-strength area because they also get almost all the benefits endurance/cardio athletes get and much more. Additionally, most day to day activities in life are not usually long enduring sessions. Instead day to day life requires speed agility and quickness, just like performance athletes.

In conclusion: unless you must be an endurance athlete, your training time for conditioning purposes should rarely exceed four and a half hours a week, and depending on the technical aspects to your training, can be done in a little less than three hours per week. If you are bodybuilding, understand that your time commitment will be similar to that of the endurance/cardio athlete. In a simple way, the bodybuilder is replacing unloaded/minimal resistance with moderately heavy weights based on body parts. The speed-power-strength athlete can get the strength of the bodybuilder and the cardiovascular benefits of the endurance athlete in less than one fourth the time. Keep in mind, this elite general conditioning is no substitute for sport specific technical skills.

Look at the inspiring older athletes below, and feel the greatness waiting in you!

Event Alert
Today, October 7 2014, 4:30PM MDT, A live call in interview of Dr. Glenn Kotz. For those of you back East, Dr. Kotz went to Walt Whitman HS, in Montgomery County, Maryland. We will discuss the interface of fitness and health, fitness in your fifties and some cycling and running. Exclusively on KDNK, locally 88.1, 88.3, 88.5 on your FM dial. The studio number is 970-963-2976.

October 14, 5:30PM MDT Lecture at the The Aspen Clinic “Fitness In Your Fifties.”
970-279-5020 For more information.
1460 E. Valley Road
Suite 100
Basalt, CO  81621

November 2, 4:30PM MST, A live call in interview with Dr. Thomas Pevny of Aspen Orthopedics. We will discuss what we hope you don’t need, surgery! Exclusively on KDNK, locally 88.1, 88.3, 88.5 on your FM dial. The studio number is 970-963-2976.Edward Troy


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