I don’t know what it is about the age of 50 that often brings injuries, tough times or dire consequences in regards to the health of a man. It’s probably a combination of things including but not limited to:
a) An unhealthy lifestyle coming back to haunt a man in the form of sickness or death
b) Getting older
c) Trying to live a life of a man 10 or 20 years younger
d) Previous stress that has built up over the years
In some cases, it’s simply bad luck or fortune not smiling on an individual.
I started thinking about this in 2009 when Michael Jackson died at the age of 50 although his problems were plentiful. Within the last month, I’ve heard of several men suffering and/or dying. I know one, met another and the last man I heard of through a family member. Two died rather suddenly while the third man recovered after some very scary moments. All were 50.
As we creep over 40 and sneak up on 50, some of us do push ourselves as if we were back in our collegiate days. Recently, a good friend (age 46) came back from a skiing trip and I inquired about his health as I figured that he might have thrown “caution to the wind”. He admitted that he pushed himself too much and had to go the doctor upon his return. He has had leg problems so he should have been more careful and was fortunate to avoid a serious injury.
I wrote about this subject in a 2009 article called “45 is the new 35 (not 25)”. The link and a quote are below:
A message to all 40 something’s or older – stay within your abilities or comfort zone when competing athletically and don’t try to act as if you are twenty again. I have seen numerous people injured (often with pain for years) simply because they trained or competed as if they were still in college. A woman in my hometown was playing softball and ran the bases as if she was a track star; she never made it to home base and died. If she had run easily and comfortably, she might be on this earth today. Quality of life should be important and as we get older there needs to be a focus of sound judgment in any chosen athletic endeavor or you could have an aching knee or bad back for the rest of your life.
Take it easy men (and women) around middle age. That doesn’t mean that you can’t live life to the fullest - it means that one’s health and the elements (proper nutrition, exercise, “Me Time”, giving, loyalty, etc) that go into keeping one’s body, mind and spirit in top form should be a priority.
As I have said and wrote on more than one occasion, “There is nothing more important than our health”.
Men, we sometimes forget those aforementioned words in our competitive and fast-paced world so consider this a gentle reminder.
Happy Gswede Sunday!