Monday, February 24, 2014

Aging in Any Place

Location, location, location.

One should spend one's entire life -- preparing for the next stage of it.  It's not a surprise that people become weaker -- so they have to do what makes them stronger, and more able -- and not handicap themselves thinking that whatever doesn't kill  them, will make them stronger.

That kind of conditioning obviously doesn't work -- and becomes apparent with time, no matter how strong their denial is.  Many of that ilk, will actually choose to live in houses with as many steps as possible, thinking that it will force them to climb stairs and thus keep them in excellent shape -- rather than the reality that it will just makes their lives painfully difficult/impossible.

So as they're living their lives, they're making these intelligent choices all along -- and not thinking that they'll wait until they're 65 or 70 -- when they're forced to.  They have to be preparing for every contingency -- including the worst, and not just hoping the best will materialize -- because they have no alternative plan.

That's not how the strong survive.  They're always positioning themselves for a competitive advantage -- choosing to live on flat ground -- rather than on the isolated, inaccessible heights, not inhabiting housing in which they have to go up/down stairs every time they want to use the bathroom, not having to maintain their vast acreage, fleet of cars, yachts, possessions.  

It is very difficult for those who have never begun their lives all over again -- if they've never done so before, and starting at 65 -- to do the right thing(s).  They have to be practicing all their lives -- to get better, and not simply continue to get worse -- which is how some people live and will end their lives.
Aging in place is not always the best choice.  It may be the reason for their aging.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Just Do the Warmup

Many people think that a lifelong conditioning program should be an extreme sport as an end in itself -- rather than just the warmup and preparation for our real life activities.  So, frequently, they risk life and limb -- thinking if it doesn't kill them, it will make them stronger -- rather than dead, crippled or otherwise impaired.  That should be obvious as counterproductive -- yet still, many get lost in their shortsighted objectives -- to miss the whole point. 

One wants to be prepared for anything --  or many things, and not just one thing, because seldom does one's fate lie only on the outcome of one event.  The successful life is actually a series of events -- that we have to do mostly right, and not perfectly, or as a world's record -- and then we don't have to do anything else but rest on our laurels from here on out.

Of course in anything, the greatest difference is the difference between zero and one -- rather than 110% -- and then nothing forevermore.  90% in most things, is enough to be an extraordinary individual.  Even for the world champion, the warmup that prepares them for a world record -- is mostly what they need to do.  They don't have to go over the top -- risking serious injury or death, to go where no one has gone before.

There are the obvious injuries -- but less obvious, are all the ways one can undermine their overall health by throwing all caution to the wind, as one might have to do in a once in a lifetime situation -- but doing it daily, merely increases their chances of a short life.  No organism is designed for a life of all-out struggle for survival on a daily basis -- not even the caveman.

In all probability, those who weren't faced with daily extinction -- are the evolutionary survivors.  They figured out a way not to have to fight for their life -- in everything they did.  That is the bigger picture -- and not the brief short life of those constantly embroiled in life and death struggle -- as though their lives depended on it.  Those are not the people who ultimately survive.

But that means being prepared to meet most of the challenges of everyday living -- rather than being increasingly disqualified from even doing that -- which is merely caring for oneself -- all the days of one's life, as a meaningful and purposeful existence.  One doesn't have to do anything heroic to justify living their daily lives as best they can -- which is the quality of their lives.  That is the average of all they do -- and not just one thing -- to the exclusion of everything else.

Certainly the money is important, but that is not the only thing in life, nor is the amount lifted, or distance run, the pounds lost or gained.  It is the greater totality that matters -- that one is firing on all cylinders, and not just the one.  Along the way, one may even need help -- to overcome an obstacle too big for just any one to achieve.  But if one is conditioned to believe they are always in competition with every other, they may undermine all the others -- thinking that the only way for them to win, is for everybody else to lose.

That's how they think the game is played -- rather than the common purpose of preparing everyone to do their best -- and that is sufficient, for all practical purposes.