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You’re never too old to start your fitness journey

By Justin “Bunk” DeVane

“I’m too old to do that CrossFit stuff”

“Isn’t that bad for your joints?”

“Yeah right! My body can’t get that low anymore.”

These are all statements we hear from our loved ones who have gotten a little older. It is easy to see why this is a concern. I mean we are taught from a young age that repeated use of our joints in squatting, pushing or pulling can cause issues later in life. However, recent research has shown it is actually the opposite. By the time we hit our 40s, most individuals are losing muscle mass at a rate of around 5% every ten years. Doing some quick math this means by 70, we may have lost 50% of our muscle mass. As we lose this muscle tissue, it gets replaced by fat and fibrous tissues. This change causes our skeletal system to now take on this extra load we have gained. This loading is what causes our painful joints, stiffness, aching, and tenderness. All these pains lead to osteoarthritis which can cause sleep imbalances which lead to even more problems.

Although osteoarthritis is something that occurs naturally, it is possible for us to build a support network to help reduce the strain felt between the two bones. Exercise, including weightlifting, helps to build the muscles around these joints. These muscles then help support the load of your body therefore reducing strain on your joints. Just like most skills in life, use it or lose it applies with our muscle mass.

A case for weightlifting and exercise.

So why should we exercise at all? The easiest answer is that exercise, including weightlifting, is the best way to build muscle mass. This means that adding muscle mass should prolong the loss of it. The more you have the longer it takes to lose. Now this doesn’t mean you need to try to lift super heavy weights or try to look like the bodybuilders of the Gold Gym/Muscle beach days, instead think of it like your muscle mass bank account. The more muscle mass you have in your account, the longer you can lose a little from that account. Unfortunately, life can happen. Illness and accidents are hard to predict, but studies show we are much more likely to recover quicker from injury/illness if our fitness foundation is strong (Check out the Blog on the Sickness/Wellness/Fitness continuum).

So start building your foundation today. Don’t wait till your muscle mass account is too low.

Click here and let Artisan CrossFit make a plan to keep you active no matter your age.

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