It is my second day at the gym after a year long layoff from a broken ankle gone bad. I’m hoping to just ease back into things, but I get on the exercise bike and next thing I know I’m redlining it. My heart rate is 166 beats per minute, which is kinda high for a 57 year old guy.
I’m not too worried about a heart attack, mainly because I rode this hard every day before breaking the ankle. But as I look at an exercise chart I have to chuckle. You’re off the charts, laddie!
The moral here is: Don’t Believe Everything You Read. I have always pushed the intensity of whatever sport I was engaged in, since I was a little kid. I’m not bragging, nor am I saying that’s for everyone, but the benefits are worth considering. You can bike, run, ski, or climb like a twenty-year old if you stay engaged. And push it.
I don’t know why, but most of the other athletes I have encountered throughout my sporting career really didn’t approach their sport with much joy or intensity. Sure, it’s fine to go out and have fun, but your body is an incredible machine. Aren’t you ever curious to see what she can do? Put the pedal to the metal.
Think about this, the next time you’re sitting on your exercise bike reading a book. Fifteen minutes of quality riding crushes any amount of coasting, even if you go for an hour. Put the book down and peddle that thing like your life depends on it. Because it does.
Don’t be afraid to keep the intensity going as you feel yourself aging and fading. If you make the effort you will be paid in short-term and long-term benefits.
Feel some intensity. Enjoy some of the benefits.