Exercise for a 60+ Year Old Man – is it even worth it?
Do you ever feel that you’re too old to workout?
Is there any point to even trying to get back in shape when you’re already “Over The Hill?”
Unfortunately, as men get older – into their 40’s, 50’s, 60’s and beyond – most just give up on their health and fitness. When it should be the complete opposite, during the 2nd half of life your health and fitness should take on a whole new level of importance.
It’s quite common to see hard working men spending their entire adult lives doing everything they can to provide for their family, put food on the table, and a roof over their heads – while neglecting their own health and fitness in the process.
I realize that putting your family above your own needs may seem like the noble thing to do. But in the greater scheme of things is this really a smart choice?
Neglecting your health and fitness will eventually come back to bite you. It’s like trying to get ahead by ignoring the maintenance on your car. Things are going to break down and fall apart if you don’t look after it. And what might have been a simple repair job, could lead to engine failure if left unfixed.
If you abuse your car, you can always get another one. But the same can’t be said for your body – you only get one – so you better look after it now while you still can.
Just think about it…
All the years of working hard to provide for your family isn’t going to mean much if you die before your time, and leave your wife without a husband, and your children without a father.
That was almost the case for Paul Miller, a 62-year-old English Teacher from Alberta, Canada. The stress of his work caused him to seek relief through “Comfort Food”… Rich, fatty, greasy, calorie-dense foods… And going to the gym for exercise was the last thing on his mind.
It got to the point where Paul no longer cared about how fat and unhealthy he had become. At the end of the day, he just wanted that temporary relief of eating junk food while sitting on the sofa in front of the TV.
As the years progressed Paul’s weight climbed to over 240 pounds. The extra fat around his waistline was circling his heart like a seal in shark infested waters… He was a ticking time bomb… and it almost cost him his life!
Paul and I were recently chatting about his situation and how he was able to turn his life around after a near death experience at age 62. He was kind enough to let me share his story below. Hopefully it will help inspire someone who’s in a similar situation right now to make a change before it’s too late.
Check out the zoom video below that I had with Paul Miller. He was kind enough to open up and share his story in this video conversation. Paul has a powerful message that saved his life, and you need to hear it – especially if you feel that there’s no hope, or that it’s “Too Late” to make a change.
Sirens shattered the comfortable silence of a frosty February evening of 2017.
The ambulance stopped in front of our little rental home. The EMTs clambered out, and a gurney was hurriedly pulled out, and clattered up the sidewalk into our small living room… for me!
Much of what happened after that was dim… I was dying… I thought.
This felt like the darkest experience of my life. It was, however, the catalyst that sent me scurrying down the path of health and fitness.
I was rushed to the ER of the local hospital in Calgary, Alberta, Canada with severe chest pain. The pain intensified as the minutes passed. Eventually, I lapsed into unconsciousness for six hours.
I thought I could hear my vitals read out by the EMTs… and it burned me with shame.
“Age, 62, weight… hmm… around 240 pounds”
I had never been this heavy… but I didn’t care anymore. I was dying… I thought.
Gradually, I returned to consciousness.
An attending ER physician, an alert young woman, whose name I do not remember, reached out and took my hand. Her grip was vise-like and her gaze intense. In an even, but hard-as-granite tone, she spoke these words, now indelibly etched into my soul:
“The Universe has given you a gift. What are you going to do with it?”
Seconds flashed by; she relaxed her grip. She stood back, looked at me with profound care, and then, she walked away. I never saw her again. It left me both shaken and challenged… I had, indeed, been given a second chance.
But a second chance at what? Then it hit me: a second chance to live my life…
To – get – things – right. All of them. It was that day that my journey toward better health began.
Later that week, a colleague was not so fortunate. He too, had a cardiac event, but died in ER shortly after arriving at the hospital. That incident galvanized my resolve. But what would I do?
Several weeks later, after returning to work from sick leave, a new semester began at the learning centre where I worked. Shyly finding his way to one of our computers, an impressively muscular Iranian student sat down to work on his assignments. He struggled with his English and the software used for the course. He looked pleadingly at me for help. I sat with him, and in the days that followed, to help him.
Intensely curious, I asked him, “Mr. M, how did you get so… big?” He laughed and shared his story, a story of coming from very poor health, and how he eventually became a fitness trainer and bodybuilder. He had also come from a dark place. I also shared my story, and he was profoundly touched by what he heard. He suggested we meet after school and get started on a better path to improving my health and fitness.
We met regularly, and I learned much from him. Day by day we saw small steps of progress.
Unfortunately, the pressures of that young man’s schooling required him to leave the campus in search of an internship for his course of studies.
I was left on my own, trying to keep up my regimen, calling it my “Professional Development Project.” Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, I went to our school’s weight training room to carry on with my “project.”
Eventually, I added Tuesdays to my schedule, but I really did not feel or even see as much change as I had hoped. But little by little I whittled away a few inches here and added some strength there, and in my greyer moments, I thought that such would be my path. That was until I was introduced to another man, Mr. K. who also had some language learning struggles.
During my conversation with Mr. K, the fact that I worked out in our school’s gym caught his attention. He, too, had his own regimen. His own stirring story of where he once was and where he was now caught my attention. Was this another “second chance?” He asked if he might join me on the following Friday to see what I was doing and offer me some tips.
We met; I worked out, and even though he gave a few helpful hints, I sensed he wanted to say more. “Is that what you do?” I nodded sheepishly.
“Well that stops today. Meet me Monday, and we are going to start a new program.”
The following Monday we met, and everything changed. We added different kinds of stretching, various carefully-paced exercises to improve my cardiovascular system, and a structured strength-training regimen. If I had thought that this was all to his plan, I was sadly mistaken. We sat down and worked out a nutrition plan as well. When all the pieces of his proposed training plan were laid out, the objective was clarified:
“It is a plan,” he explained with a contagious passion, “to create the best version of you.”
In 2017 I was 240+ pounds, in 2018 I was still hovering around 220 pounds – but in the six months that followed, with all that I learned from my “Coach”, I dropped to 172 pounds. I felt healthier than I had ever felt before, and saw a new-found strength in my body, top to bottom, inside and out.
Much like Mr. M, my new “Coach / Brother” Mr. K, needed some time away… and I did not know if he would ever return to keep watch over my regimen.
That was when I came upon Lee Hayward’s website. The exercises, stretching routines, and parts of the nutritional advice were remarkably similar.
I had found… a new home… and a new competent coach.
I will soon be 65 and I am taking on physical challenges I never would have dreamed possible just a few years earlier.
When colleagues see me, I keep hearing, “Age really is just a number.”
My gym-friends constantly talk to their other friends about “that grandpa who crushes it in the gym.”
I will always be grateful to these two friends. I will always be grateful to Lee’s coaching and insights, but what made the biggest difference? I did. I decided. I changed. I ate better food, went to the gym, did the reps… and it has been well worth the money and time invested.
If I can make the change, I am completely convinced anyone can… without needing a near-death experience to shock you toward that change.
The health I feel now has affected my entire world, mind, soul and body. If anyone reads this and wants to change, then this is my advice: do it. Get a coach and mentor, find some like-minded friends, eat properly, commit to going to the gym, and day by day, step by step, you will be so glad you started down the road to wellness… at last!
In just 2 years Paul went from obese, stressed, depressed, and nearly dying from cardiac arrest… To now living life to the fullest as a healthy and active 65 year old. He’s a better husband, better father, and better person all because he choose to make his health and fitness a priority.