Body Maintenance for the Long Haul

Turning 70 is actually a big deal, let me tell you. It sounds so fucking old, for one thing. Eyebrows raise when I divulge my age. What follows is for you guys who are getting up in age, my experiences of late in trying to keep the parts working. I got out of shape for really the first time in my life, over the past 2 years. My running sucked, I had lost cardiovascular endurance and muscle strength, and didn’t feel all that great. Ugh! About 3 months ago I started running more seriously, and joined a gym, especially for upper body workouts. You’d think I’d know better than to let things slip, after editing a series of fitness books and hanging out with athlete authors for over 10 years. Well anyway, do I feel better!

In running you’ve got to push the limits to make progress, and if you’re going to compete in races, you have to administer pain in measured doses while training. I knew all this about running, from getting in and out of shape over the years; it was a familiar path. Weight training, however, was different. I hadn’t worked out with weights since the ’80s when I hung out with Bill Pearl for two years while we did GETTING STRONGER. This was the first gym I’d ever joined and I feel like a kid in the candy store. There are literally 100s of machines, fitness gizmos, a superb collection of free weights. I knew the basics, from GETTING STRONGER, and started doing 30-40 minute workouts 2-3 times weekly. Man! First was the upper body pump, something runners don’t experience. Things started circulating in my chest and arms, and this felt good. In a very short time I started putting on muscle. Bill talks about this: in GETTING STRONGER, he says that weight training produces noticeable results in a month or less, and that’s why it’s so encouraging. So it is; whatever your age, it’s never too late to put some of that muscle back on.

About Lloyd Kahn

Lloyd Kahn started building his own home in the early '60s and went on to publish books showing homeowners how they could build their own homes with their own hands. He got his start in publishing by working as the shelter editor of the Whole Earth Catalog with Stewart Brand in the late '60s. He has since authored six highly-graphic books on homemade building, all of which are interrelated. The books, "The Shelter Library Of Building Books," include Shelter, Shelter II (1978), Home Work (2004), Builders of the Pacific Coast (2008), Tiny Homes (2012), and Tiny Homes on the Move (2014). Lloyd operates from Northern California studio built of recycled lumber, set in the midst of a vegetable garden, and hooked into the world via five Mac computers. You can check out videos (one with over 450,000 views) on Lloyd by doing a search on YouTube:

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